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Ski and Sip Day Trips: Cross-Country and Craft Brews

Pair your day of Nordic skiing with the perfect beer and a bite.

Travel Tips Thursday, April 27, 2023

With spring’s bluebird skies, dazzling sunshine, and longer days, there’s never a better time for an apres ski beer to toast to a day on the trails. 

So why not make your ski day a little longer—or even make it an overnight?—by adding in a visit to a beloved local watering hole to clink glasses and celebrate the winding down of a glorious season.

In fact, science recommends you do: A systematic review on beer consumption and endurance sports in the International Journal of Sport Nutrition and Exercise Metabolism found that lighter beer (4%ABV or less) can be rehydrating, and the carbs and sodium it offers are beneficial, too. Bonus: Beer has polyphenols, antioxidant and antiviral plant compounds that could keep your immune system strong. 

So tag a designated driver or book a room, then go ahead and settle in for a pint after your next long slow distance day. We won’t tell. 

The Destination: Breckenridge 

The tracks: Breckenridge Nordic, with 2,000 acres at 9,800 feet for awesome spring conditions 

The hangout: Rocky Mountain Underground, a kicked-back bar scene with a distinctly mountain-lifestyle vibe: employee-owned, carbon neutral, and connected to their bike and ski shop on Main Street

The pour: Escape to Colorado IPA 

A bite: A Jalapeño Poppin’ sandwich with jalapeño, bacon, blackberry jam, red onion, white cheddar, and muenster cheese

The Destination: Grand Lake 

The tracks: Grand Lake Nordic, a hidden gem with roller-coaster-like intersecting trails for fast, fun laps

The hangout: World’s End Brewpub, an on-the-boardwalk, in-town, hole-in-the-wall joint serving small-batch in-house brews and craft beers from around the world

The pour: The Reverend Belgian-style quadrupel ale 

A bite: The jumbo Bavarian pretzel with beer cheese for dipping 

The Destination: Tabernash

The tracks: Snow Mt. Ranch’s wooded terrain near the cabin area, where late season snow lingers longest

The Hangout: Fraser River Beer Company just down the road in Fraser

The pour: Byers Peak Brown is a smooth, easy-drinking favorite of the local crowd

A bite: A walking taco from Shred’s Taco food truck parked out front 

The Destination: Beaver Creek 

The tracks: Beaver Creek’s lift-served Nordic trails are multi-use, with breathtaking above-it-all views

The hangout: Craftsman Brew Co. (in Edwards), a modern, chef-driven sandwich and beer bar.

The pour: DESTIHL cherry pie sour ale

A bite: Artisanal apps like coal-roasted yams with lime yogurt, brown butter, hazelnut, cilantro 

The Destination: Eldora 

The tracks: Eldora Resort, whose breath-taking climbs and wicked descents are the perfect challenge for end-of-season fitness 

The hangout: Busey Brews, a family-run joint with attitude and ambiance (in Nederland)

The pour: Cerveza mi Face-ah Mexican lager 

A bite: The “best in Boulder” award-winning house-smoked wings—try the Ned Dry Rub

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