In addition to being a Ski Town, Steamboat Springs enjoys a reputation for ranching and mining. All three elements factor into the city-owned Haymaker Golf Course (haymakergolf.com; 970-870-1846), which presents views of iconic Mount Werner from the site of a former rock quarry and hayfield. The 7,308-yard Keith Foster layout rolls like a links layout, with rock walls, deep bunkers, native grasses and fiddly greens forcing you into decisions where the rewards appear to outweigh the risks—but do they? Find out. Green fees max at $62.
Rock the ‘Boat
Ride the Gondola at Steamboat Ski Resort to the 9,100-foot-high outdoor deck of Thunderhead Lodge, where the Sunset Happy Hour takes place most Thursday and Sunday nights throughout the summer. The $12 lift ticket includes $5 towards food and drink.
Wet a Line in the Yampa River. Or the Stagecoach Tailwater. Or Sarvis Creek, the Elk River or Stagecoach Reservoir. Steamboat overflows with choice fly-fishing spots. Visit steamboatflyfisher.com or steamboatspringsflyfishing.com for current information and conditions.
BRING the kids to the Coca-Cola Adventure Zone (steamboat.com) at the base area of the ski resort. Open June 9 through September 25. Activities include Slingshot Bungee Jump, Climbing Wall, Water Walkerz, Ropes Course, Mechanical Bull and much more.
Take a hike on Steamboat’s many trails. High points include Thunderhead Trail, which climbs nearly four miles to the top of the gondola, where you can hook up with the Vista Nature Trail, Fish Creek Falls, Spring Creek Trail, Emerald Mountain and Howelson Hill are also good walks unspoiled (simplysteamboat.com).
Fun is in the Air
FULL CALENDAR: Bright colors will fill the sky July 9-10 at The 35th Annual Hot Air Balloon Rodeo & 42nd Annual Art in the Park. The events represent just one of many signature summer happenings in Steamboat. Others include the Steamboat Wine Festival (Aug. 10-14), Steamboat All Arts Festival (Aug. 15-21) and the Wild West Air Fest (Sept. 3-4). steamboatchamber.com
SOAK YOURSELF: The relaxing 104-degree mineral waters at Strawberry Park Hot Springs (strawberryhotsprings.com) bubble from a vast elaborate network of pools. Open until 10:30 p.m. Sun.-Thurs. and until midnight Fri.-Sat., the facility features private-pool watsu massage, lodging in quirky cabins, private massage huts, tipis and picnic areas. Alcohol and glass are prohibited.
Two to Know
For more than 40 years, the Robert Trent Jones II-designed course at Rollingstone Ranch Golf Club (rollingstoneranchgolf.com; 970-879-1391) has treated golfers to incredible views of the Yampa Valley and Flat Tops Wilderness while also challenging them with upwards of 70 bunkers, the majority of them protecting the glass-like greens that break away from Mount Werner. Fish Creek snakes through seven holes, and pines and aspens frame every fairway. Troon Golf manages the course for the Sheraton Steamboat Resort.
SteamBoat’s Oldest Course, the nine-hole Steamboat Golf Club (steamboatgolfclub.com), dates to 1964. Built by locals and owned by 100 members, the scenic and short (an 18-hole round tips out at 5,826 yards) course borders the Yampa River and always welcomes the public. Generous fairways, small target greens and water on all but two holes make this a fun un place for families to spend a couple of hours. It’s a eminently walkable and affordable ($31 for nine holes, $45 for 18).
On Your Own Steam
18 YEARS: Since 1998 Café Diva (cafediva.com) has dominated the Steamboat dining scene. Located in the Steamboat Mountain Village, the intimate restaurant changes its menu seasonally, with twists on haute classics sharing space with truly inspired gluten free, and vegetarian/vegan dishes.
AT HOME ON THE RANGE: Downhill from the Steamboat Mountain Village, the town of Steamboat remains an authentic Colorado mountain town, with parades and chili festivals and myriad shops, restaurants, art galleries and spas. Downtown Steamboat Springs (mainstreetsteamboat.com) also boasts F.M. Light & Sons, which for five generations has outfitted cowboys, cowgirls and their families with functional and fashionable western products.
NOT THEIR FIRST RODEO: The most successful weekly rodeo in the country, the Steamboat Springs Pro Rodeo Series (steamboatprorodeo.com) takes place Friday nights at Brent Romick Rodeo Arena at the base of the Howelsen ski jump hill. The famous pre-rodeo barbecue runs from 6:00 to 7:15 p.m. Then it’s on to the regular roster of events, including team roping, bareback riding, steer wrestling, cowgirl and junior barrel racing and the wildest and most perilous eight seconds in sport – bull riding.
SEE ALL COLORADO GETAWAYS:
This article appears in the June 2016 issue of Colorado AvidGolfer.
Colorado AvidGolfer is the state’s leading resource for golf and the lifestyle that surrounds it, publishing eight issues annually and proudly delivers daily content via coloradoavidgolfer.com. Follow us on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.