When you’re pals with the best in the biz for outfitting adventures, you don’t travel without them. Huckberry and CYTIES have a perfect friendship; we cover the travel guide, and they take care of the gear (a win, win). This time we’re headed to the diamond in the San Juan Mountains, a place nestled in a box canyon amid forested peaks. We’re talking about the idyllic mountain town of all mountain towns, Telluride. Below is our city guide for spending a long weekend of adventuring, eating, drinking, and exploring this former victorian mining town turned world-renowned destination for modern explorers of all kinds.
HOW TO GET THERE
Telluride’s most significant asset of feeling so remote is also its biggest challenge. There are a few different ways to arrive at this snowy oasis, and one is to fly into The Montrose Regional Airport (MTJ). This larger runway allows for jet access, and in-season flights are available to Chicago/O’Hare, Dallas/Fort Worth, Houston-Intercontinental, Newark, Atlanta, Salt Lake City, and Los Angeles. Another option is Telluride Regional Airport (TEX) which is 6 miles from downtown. It’s North America’s highest runway at 9,078 ft, feeling somewhat like an Indiana Jones movie set. This airport often closes, and due to the short length of the field, only small propeller aircraft are available.
You can always hit the open road; make sure the snow conditions allow it, and don’t you dare think about driving without the proper rig. After all, the closest traffic lights to Telluride are a good 45 miles away, so it requires a bit more of a driver’s effort to get to.
WHERE TO STAY
Nothing beats the right shelter when you need to melt the icicles off your neck. Look no further than Hotel Madeline, an opulent lodge hidden in the flurries of Telluride’s picturesque San Juan mountains. Warm up in the heated rooftop pool or book a spa day to heal any effects of altitude and adventure. One and two bedroom suites are balconied; each comes with a kitchenette, a generously sized living area, and a sofa bed.
Lumière with Inspirato is a chic stay with ski-in and ski-out access to the slopes and a short trek to the center of Mountain Village. Rooms contain full kitchens, fireplaces, kitchenettes, and pull-out sofas if you bring the crew. Or, you could do as Bond would and book a suite with its own outdoor hot tub. Built for maximum relaxation, the Lumière contains terraced hot and cold pools to soothe the burning calves from a day of carving the hill.
WHERE TO EAT AND DRINK
When the sun rises, head to The Butcher & The Baker for a piping hot coffee and a breakfast sando that will knock your wool socks off. If you need another jolt before the lift, hit The Coffee Cowboy, a converted horse trailer house that specializes in coffee concoctions of all kinds. Lunchtime is best at the casual Brown Dog Pizza. This joint took first place at the 2015 Pizza World Championships hosted in Parma, Italy; that’s street cred if we’ve ever seen it.
Ready for a cold one? Immerse yourself with a draft, or better yet, a brewski made with snowmelt at Telluride Brewing Company’s brewpub tucked away in the corner of Mountain Village; you’ll find it at the base of the Telluride Ski Resort. Smugglers Brew Pub also has some mighty fine suds. If you’re searching for a cocktail, look no further than the rooftop bar of the historic New Sheridan Hotel; it has been quenching travelers’ thirsts since 1891 and is a great place to nestle into if the blizzard is too thick.
Splurge on dinner at the contemporary American restaurant Alfred’s, located at the midway point between gondola stations at 10,551 feet above sea level. A glass of Barolo and a view of the sunset here is simply bucket list material.
WHAT TO DO
The obvious… ride the mountain. This town was once dubbed “To-Hell-You-Ride” for a reason. The Ski Resort boasts incredible views of the San Juan Mountains and is home to more than 2,000 acres of lift-accessible terrain, with 4,425 feet of vertical via 19 lifts and 148 runs—enough to keep any boarder or skier busy. The mountain offers multiple snowy landscapes for all skill levels.
Ready to use that Ice Axe? Ice Climbing is available to book, and Telluride is probably one of the country’s best areas to do so. Hop on a snowmobile for a day trip and rip through a historic ghost town, or get a good sweat with some snowshoeing or alpine skiing. There is no shortage of snow-induced adrenaline fun in Telluride; you just have to pick your lane.
WHAT TO PACK
Obviously, the gear.. but beyond that, make sure you’re warm and ready for every occasion the town will throw at you. We’re not leaving home without these essentials for this Telluride adventure. Each item is picked for performance, field-tested, and approved by Huckberry and CYTIES.
Windzip Jacket in Pine
One word to explain the Wind Zip Jacket would be; clutch. The exterior is built from a nylon and spandex blend for just the right amount of stretch to keep you warm and cozy. The breathable yet water-resistant exterior is ideal for any weather. Toss this in the suitcase to be your go-to, from relaxing at the lodge to a late-night Après Ski at the hotel bar.
The Overland Boot
The Overland Boot is basically a snow plow for your feet. Every detail of its construction was carefully considered to contribute to rugged performance. Unlike other boots built heavy for conditions you’ll see in the mountains, The Overland is light as a feather to part the elements while you’re hitting the snow-covered concrete. With 100% waterproof construction and a duck boot toe box, these boots are simply the best of the best; handling the weather has never felt so comfortable.
You’re not packing for Telluride without the right beanie. This one from Huckberry is ribbed knit, each one crafted in Japan. They’re so damn comfortable you should be buying one in every color. We chose “mustard,” so no matter what activity you’re involved in, the crew can keep an eye on you to catch up while you lead the pack. Plus, we love dipping pretzels in mustard after a day on the mountain.
4 Season Glove w/ Wax Coating
With leather waxed for maximum waterproof ability, and an interior insulated with lightweight Thinsulate (basically a super combo of warmth), the 4 Season Gloves may be the best winter mits ever made. As current temps are dropping below 20 degrees in Telluride, you’ll surely be ready with these all-leather gloves that will handle any extremes the Rocky Mountains harness.
Stoke Lip & Face Balm
Don’t let the cooler temps fool you; ripping through artic wind can chap up the mug more than one would assume. Stoked Goods offer the perfect dopp kitt secret weapon with an all-natural balm for healthy skin, three times the size of normal chapstick. This essential moisturizes, protects, and repairs your skin to keep you… dare we say, stoked.
Wave Duo US
No time for sore muscles in Telluride; you have to get back out there! Therabody is revolutionizing the recovery game with its top-notch gadgets. This vibrating recovery roller cleverly designed for the back, neck, and spine, makes it possible to get after it all, day, long. With five levels of vibration technology for an unparalleled post-workout experience, there is no doubt you’ll be making room in the pack for this one.
We’re headed to the slopes; no time to waste. Until next time, safe travels, folks. We’ll see you in the terminals! For more incredible gear to tailor your CYTIES adventures, head to Huckberry.com.
Butch Cassidy and his “wild bunch” gang robbed the San Miguel Valley Bank in Telluride on June 24, 1889
Telluride is proud to be the home of Telluride Helitrax – Colorado’s sole helicopter ski operation
There are no chain restaurants or shops in Telluride; get your bloomin’ onion elsewhere
During the heady mining days of the late 1800s, the per capita wealth of Telluriders exceeded those living in Manhattan
Wilson Peak, the iconic mountain that represents the beauty of Telluride and its surroundings, is the mountain featured on the Coors beer bottle
Telluride has the only free gondola public transportation system of its kind in North America. Connecting the historical town of Telluride with the resort town of Mountain Village, the gondola cost about $16 million to build in 1996