Destination: Breckenridge, Colorado
About: Located in Summit County, CO, along the Blue River.
Route: I-70 West to CO-9 S or 285 West to CO-9 North (longer 2 lane road, but sometimes less traffic)
Distance: 80.2 Miles
Time: 1h 30 mins
Trip Length: Overnight or Day Trip
Sleeping: Airbnb or Hotel
Breckenridge is a quintessential Colorado Ski town. Settled in the 1850’s by gold miners, the first ski trails were made in 1961. Today “Breck” is a year-round destination for outdoor enthusiasts with access to every sport imaginable.
Airbnb – You can find mega-mansions to sleep a group of 20, a small ski-in, ski out condo or a quaint house right in town. If Breck’s prices are a little too high for you expand your search to include Frisco. There is great transportation between both so no need to find parking at the slopes or at night.
The Bivv Lodge is a super cool and well-decorated hostel that works great for groups. And they have a bar.
Breckenridge has a great bus system that picks up all over and can drop you at the slopes so it’s not imperative to stay “on the mountain”. I would prefer to stay closer to town so you can walk at night.
How to get around
Parking – Breckenridge parking can be difficult especially during ski season. Rentals and resorts will offer at least 1 free space but if you’re going to have multiple vehicles you will need to double-check where you can park with your host.
Buses -The free bus system is great and can take you everywhere you need to go, plus it’s totally free! Learn more here.
Uber & Lyft – There are a few Ubers/Lyfts in the mountains so if you need one to take you to dinner or home after a night out you should be able to find one.
Drunk Passes – If you drive into town you can ask for a “drunk pass” from a restaurant. This will allow you to leave your car parked overnight but you must pick up your car by 9 am
Mi Casa – For some reason after a long day zipping up and down a mountain in the cold you really crave a margarita? Not sure why but I’m 100% okay with this weird phenomena. At the south end of town and close to Peak 9 is Mi Casa. The bar is first come, first to serve and packed for happy hour. The restaurant is rather large and great for accommodating large groups.
Modis – Hands down my favorite place to eat in Breckenridge. Everything on the menu is delicious, the prices are reasonable and the service is incredible. I also appreciate their reasonably priced wine list. Nothing like a great glass of wine and a warm bowl of miso ramen to warm up after a day of skiing.
Clints Bakery – WAKE UP you didn’t come all the way to Colorado, not to ski or hike or fish or just breath that fresh mountain air! But those craft beers hit you hard and you’re feeling it today. Head downtown to Clints for a bagel, coffee and maybe a slice of cake to wake you up.
Eric’s Downstairs – Huge restaurant and bar with killer pizza. This is great for groups, families or watching a game. Plus there is a huge arcade.
The Canteen Tap House & Tavern – Amazing drinks and food – I love their margs, queso, flatbread and wings
Motherload – For ice-cold beer and comfort food the Motherload tavern will hit the spot. Live music daily too!
Moe’s Original BBQ – Good ole south Alabama BBQ but in Colorado. Their porch nachos are my kryptonite tonight. I have a serious addiction to them. Also, they have Sweet Tea!!
Blue Stag Saloon – Classic bar with nice outdoor fire pit
Brooklyn’s Billiards – Pool hall and bar
Motherload – Live music and beer, yes, please!
Après – Fancy cocktails and craft beer
Breckenridge Tap House – All the craft beer
Dance – Time to Get Funky
Liquid Lounge & Cecilia’s – The “Clubs” of Breck. Both bars will have a DJ spinning starting around 9. Cecilia’s will probably have a cover and is closer to a real club with bottle service. Liquid Lounge is a bar with a DJ and never has a DJ. If I am out in Breck you will find me at Liquid Lounge.
Gold Pan Saloon – Bar that feels like a barn with DJ
Skiing & Snowboarding
1. Buy your ski passes in advance and online!! You are guaranteed the cheapest ticket and you can avoid some long lines.
2. If you know your boot size and type of ski you can also reserve all your gear online and pick it up when you get to town. I highly suggest reserving all your rental gear online before your trip. I have had friends hop from ski shop to ski shop just trying to find skis to rent on busy weekends. Christy Sports or Main Street Sports is where I have rented from in the past.
How To Get To The Mountain
Breckenridge is really wide. From town looking at the resort, the furthest peak to your left is Peak 10 the peaks go down to the fairly new peak 6 on the far right.
Peak 9 & 10 is accessible from the south side of town. You can either get dropped off or park at a nearby lot and walk the 100 yard or so to the Quick Silver Super Chair. By Bus hop off at the Beaver Run Super Chair.
To access the rest of the mountain you will need to take the Gondola. Taking the Gondola is the most popular way to access the mountain and often very crowded. The Gondola starts in the middle of town and makes three stops. The first at a residential area, the second stop is at Peak 7 (Independence Chair) before continuing to the base of Peak 8. Peak 8 is the main base of the mountain.
There is another chair accessible by bus or car (drop off), The Snowflake Lift. If you are staying on the mountain you will probably use this lift.
Peak 8 can be very crowded because of the gondola drop-off so I tend to avoid this area. However, the T-Bar and patio are great on a sunny day.
Where to ski
If you’re just learning to ski, I highly recommend going to the base of Peak 9. This area offers some great long flat runs to get your legs under you.
For the more advanced skiers, you will love Peak 10 and the T-Bar above Peak 8. 6-Chair and E-Chair are off the beaten track for most resort skiers. Ride The Imperial Express, the highest lift in north america to hit the top bowls in Breck.
Love trees? Head over to Peak 9 and ski between Upper Lehmans and Briar Rose. Peak 6 also has some great trees. These runs will literally take you all over the mountain.
Peak 10 – Falcon Super Chair is never that crowded but the runs are steep and quick. Lots of bumps and trees of this peak too.
Peak 9 – I tend to stay on Peak 9 when I ski Breck. Lots of great runs with a mix of bumps and trees. Plus the area is not as crowded.
Peak 8 – Peak 8 can be very crowded because of the gondola drop-off so I tend to avoid this area. But it does offer a variety of blues, greens & blacks
Peak 7 – Great for ripping down blues, these long rolling runs are fun for everyone.
Peak 6 – If the winds aren’t too bad I suggest heading up Peak 6 for spectacular views of Summit County. This very exposed Peak offers great blacks and blues for the more advanced skier.
Summer & Fall
Any activity you wanna do Brecks got it. I hiked my first 14er outside Breck! For hiking, fishing, whitewater rafting, and more head to Go Breck to discover all Breck has to offer.
** I intentionally left our Spring. Spring means spring skiing. From Mid-April when the mountain closes to May is “Mud Season”. The mountains are still getting sporadic snow storms and if it’s not snowing it’s melting and therefore it’s muddy. Best to avoid until June!