Under blue skies for more than 300 days each year, Vail is the world’s premier mountain resort destination. The year-round alpine destination delivers a superior, seamless experience for every guest, from the vast terrain and natural grandeur of the surrounding Gore and Sawatch Ranges to world-class events, shops and spas, and the abundant culinary options and luxurious accommodations that line the pedestrian-friendly streets of Vail and Lionshead Villages. Vail offers over 5,300 acres of developed ski and snowboard terrain, including seven limitless Back Bowls in winter and summer mountaintop dining and activities. Coupled with the enduring spirit of innovation inherent in Vail’s founders, and a timeless pursuit of excellence in all aspects of guest service and operations, Vail is like nothing on earth.
Protecting our Outdoors: Sustainable Travel in Vail
Our mountains are our business and our future, but most importantly, they’re our home. As a company deeply rooted in the great outdoors, we’re committed to achieving a zero net operating footprint by 2030 across all 41 of our resorts—including Vail Mountain. Our industry-leading Commitment to Zero creates the opportunity for one mountain resort company to have a big impact on preserving the environment through its three pillars: zero net emissions, zero waste to landfill, and zero net operating impact on forests and habitats.
Each of our resorts in Colorado is doing its part to move us closer to a zero net operating footprint, from composting and recycling to energy efficiency and land stewardship. You’ll find our Commitment to Zero is pervasive throughout all of Vail Mountain’s summer activities, spotlighting our natural environment and working with local and national partners to create eco-discovery experiences all summer long.
2023 Summer Activities
With a focus on kid-friendly activities, helping them engage with the outdoors in a playful way, Vail Mountain’s mountain-top activities create a deeper connection with nature. Vail Mountain continues its focus on the environment and operating sustainably, with key partnerships with local and national organizations such as the National Forest Foundation, White River National Forest Ski Conservation Fund, the Nature Conservancy, Walking Mountains Science Center, Eagle Summit Wilderness Alliance, and more. Kids and adults can expand their horizons through these eco-discovery experiences, promoting education and awareness of our unique mountain environment.
- Forest Flyer™: This gravity-based alpine coaster allows guests on individual sleds to descend on a raised track through the forest while giving riders full control of their speed.
- Summer Tubing: High atop Vail Mountain at Adventure Ridge, grab a tube and hop a ride on Vail’s summer tubing hill. A new take on the mountain tubing adventure, summer tubing allows guests to feel the thrill of the mountain, just like winter tubing on snow. Both Eagle’s Nest Tubing and Marmot Mini Kids Tubing will be available.
- Paramount Peak Rock Climbing Wall: Guests can navigate their way up 36 feet of rock face, choosing between 16 routes to the top. This is the second-tallest permanent outdoor climbing wall in Colorado.
- Bungee Trampoline: Soar to new heights on the bouncing bungee-harnessed trampoline.
- Little Eagle Zipline: Kids aged five and older, between 30 and 100 lbs, will enjoy flying through the air on the single-zipline spanning nearly 200 feet.
- Interactive Trail System: Fireweed and Eagle’s Loop Trail transform into a wilderness exploration trail with the addition of story stakes that feature mountain flora and fauna and a series of animal ability installations that each resemble an animal’s vision, stride, agility, and strength. Vail has partnered with the United States Forest Service and Walking Mountains Science Center to bring interpretive elements to the summer experience.
- Gore Creek Mini Golf: Family-friendly putting returns to the Lionshead base area for another summer season. Children and adults of all ages can practice putting their “hole-in-one” on Vail Mountain’s nine-hole mini golf course. Located in front of the Lionshead summer ticket office, the course features a unique interpretive animal theme that spotlights different local animal species at each hole.
- Gondola One and the Eagle Bahn Gondola: Enjoy scenic rides and bike hauls on Gondola One and the Eagle Bahn Gondola this summer, offering views of magnificent peaks and various trails for hiking and biking. Ride to Eagle’s Nest on the Eagle Bahn Gondola, where you’ll also find dining options and adventurous activities for all ages and abilities at your fingertips.
- Nature Discovery Center & Guided Nature Hikes: Ride the Eagle Bahn Gondola to the Nature Discovery Center, an all-season yurt, at Eagle’s Nest. Join a guided nature walk with an expert naturalist from Walking Mountains Science Center and learn how plants and animals adapt to the high-elevation alpine environment as you identify signs of life on Vail Mountain. The Nature Discovery Center is a community-based partnership between Vail Resorts, the United States Forest Service and Walking Mountains and has provided the visiting public with meaningful access to the wonders of the natural world since opening its doors in 2000. Please come prepared to spend an hour outside in the dry summer environment with appropriate clothing, hiking boots, and water. Walks are provided compliments of Vail Resorts, the Forest Service and Walking Mountains.
Enjoy Nature on Foot and Bike
Vail Mountain and the surrounding valley offer expansive trail networks for the outdoor enthusiast that wind through lush forests, brilliant wildflowers, and native wildlife to provide breathtaking views of the surrounding environment.
Hiking and Trail Running on Vail Mountain
Vail Mountain offers a wide variety of hiking trails for you to choose from, encompassing more than 20 miles. All ages and abilities can take advantage of trails that offer the chance to escape into nature. A few favorites include:
- Eagle’s Loop: Short, “green” ridge-top loop with great Mount of the Holy Cross views. (1 mile)
- Fireweed Loop: Beautiful wooded trail between Eagle’s Nest and Mid-Vail. (1 mile)
- Berrypicker: This intermediate trail offers a steep climb from Vail Village or Lionshead through peaceful aspen trees and wildflowers up to Eagle’s Nest. Or, wind down the trail from Eagle’s Nest into town. (3.2 miles)
- Ridge Route: Intermediate climb from Eagle’s Nest to Wildwood and back with spectacular views of Mt. of the Holy Cross and the Sawatch Range. (1.4 miles)
- Grand Escape: This trail offers an alternative hiking experience with spectacular views of the Gore Range. (1.1 miles)
- Cabin Trail: This intermediate trail offers a scenic hike through the forest up to Mid-Vail. (2.1 miles)
Mountain Biking on Vail Mountain
Vail’s mountain bike trails suit the amateur and the seasoned professional. Family cruisers can ride the gondola, explore the forests on two wheels and enjoy a mountaintop barbeque. Downhill junkies can ride uphill and then seek out the most technical terrain for their descent. Vail Mountain encompasses more than 40 miles of mountain biking trails, and some of the many include:
- Lower Lucy’s Loop: Beginner loop between Eagle’s Nest and Mid-Vail. (1.6 miles)
- Village Trail: A two-way dirt road navigating the eastern side of Vail Mountain between Mid-Vail and Vail Village. Beautiful views of the town and Gore Range. (5.8 miles)
- Fred’s Lunch: Classic single-track mixing tight, wooded sections with open meadows that lead from Mid-Vail to Lower Gitalong Road, providing spectacular views. (2.2 miles)
- Grand Traverse: Vail’s signature single-track traverses the Back Bowls from Eagle’s Nest, offering excellent views of Mt. of the Holy Cross. Updated in the summer of 2022 to add almost two more miles, the Grand Traverse trail now offers a scenic route all the way to Two Elk Lodge. (5.9 miles)
- Hanks Hideaway: A challenging, winding single-track through aspen groves with an option at the end to return to Vail Village (requires some climbing) or Lionshead. (2 miles)
- Big Mamba: Freeride Biking Trail. An exhilarating combination of flowing rollers and smooth switchbacks that will take you across open meadows, into dense pine forests, and through sunny aspen groves. (2.7 miles)
- Radio Flyer: Freeride Biking Trail. Dozens of banked turns and rollers wind from Eagle’s Nest down through Vail’s lodgepole pine forests. (1.7 miles)
Summer Signature Events
Vail Mountain and the surrounding villages offer a summer full of mountain-town events. Mark your calendar and discover it all here. A few can’t-miss events include:
- GoPro Mountain Games, June 8 – 11: The official kick-off to summer returns with this exciting fusion of adventure sports, art, and live music. The GoPro Mountain Games is the country’s most celebrated festival of adventure sports, where ProAms compete together in a celebration of adventure sports. Learn more here.
- Vail Farmers’ Market & Art Show, June 18 – Oct. 8: Summer in Vail means more than sunshine. It’s also when the iconic Vail Farmers’ Market & Art Show happens every Sunday. With around 40 food vendors presenting artisanal food, art, and gifts, this event will have you returning week after week to walk along Meadow Drive. You may find a hand-poured candle, rustic jewelry, fresh-baked treats, organic produce, and more while you’re there.
- Hot Summer Nights, Select Nights, June 20 – Sept. 7: Claim your spot on the grass at The Amp (locals’ affectionate nickname for the Gerald R. Ford Amphitheater) and boogie down to free live tunes put on by Hot Summer Nights. Find the most up-to-date Hot Summer Nights lineup here.
- BRAVO! Vail Music Festival, June 22 – Aug. 3: The Bravo! Vail Music Festival is a haven for classical and orchestral music fans. From indoor community quartet concerts at Vail Interfaith Chapel to outdoor amphitheater performances amplified by the rugged backdrop of mountains and pine trees, each concert is unforgettable.
- Vail Wine Classic, Aug. 10 – 13: Taste wines from award-winning vineyards spanning California to the French countryside. Delight in more than 300 wine choices at the grand tasting, including Napa Valley zinfandels, Australian cabernets, and Tuscan Chiantis. Or grab some friends and enjoy curated lunch and dinner tastings before lacing up your boots for leisurely wine-paired hikes and nature outings. You’ll also get the chance to ask your burning questions to winemakers and sommeliers during live seminars.
Dine at new heights atop Vail Mountain this summer, from the smokey barbeques at Talon’s Deck and the Mid-Vail Grill to the fast and fun bar service at Bistro Fourteen.
- Talon’s Deck Outdoor Grill: Relax on Vail’s largest deck at the top of the Eagle Bahn Gondola and bask in the spectacular views of the Gore Range and Mount of the Holy Cross while enjoying fresh, delicious food at 10,350 ft.
- Grill: Conveniently located at Mid-Vail at the top of Gondola One, the Grill offers a unique outdoor mountain BBQ experience.
- Bistro Fourteen: Indulge in fun at Eagle’s Nest at the top of the Eagle Bahn Gondola. Bistro Fourteen is a convenient bar to grab drinks and take in breathtaking mountain vistas.
Vail Mountain Summer Fast Facts
Vail Mountain is located 100 miles (160 km) west of Denver, 140 miles (230 km) east of Grand Junction, and is easily accessible via the Eagle Airport, located 35 miles (56 km) to the west, all along the Interstate 70 corridor.
Vail Mountain Season Dates:
- June 16 – Sept. 4: Open Daily from 9:30 A.M. – 4:00 P.M.
- Sept. 8 – Oct. 1: Open Friday – Sunday from 9:30 A.M. – 4:00 P.M.
- Vail Village – Gondola One
- Lionshead Village – Eagle Bahn Gondola (#19)
By the Numbers
- Base Elevation: 8,120 ft. /2,476 m
- Average Daytime Temperature: 75 degrees
Flora & Fauna
- The earliest wildflowers typically bloom in April.
- By July, wildflowers abound, sometimes waist-deep in mountain meadows.
- By mid-September, leaves from the aspen trees that engulf the Vail Valley turn a brilliant gold, lasting about three weeks.
- Wildlife is often viewed in the backcountry and includes foxes, deer, elk, marmots, beavers, coyotes, moose, black bears, and bighorn sheep.
- During the 1800s, Ute Indians and pioneer hunters roamed the peaceful valley that is present-day Vail.
- In 1854-56, mountain explorers Jim Bridger and Lord Gore explored the area. The high mountain peaks surrounding Vail to the east were named the Gore Range by Bridger in honor of his friend.
- In the 1940s, a group of ski enthusiasts from the U.S. Army’s 10th Mountain Division were exposed to the area’s majestic mountains while training at Camp Hale near Leadville during World War II
- Following the war, veteran 10th Mountain Division soldiers Pete Seibert, Bill “Sarge” Brown, and Bob Parker returned to the Gore Valley with dreams of establishing a ski area in the beautiful mountain area. Through hard work and endless dreaming, Vail was established by the trio in 1962.
More information will become available closer to our summer kickoff via our social media channels (IG/FB/Twitter: @VailMtn) and on the web at vail.com!