Apologies for the misfire last Monday, when I mistakenly published this as an unfinished post. It’s in much better form now!
Summer is short. And while that’s great news for those of us who love winter and live to ski, it’s bad news for those of us who want to experience everything warm weather offers.
Today, I’m sharing some of our warm weather “bucket list” recommendations.
The Route of the Hiawatha Bike Trail, Lookout Pass Ski Area
Last summer, 44,000 people from around the world rode their mountain bikes on the smooth, graded Route of the Hiawatha in Idaho.
This 15-mile stretch of converted rails-to-trails bike route packs in a lot with seven trestles, ten tunnels (including the 1.66 mile Saint Paul Tunnel), beautiful mountain scenery and cool mountain air.
About 80% of cyclists ride downhill from a trailhead near Lookout Pass Ski Area and catch a shuttle back. However, the route can be ridden in both directions. For a fun round-trip, start at the Pearson trailhead and ride uphill first.
Lights and helmets are required. Bike rentals, shuttle service and trail passes are available at Lookout Pass. If you have your bikes with you, you can also buy passes at the trailheads.
Trail of the Coeur D’Alenes, Silver Mountain Ski Resort
The Trail of the Coeur D’Alenes is paved, suitable for busting and moving on skinny tires.
Following a Union Pacific Railroad right-of-way, the route starts in the mountains and rolls downhill along the banks of the Coeur D’Alene River to Lake Coeur D’Alene.
Here’s a video from a multi-day family trip along the entire Trail.
Don’t be deterred if you prefer a day trip or shorter route. Twenty trailheads offer lots of flexibility.
Downhill Biking: Angel Fire, New Mexico
There are many, many fantastic downhill bike parks at ski resorts.
While we haven’t been to Angel Fire, New Mexico, the word on the trail is that it is has the best downhill bike park in North America. Last summer, I compiled a Rider’s Guide to Angel Fire Bike Park and ever since, this northern New Mexico mountain has been on our list.
Quick stat: the Angel Fire Bike Park is the largest downhill and mountain bike park in the Rocky Mountains with over 63 miles of downhill trail and an additional 65 miles of cross-country mountain bike trails.
Beginner downhill bike rental, lift ticket and lesson packages are $99 and the Park welcomes all levels from novices to World Cup riders.
The Banff Via Ferrata at Mount Norquay
Moving north to Canada, we’re excited to try the Banff via ferrata at Mount Norquay. A Canadian Signature Experience, the Mount Norquay via ferrata is a fixed anchoring system of cables, ladders and a suspension bridge. You’re roped in and you go with a guide, so no prior experience is necessary.
Can you say unforgettable adventure?
Wanderlust Yoga Festival and One-Day Events
For 20-some years, I’ve been doing yoga. Sometimes my practice is regular, sometimes quite sporadic. Currently, I’m way into it and yearning to attend a Wanderlust Yoga Festivals, many of which are held at beautiful mountain resorts.
Upcoming festivals include Squaw Valley, Whistler and Tremblant. Not just yoga, the lineup includes loads of live music, events for foodies, educational seminars and the flexibility to set your own pace on mountain trails and lakes.
This summer, Wanderlust is also offering 108 one day events in cities in North America, Europe, Australia and New Zealand.
(Kind of unrelated, but something really cool: Wondering what to wear to Wanderlust? If you haven’t checked out Kate Hudson’s company Fabletics, you should. But first, check out this interesting article from Forbes about Hudson’s hands-on management style.
Ski and Surf: Chile
I already know that I love skiing Chile in the summer.
Without a doubt, summer skiing at Portillo is one of my favorite skiing experiences.
Portillo is stunningly gorgeous, set in a dramatic high Andean valley on the edge of a lake. Crowds are few, the snow is generally super light and abundant and the powder lasts for days. And while a fully catered, all inclusive week is how most people visit Portillo (there are several lodging options at different price points), day tickets are also available at a very reasonable cost.
Another option is summer skiing at Valle Nevado.
Valle Nevado is a large resort with lodging and restaurant options. It’s adjacent to two additional resorts, La Parva and El Colorado. Add up all this acreage, along with Valle Nevado’s hike-to back bowl, for over 5000 skiable acres.
Or for the ultimate summer escape, add surfing to your ski trip by visiting Metanzas or Pichilemu, two towns known for steady winds and perfect waves.
Just want to stroll the beach? Check out Valparaiso, 90 minutes northwest of Santiago.
What’s on your family’s bucket list for this summer and summers to come? Please share!
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