Do you like spending time in the Rocky Mountains? Definitely, there’s a peaceful feeling you get while immersed in the magnificence of nature and endless mountain ranges. In fact, mountain living can bring a sense of calmness that provides the greatest feeling in the world, especially when comparing to our hectic schedules and busy lives. It can be difficult to find time to reset, but it’s necessary. That tranquil feeling we’re constantly longing for is important, which why we should regularly search for ways to unplug. Mountain huts in Colorado might just be your next getaway.
However, many popular or tourist places and areas with easy access become quite crowded, and that can cause them to lose that special feeling.
A brilliant fact about Colorado is that it’s still home to vast areas of pristine nature, and there are many spots where the only other living creatures you may encounter are the local wildlife. The only catch is you have to know where to look.
Consider these mountain huts in Colorado as a perfect break from everyday stresses. Enjoy nature and witness the majestic beauty of the Rocky Mountains from quaint locations.
What’s a Hut?
A hut may be a term that you’re more used to hearing about on sandy beaches in tropical locations, but it’s a name also used for great little houses spread throughout the Rocky Mountains.
The hut systems in Colorado are groups of houses strategically placed throughout the backcountry that allow you to go on extended treks during the snowy winter months.
They give you the safety and ease of having a warm shelter where you can spend the night. In short, mountain huts in Colorado are a system of quaint refuges nestled in the deep Rocky Mountain wilderness.
Some of the huts are a part of systems designed for a specific route, while others are just built alone in certain areas. They can generally accommodate 3 – 20 people per night, and they include
- wood-burning stoves
- sometimes even food
Luckily, most mountain huts in Colorado will give you an idea of what equipment and supplies you will need. It’s important to also be aware of what to expect including looking ahead for weather patterns and talking with others who are experienced trekkers, too.
Cross-Country Skiing vs. Snowshoeing
During the winter, the snow can really pile up in the backcountry. For this reason, most people have to trade their standard hiking boots for some cross-country skis or a pair of snowshoes. Both of them are pretty straightforward activities where the basics can be quickly learned, so don’t worry that you have to be incredibly skilled before you start out.
Safety on Winter Hut Trips
Mountain huts in Colorado can sound intimidating, but it’s not a dangerous activity as long as you are prepared. First and foremost, it involves long treks through the unpredictable wilderness, so you have to have to be in good health and have a strong level of fitness. Also, you need to make sure to bring the correct equipment and adequate supplies. Next, the trails aren’t necessarily well-marked, so you need to have some navigation skills.
This is an activity that’s best done in a group, and as with all journeys into the wilderness, make sure someone at home knows your planned route and schedule. Hopefully nothing will go wrong, but it’s nice to know that someone knows where to look in case you need help.
Make Reservations in the Wilderness?
One of the big reasons for going on winter hut trip in Colorado is the fact that you can really get away from it all and enjoy the peace and quiet offered by the great outdoors. Because of that, it may seem a little ironic that you should make reservations! The huts are often booked up well in advance, so don’t head out without making sure your group has reserved a spot.
This may seem like an inconvenience, but it’s actually good news in disguise. Since the huts have such a strict reservation system, they’re never overcrowded. This means you won’t have too many people disrupting your experience.
There are huts and systems of huts all over the state of Colorado, but there are a few that really jump out.
- Lonesome Hut – This single hut is a great one that’s easily accessible from Winter Park. There’s a 2.5 mile trail that leads to it, and it can hold up to 12 people.
- 10th Mountain Division Hut Association – This system of huts is named in honor of the 10th mountain division which was a special group of U.S. Army soldiers who trained in the mountains of Colorado during World War II. They have 34 huts connected by 350 miles of routes.
- Individual Huts – Many huts are maintained by individuals or small groups, and the 10th Mountain Division Hut Association keeps a handy list of them.
- San Juan Huts – These huts are located in the southern part of the state, and each one can hold eight people.
- Colorado State Parks – These parks have tons of campgrounds, cabins, huts, and yurts that you can reserve.
- Summit Huts – This organization has been maintaining huts since 1987. They currently have four, but they are in the process of expanding, so keep an eye on them!
Benefits of a Winter Hut Trip
Overall, there are a few great reasons to go on a hut trip. For one, it’s a unique and enjoyable way to get some exercise and stay healthy. You’ll get plenty of fresh air, and you’ll forget about the stress in your everyday life. Plus, it’s a rare chance to feel a direct connection to nature in its most unspoiled form, so it will give you nice memories that will stay with you for a lifetime.
When Will You Go?
A winter hut trip in Colorado is an experience that everyone should try at least once. The biggest risk is that you’ll like it so much that you’ll want to go again and again, but that’s not such a terrible problem to have.
So, when will you go on your trip?