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A soggy day at Keystone during the shoulder season. Photo by Lindsey McKissick

Don’t Rule Out Mud Season Travel

Take advantage of quiet resorts and big deals before the kids get out of school for the summer.

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The slim six-week window when ski resorts transition from snow to summer is the perfect time to take a quiet vacation before the kids are out of school for three full months. Here are tips for your low-key, off-season getaway:

Book Your Digs: Wandering through a ski resort during the between-season lull can feel like you’re visiting a ghost town. You might just be the only group staying in an entire condo complex—which is good news for you. Lodging specials are prevalent in resort hotels, AirBnB stays, and managed condo properties. Here are a few deals to check out:

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Prep the Meals: Restaurant hours, especially in ski resort villages, can be, well, spotty during mud season. Call ahead to make sure your dining spot is open and to find out if they have off-season hours. But don’t dismiss the idea of a night in. If you have a cook among your companions, put together a menu, divvy up kitchen duties, and enjoy a un-rushed meal. Pro tip: Collaborate on a grocery list from King Soopers’ new online Clicklist. They’ll do the shopping and load it up in your car as you head for the mountains.

Check the Deals: If your idea of mud weekend fun actually includes mud—like spa mud—the resorts are ready for you. The RockResorts Spa at the Arrabelle in Vail is discounting most of its treatments, including a 50-minute massage or facial for $99 and 20 percent off manicures and pedicures through June 16. The Keystone Lodge and Spa is doing good while making you feel good by inviting you to bring in canned food in exchange for a hefty cut off your spa bill through May 26. For six cans of food, you get 30 percent off a single massage, facial, or body wrap. For three cans, nab 15 percent off of a pedicure, manicure, wax, or hair service.

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