Adventure Tubing with Sage Outdoor Adventures

Adventure Tubing…can those two words really go together in the same sentence?   When I think of tubing, I think of a nice easy float down a stretch of river, not something adventurous.  Well, guess what, those two words go quite nicely together!  In fact, I think they are my two new favorite words together!  I grew up rafting on all the rivers in Colorado and Utah, was a raft guide for 6 years, and loved tubing when I was young.  Little did I know that a family owned company called Sage Outdoor Adventures  (just 100 yards from the Antlers condos) would come up with a NEW outdoor activity to do in Vail beside whitewater rafting.  So…here is a bit of my adventure:  Started out getting to the meeting spot to get all of our gear (wetsuits, booties, gloves, helmets, etc.)  We decided we looked A LOT like frogs with our gloves, but they really helped with navigating down the river!

After dressing in our amazingly attractive wetsuits, we jumped into the river in our tubes and set off downriver!   We got a little taste of everything.  From relaxing in the calm water to getting splashed by the waves in the little rapids.  It was awesome!  We saw some amazing wildlife too!  A blue heron was drinking out of the river next to us and flew right above us- it was beautiful!  Saw some baby ducks, geese, and a variety of other birds.  There is nothing quite like being outside, in the wild!

Meadow Mountain biking

Looking for an easier mountain bike ride near the Antlers at Vail hotel ?  Try Meadow mountain for some mountain biking down near the town of Minturn.  Go West on I-70 to Down junction, exit 171.  Park at the U.S. Forest service station at Dowd Junction just southoff of Interstate 70.  Once in the parking lot and on your bikes, go south of the parking lot and start up the double track road.  After about 1 mile of climbing you’ll come to a sign on your left that says, “1 mile to Grouse mountain trail”.  Take this single track here that goes south.  It is a fantastic trail.  There are two short hike a bike sections for about 10 feet.  Once you cross the bridge (over Grouse Creek), you’ll come out to a double track (Grouse Mountain trail)  Turn left here going back down to Hwy 24.  Just return on Hwy 24 going North for about 3/4 of a mile back to the parking lot.  Quick and easy.

Riding on Meadow Mountain

Overlooking Minturn, CO

Pitkin Lake hiking Trail

Pitkin lake trail in East Vail, Colorado is similiar to the popular Booth lake trail in that the final destination is a scenic mountain lake. It is about 5 miles one way and can take anywhere from 5-8 hours round trip with most people taking around 6 hours. The highest point along the pitkin trail is 11,400, which is higher than the top of Vail mountain. Total elevation gain is 3,000 vertical feet (thank you very much). It is quite steep at the beginning, so be ready. In addition, it can be deceiving for your arrival to the lake. Everytime you think you are there, you have more trail to hike and another hill to climb. The trailhead for the pitkin hiking trail is off of interstate 70, exit 180. Once you get off at exit 180 go north and take a right on the small road that heads east towards some townhomes. Trail head parking is along the street and the trailhead is on the north by the creek. It is a simple 10 minute drive from the Antlers at Vail hotel.


View Pitkin Creek Trail in a larger map

Have fun on the trail !

Greg Gone Green

What is happening to me?

I woke up this morning and as 300,000,000 other Americans or so do, I brushed my teeth.  Big difference though on this particular morning; I turned the water off while I moved the Johnson & Johnson, soft bristle, blue handled Flintstone toothbrush from side to side.  For 30 or 40 seconds I didn’t waste water.

I’m not usually a breakfast person, but on this day I felt like eggs and maybe a slice of watermelon.  I look into the bowels of my refrigerator and no eggs or watermelon or anything else that wasn’t in a beer can.  I need to go to my local grocer and restock.  I gather my car keys and some currency.  I start the car and have no gas.  Leaning against the wall in front of the car is my bike.  “Why not”, I say to myself.  I peddle to the City Market, purchase what fits it my back pack and proceed home for what is now a well deserved breakfast.  Didn’t have to buy gas, drive the car, use those plastic grocery bags and I got some excersise.   

When I’m at work here at the Antlers, I move around the building quite a bit.  I also wait alot for an elevator.  Today I decide to take the steps rather than stare at the floor looking stupid while I waste precious minutes of my life wondering if the cable car will ever come to my floor.  “Walk the steps” I tell myself.  “I’ll get there faster, help preserve my girlish figure and I can save the Antlers a dime”.  Those elevators use a lot of energy.

I get home from work and want to eat again.  The few dishes I have are dirty.  I wash them by hand.  Everything tastes better on the BBQ grill.  No reason to use 4 stove tops and an oven.  I need music when I eat (blues for BBQ, Sinatra for Italian sausage, etc), but the light bulb burned out over the stereo, so I replace it with a flourescent. I check my e-mails before I go to bed and then turn my computer off.  Now it’s time to brush my teeth again.

Nothing is really happening to me.  It just all seems to make sense.

Bighorn hiking trail in East Vail, Colorado

Bighorn Trail is one of the shorter hikes in the East Vail, Colorado area. At the end is an old miner’s cabin (now a hunting cabin) which you can explore or camp out in. People call this the “Bighorn Hilton”. To get to this Vail hike drive East from the Antlers at Vail Hotel about 4 miles on Interstate 70 to exit 180. Get on Bighorn road and drive East until you get to Columbine Drive. Take a left and go up the hill and underneath the freeway where you’ll soon find the trailhead. The trail is very steep at the beginning but mellows out in the middle, then hits a couple of boulder fields before you top out through meadows before getting to the cabin. It is approximately 3.6 miles one way. 2200 vertical feet of gain. It tops out at 10,800 feet.


View Bighorn Trail, Bighorn cabin East Vail in a larger map

Enjoy the hike !

Vail Moose on the Loose

Tom Schlader, our Chief Engineer and part-time nature photographer, captured these amazing pictures of the Vail moose and her calf today outside the Antlers. These are the infamous pair that have been seen all along the Gore Creek in Vail Village and trotting through Lionshead.  Several of our guests who were laying poolside at the Antlers at Vail Hotel also got to witness the event.

Moose by Gore Creek

Enjoying some lunch

Off to greener pastures

Moose on the Loose next to the Antlers at Vail Hotel

It is always a treat to see the wildlife Colorado has to offer but please remember to keep your distance and respect nature.

~ Darci

What is a Driver?

This is an account of what goes on behind the scenes.  I feel compelled to share with you some information that goes unnoticed, but certainly has an impact on a days event if some detail was missed.

This past Saturday the annual Triple By Pass bike race, event, excursion, whatever the participants call it, was scheduled from Evergreen, Colorado and terminated in Avon.  This is 100 miles of insufferable bike riding over 3 Colorado mountain passes.  Congratulations to the Antlers team that endured and completed the contest.  (I suppose I should name names.  Meridith, Rob, Kathy, Bert, Danny, Jimmy, Randi and Don.  Your commitment to your sport is admirable).

Now I would like to congratulate me.  The preparation to get these world class athletes in place for the days event is tireless.

First I have to get gas in the van.  Then I have to get up at 4:00 am to drive these people to the starting point in Evergreen.  Then I have to drive back. 

Mighty are the preparations for thier arrival back in Avon 10 hours later.  I have to get a spot for the gang in the picnic area.  Make sure the ice for the margaritas doesn’t melt, buy a watermelon, purchase some helium balloon’s and write countless text messages that no one answers.  I was exhausted. 

I suspect pictures will be posted soon dramatizing the day.  You will not see, however, any pictures of the “Driver”.  He simply goes about his business.  It is a thankless yet rewarding job and I am proud to be a small part of such a momentous day.

That is what a Driver is.

Greg

(This Post is filed under shamless plugs)

New Coffee service Vail

Vail’s newest coffee service is now available at the Antlers at Vail lobby.  This is special folks.  No more waiting for another batch of brew.  These gigantic air pots hold gallons upon gallons of hot, tasty coffee.  Stop on down for a “pick me up” at any time.

We like the Organic Uganda description:  “A very pleasing light roast coffee with spicy hints of hutmeg and cinnamon with a woody undertone and a smooth chocolate finish”.   Wow!

Vail in the Spring!

I just spent almost a week out at Vail (at the Antlers) at the end of June, cycling every day out along the Vail Golf Course- still just a little snow on the mountain peaks and SO GREEN and cool and sunny- thought you would enjoy this picture I took one day cycling! The plus was the Artists Festival that weekend in Lionshead – really interesting art, sculpture and jewelry! See you soon!
SnowWitch