Ski Butlers Blog - Matt Bodenchuk

Closing Weekend at Vail

Vail certainly knows how to end the season on a high note.   They are throwing quite the party - bidding farewell to the 2011/2012 ski season.

The final two weekends have been highly anticipated and will certainly soften the blow from a mediocre winter. Although the snowfall wasn’t anything special this year, Vail still has a lot to offer.  Taste of Vail and Spring Back to Vail are the two signature Spring events.  

 Taste of Vail – April 5-7, 2012

In its 22nd year, the Taste of Vail is one of the nation's premier spring food and wine festivals. During the annual three-day event, upwards of 5,000 people will enjoy all that Vail has to offer. Participants at the Taste of Vail will experience Vail Valley's world-class restaurants, fine wines from top wineries around the globe - poured by winemakers and winery owners, along with interactive seminars, auction and dance, the Colorado Lamb Cook Off, apres ski tasting and the popular mountain top picnic sensory extravaganza at the top of Vail Mountain. 

For more info visit:

 Spring Back to Vail – April 9-15, 2012

Closing Weekend at Vail takes a different approach.  Rather than fine wines and eloquent dining, Spring Back to Vail is more of a party. It is the epitome of Spring Skiing at its finest. Board shorts, bikinis and the World Pond Skimming Championships are just some of the fun that goes on.  This year Vail has outdone itself by offering 4 consecutive days of unbelievable music – and it’s all free!

Grace Potter and the Nocturnals
Thursday, April 12 
Ford Park
Venue opens at 7:00 pm  - Music starts at 8:00pm
Thievery Corporation
 Friday, April 13 
Ford Park
Venue opens at 6:00pm -  Music starts at 6:30pm 
JJ Grey & Mofro
Saturday, April 14 
Venue opens at 6:00pm  -  Music starts at 6:30pm
Sunday, April 15 
Venue opens and music begins at 4:00pm
Thank you from all of us at Ski Butlers Vail.  See you next season!

Tags: vail

Vail Back Bowls - Hallelujah!

Back Bowls – Hallelujah!
If you haven’t heard…The Back Bowls are open.  Over 50” of new snow has fallen in the last couple weeks and Ski Patrol is opening new terrain on a daily basis. It seems as if every day another group of my friends are telling stories about how they were the first ones to ski Champagne Glade, or how they were ready and waiting as Ski Patrol dropped the ropes at the top of China Bowl - taking turn after turn in the seemingly endless field of untracked snow.  Like a painter with a fresh canvas, they make their own tracks.   4,000+ acres are now open and the conditions are becoming reminiscent of last year.  People are hooting and hollering down the mountain and everyone in the lift line is bragging about the fresh stash they just found – eagerly waiting to get back up the chair.  Powder skis are starting to make a regular appearance and the excitement has returned to the Vail Valley.  
Check it out for yourself – “Vail Powder 26 inches in a week” (this will get your blood flowing) -
The first ever Winter Teva Mountain Games presented by Eddie Bauer will come to the Vail Valley Feb. 10-12.  Professional and amateur athletes from all over the world will converge in Vail to celebrate adventure sports, music, art and the great outdoors.   Competitions will include mixed climbing, dual slalom biking, telemark and Nordic skiing, snowshoe racing and ski mountaineering.  Most locals are looking forward to the Vertical Challenge event.  Vail’s back bowls stretch an impressive 7 miles, covering 2,734 acres.  If you think you can ski all seven back bowls in one day, then this is something you might also want to look in to – it is open to the public! 
We are also very excited that Vail has continued the Bud Light Street Beat concert series for the 13th consecutive season.  Every Thursday evening, ending April 12, locals and guests alike can enjoy free music in the streets of Vail.  It is definitely worth checking out. 
With free events virtually every weekend and snow totals continuing to climb - it is a good time to be in the Vail Valley.  There is an underlying feeling amongst locals that the weather pattern has indeed shifted and this spring could turn out to be one for the ages.
Big thanks to all of our loyal customers out there. 
Hope to see you soon in the Valley! 
Team Ski Butlers Vail

Tags: vail

A Summer of Cycling in the Rockies

A Summer of Cycling in the Rockies

It’s hard to beat summer in the Rockies.  It seems as if the last month has been sunny and 75 every day - pretty perfect for a bike ride.

The Vail Valley is proud to host two stages of the USA Pro Cycling Challenge.  Vail is proud to host stage 3, Thursday, August 25 – the only time trial event of the race which starts in the heart of Vail Village and ends at the top of Vail Pass. On Friday, August 26, riders will depart from downtown Avon on their way to Steamboat Springs.  The USA Pro Cycling Challenge is expected to be the largest spectator event in Colorado history, and one of the largest sporting events to ever take place in the United States.  128 of the top riders in the world will compete for seven consecutive days, covering a distance of 518 miles through the rugged Rocky Mountains.   

Stage 1 (Aug. 23) consists of a circuit through the town of Salida, followed by a 102 mile trek to Mt. Crested Butte.  Stage 1 will certainly give cyclists their first taste of the lung-grabbing, oxygen deprived Rocky Mountain air.  Riders will gain 3250 feet in elevation over 13 miles, to the top of Monarch Pass.  After the descent, riders will close out the day on an uphill climb from the lower area of Crested Butte, to the finish line on the top of Mt. Crested Butte – the USA Pro Cycling Challenges only mountain top finish.

Stage 2 (Aug. 24) from Gunnison to Aspen will prove to be the most difficult.  This section of the race will summit two 12,000 foot peaks! Riders will leave the town of Gunnison and travel through the Gunnison National Forest.  They will then ascend 2740 feet over 13.7 miles to the top of Cottonwood Pass (12,126 feet above sea level).  After a quick descent, riders will battle the second pass of the day.  Independence Pass (12,095 ft.), arguably one of the most spectacular passes in Colorado, consists of a 6.5% gradient with numerous switchbacks.  After 131 miles, the grueling second stage comes to an end in picturesque downtown Aspen.

Stage 3 (Aug. 25) is the Vail Time Trial.  Starting the heart of Vail Village, riders will ride uphill, 10 miles to the top of Vail Pass.

Stage 4 (Aug. 26) from Avon to Steamboat Springs, should prove to be an easier day.  Without significant climbs or high speed descents, cyclists have numerous opportunities to break away.  The 86 mile trek starts in Avon, passes through Wolcott and ends in downtown Steamboat Springs.

Stage 5 (Aug. 27) consists of a 109 mile race starting in Steamboat and ending in Breckenridge.  Stage 5 should prove to be another stage which will provide ample opportunities for aggressive riding and breakaways. Riders will summit Rabbit Ears Pass, before descending through Kremmling, passing Green Mountain Reservoir and finishing in downtown Breckenridge.

Stage 6 (Aug. 28) from Golden to Denver certainly won’t be a cake walk.  Riders will leave Golden, climb and descend the treacherous 6.1% gradient Lookout Mountain. After an exhausting 1300 feet of elevation gain over 4.8 miles, riders make their way back down the hill and pass through Golden one more time before heading to the Mile High City.  Riders will then make six laps of a five-mile circuit along Speer Boulevard before reaching the finish line in front of Denver’s State Capitol Building, where the winner will be crowned.

I hope all of you reading this will get a chance to view the race yourself.  It is truly an event for the record books. Thank you, as always, from Vail.  Ski Season is just around the corner!

Tags: biking

The Ski Season Comes to an End in Breck

Tags: breck