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    Snowy Flatirons

    Winter Outdoor Activities in Boulder

    There's never been a better time to get outside, and Boulder's beautiful landscape and sunny disposition make it the perfect destination to do so this winter. Come play in nature, fill your lungs with the fresh winter air they've been craving and take a break from the grind.

    1. Experience the Pure Glee of Fat Biking

    The giant, cushy, nubby tires on fat bikes make it possible to ride in just about any weather. And cruising down an otherwise inaccessible, snow-packed trail on a fat tire bike can make you feel like a superhero. Rent yours from Pedego or University Bicycles and head to the scenic Doudy Draw trail, or go on a half-day or full-day fat bike tour with Front Range Ride Guides

    Discover Fat Biking in Boulder

    Woman riding fat biking in the snow in Boulder, Colorado


    2. Discover the Magic of a Winter Hike

    Boulder's trails are especially enchanting in winter. There is a stillness that comes over the landscape and fewer hikers to interrupt your thoughts. You don't need any special gear — just some boots with traction and warm layers (which you may end up peeling off under the warm Colorado sun). Here are 5 winter hikes to try out. For a gentle nature walk, try Wonderland Lake or Sawhill Ponds.

    Group with a dog hiking Chautauqua Flatirons in the winter

    3. Get Your Heart Pumping on Snowshoes or Cross-Country Skis

    There’s nothing like traipsing through a quiet, snow-blanked landscape on snowshoes or cross-country skis to revive your senses in the dull of winter. Check out the stellar Nordic trails at Eldora ski resort, ski right in town at North Boulder Park, or head for the backcountry in Eldorado Canyon State Park (20 minutes away) or Indian Peaks Wilderness (an hour away). Here's where to rent gear.

    Man and woman snowshoeing among the pine trees in Boulder

    4. Play Like a Kid Again on a Sledding Hill

    After a good snowfall in Boulder, you'll be hard-pressed to find any kids who want to stay inside. Stop by McGuckin Hardware for a snow tube, and head to the nearest sledding hill for some good, old-fashioned fun. 

    Families sledding at Scott Carpenter Park in Boulder

    5. Go on a Mural Walk

    If you’re bouncing off your walls at home, come bounce off Boulder’s colorful, art-splashed walls for a change. Over 90 new murals have popped up here in the last two years — 38 of those in the last two months. Grab a hot drink to carry with you, and take a self-guided, behind-the-scenes urban tour of these thought-provoking works. There’s also a guided bike tour available. Find our complete mural guide, with maps, here.

    Woman taking a photo of a woman in front of Street Wise Murals Behind Boulder Theater

    6. Get in Some Skiing at a Colorado Gem

    Colorado is home to 28 ski areas and 11 of the smaller areas are known as the Colorado Gems. Have you skied them all? Eldora Mountain Resort (just 21 miles outside of Boulder) is one of Colorado’s gems and gets to the heart of what skiing is all about — discovery, camaraderie, going up and coming down. Read more about it in the LA Times.

    Group of women posing in ski gear at Eldora Mountain Resort

    7. See a Wonder-Filled Light Display

    During Snow Much Fun (which runs Nov. 22, 2020-Jan. 10, 2021), hundreds of thousands of colorful LED lights illuminate Boulder’s Civic Area, next to the Boulder Dushanbe Teahouse and the Boulder Museum of Contemporary Art, and throughout downtown Boulder, including all along historic Pearl Street. This year will feature fun, themed displays (like a candy cane forest and gumdrop lane) and a map to guide you through downtown and Central Park. It's all free to enjoy on foot! Check Downtown Boulder for the map and updates.

    Lights around tree trucks at the Snow Much Fun event in Boulder

    8. Get Into Bird Watching

    Bird-watching has grown in popularity during the pandemic. It's no wonder. Watching little creatures flit around their own habitat is a complete escape from the day's headlines. Read our bird-watching guide for where to go and what to look for in some of Boulder's most scenic, off-the-beaten-path nature areas.

    Group looking through binoculars for birds at Sawhill Ponds