I love this new family event at Snowmass this winter: Ullr Nights! Activities for the whole family take place at the top of the Elk Camp gondola Friday nights from 5:30 to 9:30 p.m. For a $10 evening gondola lift ticket ($5 for children or season pass holders), guests can enjoy sledding on a small hill and skating on a brand new outdoor rink (skate rentals are free). The Viking Ghost Ship made of snow has a fun slide, and there are even a few small features at the Elk Camp Meadows learning area for kids to explore if they have their skis or snowboard (and helmet) with them. You can also rent snow skates and get tips from an on-site ski pro.
A roaring bonfire sets the tone for more outdoor winter fun, with marshmallows, chocolate and graham crackers for sale to make s’mores. Fire dancers make an appearance at 7:15 p.m. Still more options for outdoor activities: intermediate skiers ages 12 and up can sample snow biking ($69) with a guided tour and instruction, while Aspen Center for Environmental Studies offers evening snowshoe tours ($35).
Inside the new Restaurant at Elk Camp, there’s live music, children’s arts-and-crafts activities and an a la carte menu that includes selections from the restaurant — typically a special entree, pizza, calzones, kids’ items and the salad bar available. Mom and Dad: the bar is open for business, too!
I think it’s great that Aspen/Snowmass is opening up the mountain Friday nights for family fun. Ullr Nights are a fabulous way to continue to enjoy the great outdoors even after the sun goes down! (And by the way, the name of the event is a nod to the Scandinavian mythical god Ullr, patron saint of skiers.)
Photo credit: Courtesy Aspen/Snowmass.