Ultimate Winter Getaways

From backcountry huts and wintertime glamping to poolside lounging and hot spring soaking, we’ve found more than 20 places in Colorado (and beyond!) that you should visit this season.

November 2012

Vee Bar Guest Ranch • Near Laramie, Wyoming / $ (For Families)

Tucked into the preamble of the Snowy Range mountains, the Vee Bar Guest Ranch leads a double life in southern Wyoming. In the summer, this 800-acre property hosts patrons looking for the quintessential guest ranch vacation complete with horseback riding, cattle drives, fishing, and line dancing. In the winter, though, Vee Bar morphs into an isolated bed-and-breakfast that’s the perfect launching-off point for wintry activities like skiing, snowshoeing, and snowmobiling. Or, if relaxation sounds good, Vee Bar’s peaceful location—and well-stocked saloon—offers that, too.

Who It’s For: Families. The kids can roam the grounds, exploring the Little Laramie River if it’s not too cold, while the adults read a book next to the fire.

Get A Room: Vee Bar’s cabins offer a more spacious and private retreat.

The Best Part: Breakfast. Don’t miss the sunflower-seed bread or the house-favorite granola with oats, coconut, almonds,
and cranberries.

Book It: Rates start at $150 per night during the winter; veebar.com; 1-800-483-3227


The Ranch at Rock Creek • Philipsburg, Montana / $$$ (For Couples)

If you’ve never been glamping—or don’t even know what the hell glamping is—you’re in for a treat at the Ranch at Rock Creek. This two-year-old luxury guest ranch has a variety of traditional lodging options; however, the glamorous camping (get it?) tents nestled along Rock Creek are a must for anyone with a sense of adventure. At more than 600 square feet in size and decorated better than your home’s master suite, these canvas outposts make you feel like you’re sleeping in a tent—without having to wrestle with a sleeping bag. Beyond the unique accommodations, the Ranch at Rock Creek is also one of the best guest ranches to visit in the colder months. With on-site ice skating, snowmobiling, sledding, sleigh riding, and cross-country skiing, the ranch is just as much fun in January as it is in June. 

Who It’s For: Couples looking to splurge for a special occasion.

Get A Room: The ranch offers glamping for couples or families. For couples looking for an ultra-private getaway, ask about the Trapper Cabin.

The Best Part: Winter paintballing. Need we say more?

Bonus: Meals and most activities are included in the nightly rate, which means you don’t feel nickeled-and-dimed while you’re on vacation.

Book It: Depending on the lodging option you choose, nightly all-inclusive rates range from $950 to $7,500; theranchatrockcreek.com; 1-877-786-1545


Victor Hotel • Victor, Colorado / $ (For Explorers)

Winfield Scott Stratton, a prospector, capitalist, and philanthropist originally from Indiana, discovered the Independence Lode on July 4, 1891, just outside the settlement of Victor, Colorado. His discovery, which became an incredibly successful gold mine, ignited the blitz of gold rushers who descended on the area and built the town. The building now known as the Victor Hotel was originally erected in 1899 as a bank, but through the years it has hosted a hospital, restaurants, and myriad offices. Today, the hotel has a small-inn ambience that’s reinforced by the feminine decor and simple accommodations. But what makes the Victor a must-visit for many is its status as a haunted hotel. It is rumored that long-since-departed residents still roam the hotel’s hallways. Eddie, a former resident of the third floor who tumbled to his death when he stepped into an elevator shaft, is said to haunt the antique Otis birdcage-style elevator that still operates today.

Who It’s For: History buffs looking to explore nearby landmarks such as the Cripple Creek Mining District, the Gold Belt National Scenic Byway, and nearby towns like Manitou Springs.

Get A Room: For a night of ghost hunting, request a room on the fourth floor, which was formerly a hospital and morgue.

The Best Part: The hotel is surprisingly affordable; rooms start at $50.

Book It: victorhotelcolorado.com; 719-689-3553