Most ski towns have celebrations in the middle of winter, to ease the cold weather doldrums (honestly, any excuse to get together and have a good time, and we’ll take it!). Vail is no different. Every year, all the businesses and locals work together to throw CarniVail; a big, fun, New Orleans style celebration. Here are 3 tips you’ll need to plan your weekend of fun and celebration!

1. Know the Schedule

This year’s CarniVail takes place February 25-26th. The full schedule can be found here, but here are a few of our favorite events on each day:

Saturday: Crawfish Boil at Eagle’s Nest

On Saturday, February 25th, head to Eagles Nest at 12:00pm for the highest low-country crawfish boil. There will be live music, beer specials (as well as hurricanes), and a fantastic menu of crawfish, corn, sausage, potatoes, gumbo, etoufee, king cake, and more!

Sunday: Bud Light CarniVail Party at Express Lift

Bud Light’s party takes place from 3-6pm at the Express Lift. Here, you’ll find great beer specials, a delicious menu of Colorado sausage, cheese curds, and other great food. Be ready to have a good time, and enter to win the drawing – a Bud Light cruiser bike!

2. Know the Lingo

CarniVail is mirrored off of the famous Mardi-Gras parties in New Orleans. Because of this, you’ll need to know a few terms that aren’t a normal part of our vocabulary:

  • Etoufee: Etouffee (pronounced “ay-TOO-fay) is a traditional Cajun dish made with smothered shellfish, served over rice. It tastes as delicious as it sounds, though not quite as fancy.
  • Beignet: This awe-inspiring dessert is similar to a donut: It is made from deep-fried choux pastry, and usually is filled with chocolate.
  • Jambalaya: This dish is a mix of vegetables and protein (usually chicken, sausage, and shrimp), mixed with rice. It’s a distant cousin of paella – and equally as tasty!
  • Gumbo: Gumbo is often confused with jambalaya; it’s a mix of vegetables and protein, but it’s thinner – like a soup – and served with rice cooked separately.

3. Plan Ahead

Vail is a popular place year-round, but is a favorite destination for many people during CarniVail. Plan ahead by booking your trip now and plotting out which days you’ll ski, and where you’ll head to for apres-ski and other activities. Most of all, have fun during your trip to Vail!

The centerpiece of Vail, Colorado is Vail Mountain: At 5,289 acres, this massive resort is what draws visitors from all over the world. As locals, it’s easy for us to take the impressive mountain and how it is operated for granted. So, in today’s blog post, we’re going to offer a behind-the-scenes look at Vail.



The Stats on the Mountain:

Vail Mountain is truly enormous: With 193 trails stretching out over 5,289 acres, it provides fun for every level of skier. There are 3 terrain parks, a super pipe, and a ski school with over 1,000 instructors. There are 2800 people employed by the resort to keep the operation running smoothly. The ski area’s 31 lifts are capable of taking 60,000 people up the mountain each hour. But, because Vail is so big, that equates to only 2 skiers per acre!

The People Who Make It Work

Vail Mountain wouldn’t be fun to explore if it weren’t for the groomers. They are what keep us all coming back to ski those long, beautifully groomed runs under a bluebird sky. The groomer’s day begins as we all head to the bars and restaurants for après ski. The groomers are hard at work – they groom over 1,000 acres every night using a wide variety of machines. Here’s a great video that explains just how much work goes into making the mountain the best skiing for us all!



The People Who Keep Us Safe

The Vail Ski Patrol operates out of 6 patrol houses across the mountain. They work to keep the mountain safe for everyone – from pulling injured skiers out of bad situations and getting them to medical attention, to blasting for avalanches. They are the first on the scene when there’s an accident, they are constantly patrolling the mountain and looking for dangerous terrain, and they’re in the thick of things when avalanches need to be set off to keep us all safe. The biggest tip that a ski patrol officer has for us to stay safe on the mountain is to “be aware of your surroundings.” This will result in less crashes, which means we’ll all have a much better vacation and time on the mountain.

Visiting Vail: The King of the Ski Resorts

Vail has been referred to as the “king of American ski resorts.” We couldn’t agree more. With such a vast amount of acreage, heated ski lifts with wi-fi, and great après ski options (there is a wide variety of restaurants, bars, and dining options throughout Vail and Beaver Creek), there isn’t a place we’d rather spend the winter. Book your stay at one of Vail’s many great lodging options, and buy your lift tickets today!

Winter is a difficult time for many – it tends to be gloomy, and the cold weather can make you feel a great need to hibernate. Resist this urge – sleeping more will only make you feel more down in the dumps. What you need is an escape to a winter wonderland. A place where people actually prefer winter, and look forward to it during the hot summer days. Here’s a glimpse into the perfect day in Vail, and why you need to plan your trip ASAP.

Bluebird Days and Lots of Powder

One of the best things about winter in Vail is the amount of days we have a clear blue sky. Colorado is famous for its incredibly blue sky. It’s difficult to feel down when you have such a clear expanse of brilliant blue stretch above. And, when that brilliant sky is paired with endless amounts of the powder that Colorado is famous for? Well, that sadness can’t help but melt away.  We got a lot of snow in December: Here’s an idea of what it’s like to ski in fresh powder:

And, speaking of a great day on the mountain, check out this video from a traveler’s recent visit:

Après Ski: Fun for Everyone

After a day on the slopes, there are many opportunities to continue the fun with après ski food, drinks, and activities for the entire family. Go ice skating in Vail Village, grab hot chocolate, pamper yourself with a massage or facial, stop for a bite to eat at one of the many great restaurants in Vail and Beaver Creek, or simply stroll around Vail Village.

Great Places to Stay

Vail has many great condos, hotels, and other lodging options. There are many great options, ranging from luxurious hotels to more affordable accommodations for a trip with your family or friends. No matter where you stay, you’ll have a great trip: Simply being in Vail during the winter is an amazing experience.

Book Your Day in Vail Today

If you’re feel down in the dumps, a trip to Vail is just what you need. This is a part of the world where we celebrate snow – because it means we’ll have fresh powder, and an excuse to grab dinner and drinks after a day on the slopes. Here’s everything you need to plan your trip – book today and enjoy the beauty of Colorado!

What is après ski? Locals talk about it with great fondness – any people ski just for the après. But, what exactly is it?


noun: après-ski
the social activities and entertainment following a day’s skiing.
“the après-ski disco”

Après ski is on of the best parts about skiing or snowboarding: Nothing beats grabbing a cold beer and tasty eats with friends after a long day on the slopes. There’s something special about everyone sitting around in their ski hats, with wind-blown hair and red cheeks enjoying a meal together. There are some great places in both Vail and Beaver Creek that are famous for this quintessential after-skiing/snowboarding activity. Here are the best apres ski in Vail and Beaver Creek, Colorado.

Best Après Ski in Vail, Colorado

 – Bart and Yeti’s

Bart and Yeti’s is Vail’s oldest bar, and it’s a definite local favorite. And, for good reason: They have a fantastic selection of beer, hearty meals (like the Chili Cheese Bart Hamburger), and a fantastic ski lodge atmosphere. They’re famous for their green chili, and the fact that they are dog friendly.

 – Sarah’s Lounge at Christiana Lodge

If you’re looking for a more peaceful apres ski experience, head to Sarah’s Lounge in Christiana Lodge. Their motto is “elegance without pretension.” Enjoy a few cocktails with friends, and listen to Helmut Fricker (a Vail institution) play the accordion.

 – Blü Cow Café

The Blü Cow Café was a Vail mainstay for years. Founded in 1967, the restaurant closed, but was recently reopened by the original owner’s daughter and her best friend. They offer European street food, including the famous Swiss Dog. Their 1,000 square foot space is cozy and fun, making it the perfect destination for après ski.

Best Après Ski in Beaver Creek, Colorado

 – Hooked

Seafood in Colorado? After a day skiing in the Rocky Mountains? This may not seem like the right place to get seafood, but Hooked flies its fish in directly from Japan multiple times a week. Happy Hour gets you great deals of sushi and beer, making it a great après ski destination.

 – Golden Eagle Inn

If you’re staying in Beaver Creek Village, the Golden Eagle Inn is a great place to gather after a day of skiing. They serve lunch until 4pm, and you can get delectable eats like Elk Chili, Ancho Chili Calamari, and Tamari Tuna Tacos.

 – Coyote Café

Coyote Café has a great bar menu, and is a local favorite (it is the first bar in the area!). Located a short distance from Beaver Creek in Avon, it’s a break spot to hit for happy hour (from 3-6). Get a margarita and some Coyote Nachos, and spend the evening with your friends.

Best Après Ski in Vail and Beaver Creek: The List is Long

These are just a few of the great restaurants and bars in Vail and Beaver Creek. There are countless places that offer great food, drinks, and atmosphere for the best après ski meal with your friends.

Crazy Mountain Brewing Company Transitions Edwards Facility to Focus on Rare Local’s Stash Series

* Vail Valley, Colorado-based brewery sets a new plan for its Edwards brewery as brewing operations will now be solely dedicated to developing and releasing a new beer every week for its Local’s Stash Reserve Series.

EDWARDS, Colorado – January 20, 2017 – Edwards, Colorado-based Crazy Mountain Brewing Company has announced that its original brewing facility in Edwards, Colorado is now being used entirely for the production of the company’s limited release “Local’s Stash Reserve Series” of beers.

With the newly available capacity in Edwards, which can produce 15,000 barrels of beer annually, Crazy Mountain has shifted its focus there to its Local’s Stash Reserve Series. Each offering in this series is an extremely limited, one-time release, which is intended to explore the creative depths of a brewer’s mind while continually pushing the boundaries of fermentation science. These beers are unique because of the innovative brewing processes utilized in producing them, combined with the special ingredients sourced (prickly pears, Ponderosa pine needles, hibiscus flowers, etc). Additionally, some of these releases are then aged in hand-selected, used wine and spirits barrels. The results are truly remarkable beers of complex stylistic expressions, many of which are unlike anything brewed before. Packaged in 750ml, cork-and-cage bottles, a new release is going to be offered at least once a week moving forward. These one-off releases are also what comprise the brewery’s quarterly subscription-based Local’s Stash Reserve Bottle Club, in which the new beers are released to Club members first, prior to being made available to the public.

“We’re really excited about the transition we’ve made in Edwards. To be able to focus an entire production facility, of a somewhat significant size, to producing nothing but experimental, one-of-a-kind beers is something that very few breweries are able to do, especially when each one is truly hand-crafted. A few weeks back we had to hand-zest over 100lbs of key limes for an upcoming release. Having all of the space in Edwards to focus on just this project has enabled us to create a kind of hybrid between a brewery and a culinary kitchen, while also giving us more room to barrel age certain styles. Many of these beers go through a recipe development committee process that can last for more than six months before they’ll even be brewed. And what’s really cool is that literally everyone in the company, from the brewers and production team through to the taproom team members, is encouraged to participate in coming up with ideas for, and then brewing, these beers.” – Greg Neale, Director of Marketing.

The capacity in Edwards was freed up when the company made the decision to move its canning line down to its Denver facility which, with the addition of the canning line, can now produce 100,000 barrels of beer each year. The six-year old brewing company expanded to this location in late 2015, in order to fulfill their ever-growing distribution

demands, which now extend beyond Colorado to 24 states and nine international markets.

The Crazy Mountain Brewing Company taprooms in both Edwards and Denver will continue to offer all of their year-round and seasonal beers, as well as the most recent Local’s Stash offerings as they become available.

# # #

About Crazy Mountain Brewing Company

Crazy Mountain Brewing Company is a Colorado-based brewery with production facilities and tap rooms in both Edwards and Denver.

In 2010, Crazy Mountain was founded with one dog and two people, and has grown into one of the largest breweries in Colorado, producing hand-crafted beers of the highest quality, which have garnered global attention.

Crazy Mountain’s beers are available in cans, bottles and on-draft in 24 states and nine countries. For more information, go to or follow #getcrazy on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.

Media Contact:

Andy Nottingham

Crazy Mountain Brewing Company, Marketing Coordinator

970-926-3009 ext:6

There are many ways to enjoy the outdoors in Vail, Colorado – even if you don’t want to ski. Most people think of hitting the slopes in mountain towns to enjoy the snow, but there are other ways to get outside and breath the fresh air and see the beautiful Colorado mountains. Here are a few of our favorite outdoor activities in Vail to enjoy that don’t involve ski lifts, skis, or snowboards.

Free Snowshoe Tours

If you want to explore Vail Mountain without flying down the slopes, snowshoeing is a great option. The Nature Discovery Center offers free snowshoes that are available every day of the week! Take an educational walk through the forests on the mountain. You’ll learn about animals and winter ecology, and enjoy the views of the mountains.

Plan Your Trip: Sign up for the free tour (which includes snowshoes!) at the Nature Discovery Center. Tours are offered daily from 2-3pm, and evening tours are available Thursday-Saturday from 5:30-6:30pm. All you need is warm clothing, and a valid ski pass or scenic gondola ticket.

Ice Skating in Vail

Ice skating is one of the best ways to enjoy the chill of winter. Nothing beats skimming across the ice, knowing a cup of hot cocoa is awaiting you at the end of your adventure. There are two options for ice skating in Vail:

Plan Your Trip: The Lionshead Village ice rink is much smaller than Dobson Ice Arena: Each one offers a different experience that is fun for skating abilities at all levels, and for every age.

Go On a Sleigh Ride

If you’ve never been on a winter sleigh ride, you’re missing out. Sitting in a sleigh pulled by strong horses through the wintry beauty around Vail is one of the best ways to enjoy the season. This options is great for travelers of all ages – young and old alike.

Plan Your Trip: Bearcat Stables is the place to go for your horse drawn sleigh experience. You sit in their cozy sleigh, and sip a hot drink, as you tour through some of the most beautiful scenery in the state. You can opt to have dinner (which is highly recommended!), or just take a sleigh ride.

As you can see, Vail is a winter wonderland that can be enjoyed by skiers and non-skiers alike. There are many things to enjoy if you don’t want to hit the slopes. Don’t forget the great restaurants and bars in Vail and Beaver Creek as well!

If you’re planning a ski trip to Colorado, getting to Vail and Beaver Creek from the airport is something you’ll need to figure out before-hand. There are a few options regarding which airport you fly into, and which transportation you take: No matter which option you choose, you’ll get to Vail and have the vacation of your life!

Getting to Vail and Beaver Creek: Airport Options

Vail is located 100 miles west of Denver’s international airport. There are hundreds of daily flights in and out of this airport, which makes it the most affordable and convenient option in most cases. There are two regional airports as well, however: Eagle County Regional Airport is less than 40 miles from Vail, and the Colorado Springs Airport is less than 200 miles away

  • Denver International Airport (DEN) – 2 Hour, 20 Minute Drive
  • Eagle County Regional Airport (EGE) – 40 Minute Drive
  • Colorado Springs Airport (COS) – 2 Hour, 51 Minute Drive

No matter which option you choose, there are many options for renting a car or getting transportation to your accommodations in Vail and Beaver Creek.

Getting to Vail and Beaver Creek: Transportation Options

Once you’ve arrived at the airport, you’ll need to figure out transportation to your accommodations (or the mountain, if you’re itching to hit the slopes!). There are a few options:

  • Rent a Car: Denver, Colorado Springs, and Eagle County all have reasonable car rental options. If you choose to rent a car, you’ll be able to explore the area much more easily, as you won’t depend on finding outside transportation.
  • Take a Shuttle: There are many different shuttle options from each airport. Our favorite option from Denver International Airport is Peak 1 Express They have the best rates, and offer free wi-fi to and from your destination. Eagle County Airport has a variety of shuttle options, as does the Colorado Springs Airport.

Getting Around Vail and Beaver Creek

There are many options for getting around Vail and Beaver Creek during your stay. From taxis to limos, a free bus, or a shuttle, you can get anywhere in the area quickly and affordably. And, once you get to Vail or Beaver Creek, everything is within a short walking distance, so you don’t always need to have a car.

If you’re planning a trip to Vail and Beaver Creek, is your one-stop-shop for information about where to stay, tips for where to eat, and ideas for the best activities to enjoy during your stay. Book your ski vacation today!

Happy New Year! We hope you had a safe, wonderful holiday. As we get back to work after the holidays, it can be a bittersweet feeling: It can be difficult to get back into a schedule, but with the New Year, a sense of excitement fills the air. We’re excited about 2017 and the many opportunities and blessings to enjoy. Here are a few things we’re especially thankful for this season:

Fresh Powder

The Front Range is getting a lot of snow, and Vail is no different. A winter storm continues to dump snow, with 6” of fresh powder falling in the past 48 hours.  This means that Vail will be the perfect winter wonderland getaway if you’re looking to extend the holidays!

Open Terrain and Lifts

All of our ski lifts are in operation, and 99% of our terrain is open. With only two runs closed, there is more than enough mountain to explore and enjoy this season. We got off to a rocky start with not much snow at the beginning of the ski season, but 2017 is looking like it will be a great year on the mountain!

Fun Family Activities

Finding fun family activities is often a challenge, but it’s important for a healthy family. Vail is a great place to find outdoor activities that even the pickiest person in your family will enjoy. Go ice-skating in Arrabelle Square in Lionshead Village, or, for the bolder and more courageous, check out the Forest Flyer at Adventure Ridge, and finish up with a cup of hot cocoa around the fire.

Delicious Après Ski Options

Let’s face it: Much of the reason we ski is simply for the delicious food we enjoy afterward (admit it, you feel the same way). Nothing beats grabbing a beer or hot toddy and a bite to eat after a day on the slopes. And, Vail has some of the best options in the area. From Garfinkel’s (known as Garf’s to the locals, and a great casual spot), to The Remedy (for those inclined to a more fancy setting), Vail is full of great restaurants and bars to enjoy after spending the day on the mountain!

Happy New Year: Here’s to a Great 2017

These are just a few of the things we’re thankful for here in the Vail Valley. We look forward to 2017, where we hope more exploring, taking in the sites, and enjoying the beauty of Colorado with friends and family will take place!

Christmas is upon us: In only 3 days, we’ll be sitting in front of cozy fires, spending time with our friends and families, and celebrating the greatest season of the year.  If you’re spending the holidays in Vail or Beaver Creek, you’re in the perfect location. We’ve received a lot of snow, and the mountains are draped in a blanket of white. Nothing could induce the spirit of Christmas more than fresh snow in a mountain town. Here are a few of our favorite festivities to enjoy this holiday weekend in Vail and Beaver Creek.

Holiday Festivities in Beaver Creek

Beaver Creek is the quintessential winter wonderland. And, it really comes alive over the holidays during their WinterFest. During Winterfest, there are countless activities to enjoy, including parades, festive lights, performances, characters, contests, and more! Here are a few of our favorite events here. Click the link above to see the complete schedule!

  • Visit with Santa: On Friday and Saturday (the 23rd and 24th) from 3:30-5:30, you can visit with Santa in the Plaza! His booth is set up and he’s ready to hear all the requests from your kids.
  • Parades, Shows, and Skating: Over the next two days, you can enjoy a variety of parades, comedy shows, and fun skating nights. Wazoo the Winter Wizard will make an appearance (and you can spot other fun characters as well!), and you can finish off the evening with the kids by skating in the Winter Rock and Disco Skate Night.
  • Evening Shows: The Vilar Performing Arts Center has two great shows this week: The Ten Tenors Home for the Holidays, and T’was The Night Before Christmas reading.
  • Make S’Mores by the Fire: Head to the Park Hyatt for the s’mores happy hour from 4:00-5:00pm. They provide the marshmallows (they’re homemade!), chocolate, grahams, roasting sticks, and a roaring, cozy fire!

Holiday Festivities in Vail

Christmas is magical in Vail. Whether you decide to ski (there is more open terrain this weekend than any other ski resort in the United States), or simply walk around the village and enjoy the beauty, you’ll have a holiday season you will never forget. Here are a few of our favorite things to do.

  • Go On a Sleigh Ride: One of the best ways to get into the spirit of the season is to take a sleigh ride. Bearcat Stables offers a great sleigh ride experience, including a tasty meal!
  • Attend a Candlelight Service: The Vail Interfaith Chapel offers a Christmas Eve candlelight service you can attend with your family. If you’re in Beaver Creek, you can go to the Beaver Creek Chapel on Christmas Eve for a service.
  • Have Dinner in the Village: Vail Village is a winter wonderland, so simply walking around the streets in the evening gets you into the Christmas spirit. There are many fantastic restaurants that offer great holiday specials – walk around and choose a place that sounds delicious!

A Few of Our Favorite Things: Have a Wonderful Holiday

These are a few of our favorite things to enjoy in Vail and Beaver Creek. This is a special time of year, no matter where you are spending your Christmas. Have a wonderful time celebrating, and a very merry Christmas from everyone here at!

There is so much misinformation on the internet these days. How is a traveler supposed to tell if a vacation spot is going to be all they have hoped and dreamed for, amidst the overwhelming abundance of fluff pieces detailing the “Top 10 Trips of a Lifetime,” and “The Best, Most Delicious Restaurants at the Best Price You’ll Ever Find?” All these promises cannot be true. Today, we’re going to dispel a few myths about Vail that you need to know to effectively plan where you need to go for your next ski vacation.

1. The “King of American Ski Resorts”

Vail Mountain has been referred to as the “King of American Ski Resorts.” Is this true? Let’s take a look at the facts: Vail has 200 trails across 5,289 acres of developed land. If you count the in-bound glades, it has over 8,000 acres of skiable land. We just don’t think that’s enough trails to keep our interest for an entire weekend. Do you?

2. Award-Winning Restaurants

Apparently, Vail is home to many top-shelf restaurants, because it attracts top restratuers to the area. We’re not so easily convinced. Who wants to have locally sourced 100% pure Angus beef, or Applewood bacon for breakfast? And, enjoying a Hawaiian swordfish (flown in daily) after a day on the slopes is just not appetizing at all.

3. Beautiful Scenery

People say that Vail is beautiful, but we feel it is in the eye of the beholder. I mean, who wants to travel across the country to ski in this place for a weekend? It’s simply hideous. We’re not sure who has perpetuated this myth, but one look at this photo should instantly dispel any desire to travel to Vail.

flickr photo shared by snowbuzz under a Creative Commons ( BY-ND ) license (no changes made)

flickr photo shared by snowbuzz under a Creative Commons ( BY-ND ) license (no changes made)

4. “Luxury” Accommodations

One of the most important aspects of traveling is where you stay. And, Vail valley leaves a lot to be desired when it comes to luxury hotels and condos. I mean, really, people – private balconies? Crackling fireplaces in your room? Mountain views? Definitely not luxurious enough to tempt us.

Ask Yourself: Is Vail Luxurious and Beautiful Enough for Your Ski Vacation?

We hope we’ve helped dispel a few of the myths about Vail, Colorado. Many people dream of traveling to this spot of Colorado after reading fluff articles written with the intent to entice to you to spend your next ski vacation here. You read the facts and decide for yourself if Vail has the best skiing, and restaurants, is beautiful enough, or has accommodations luxurious enough to tempt you. The truth is out there – now it’s your move.