Aspen, Colorado is the nicknamed The Silver City becuase of its history as a silver mining town and its been glittering ever since. Its je ne sais quoi attracts everyone. From people who see Aspen Mountain or Highlands and just want to ski. Everyday. For the rest of their lives. And do. To others who are urbanites escaping to the mountains and its sports for refreshment.
As a rowdy but casual and laid back ski-party town in the seventies to the history of restaurants and eating and drinking in and or around Aspen, histories which could fill many lurid volumes, to its current incarnation as the best place to spend a month or twelve, if Aspen were a person she’d be fun. Real fun.
This is the town that came “this close” to letting Hunter S Thompson be mayor. Go to the Woody Creek dive bar and see how ramshackle a bar he preferred.
Aspen: no stranger to slightly bad men and utterly excellent food.
Its near Independence Pass, a gnarly mountain pass that is only open until winter is upon us, and then closed until passable again without chance of death by ice. This is the road that hard core cyclists like to try themselves on.
The Roaring Fork river runs through Aspen. It has a music conservatory, the Aspen Institute for interesting speakers, the jazz Festival, the Food and Wine Festival all in a town that is completely walkable, whose surrounds go neverendingly into the Wilderness but getting the lay of the land is surprisingly easy.
It’s a Victorian village at the end of the road. Its so small its quaint. When it snows, you feel like your in the snowglobe of your dreams.
Aspen is the kind of land that calls those people I like to call “land shepherds”. The Aspen Valley Land Trust, and these shepherds exist because the mountains are so awesome they attract people who want to bask in their valleys, retain the air, conserve the soil, wish others to see it as they see it, full of resources to be managed and let alone, and a community of people who all commune in and around the same lands.
Since its a small town, its ok to say hi and be social.
Going on hikes, cross country skiing, mountaineering, camping, fat bike riding, mountain biking, going to a rec center, all of these activities are all there for the taking.
If you want to judge an area by how much space and place it affords to horses, then Aspen scores high.
All passes to Aspen also get you into Snowmass, Buttermilk, Highlands and Ajax.
Getting around. Get a driver so you don’t have to worry about how social you get. If you want to walk, get a vacation rental closest to your favorite mountain. You can of course take the bus.
Get a concierge service to take the planning and prep out of your vacation rental cooked meals.
For getting around outside, everyone loves Aspen Trail Finder
Check out Aspen Snowmass website for more information on playing on the mountains.
The state of Colorado has this website about visiting Aspen
As far as daily newspaper reading, I check out Aspen Daily News and