- The Western Slope in the Winter
Not everyone comes for the ski resorts. There are a myriad of other outdoor activities to get in touch with the snow. Snow shoeing is a great way to experience the forest. Sunlight Mountain Resort has a snowshoeing path just for taking your dogs on.
Cross country skiing is another option. For Sunlight’s options, read this article.
Aspen Trail Finder’s take on X Country Skiing the 4 mile area, is here.
Check out the Spring Gulch Nordic Center.
And the Aspen Snowmass Nordic Trail Center.
Snowmobiling clubs or tours are a great way to get your adrenaline pumping and experience the magic of the forest.
The eastern side of the Grand Mesa is the area of the Vega Lodge. No one has guided more tours here than this guy, Luke Dobbs, and this is his facebook post about how to get guided on snowmobiles this winter.Hello, Howdy and good day to ya my Friends, Family and fellow Snowmobilers! Wanted to let ya’ll know that I will be Riding and Renting Snowmobiles out of Vega Mountain Lodge this winter.I will have Nice 800 and 850 Mountain Sleds and single and 2 up Trail sleds available with Guided trail tours Day trips and Backcountry rides. I will also still be doing my Awesome and Educational(Ride Wild With Wildman) Snowmobiling clinics and Day trips for Novice and Beginner riders.Vega is located 10 miles up Hwy 330 East of Collbran Colorado right on the Edge of Grand Mesa National forest. With a average of 35 feet of snow and access to 800,000 acres of unrestricted Backcountry riding and roughly 800 miles of trails right from your Cabin, this is a Winter playground for Snowshoeing Ice Fishing and a must see Snowmobiling paradise for all levels of rider.The Beautiful lodge is remotely located right on Vega Lake with 10 rustic cabins ranging from $95 a night for a 2 person cabin to $300 a night for 11 person cabin. Full Restuarant and Bar, Gift shop and all the modern amenities not found many places around here-flushing toilets! This is a great place to stay and play away from the hustle and bustle of the Bussiness world and have a true unforgettable experience away from it all!And the best part is, you don’t have to go far to enjoy all the wild life and great outdoors…they are right outside your cabin door!Call the Lodge and talk toJerri (MJ) or Kristyand Book your winter Adventures with Me and Vega Mountain Lodge Today!!and we will see you on the mountain!!Please share my friends!Vega Lodge (970)487-3733
Ice fishing is a great activity that doesn’t involve flying down a scary mountain. Go ice fishing at Ruedi Reservoir, Rifle Gap, or Harvey Gap but not right now because this fall is dressed in the garb of an Indian Summer!
Finally, there’s one of my favorite activities, sitting by the fire with a good book.
Farther west there are even more opportunities. Fall seems to extend itself endlessly when its dry, so there are great mountain biking conditions in the late fall in the Palisade, Grand Junction and Fruita areas.
- Aspen the Winter Wonderland
Everyone knows that Aspen is a major vacation destination, and this year is experiencing Co-vid restrictions. On the one hand, no one wants there to be irreparable damage to the small businesses that create the warmth of hospitality in this town. On the other hand, everyone wants to stay safe.
I was in the process of creating a business for travelers– its a private car and concierge service called Western Slope Adventures. An upsell of a car service is advertising. I was becoming more and more interested in marketing due to my burgeoning real estate sales career. I had started my own advertising LLC a couple of years before, called Pattern Full but I wasn’t really doing anything with it. What should a real estate agent do to showcase their area? Well create a travel guide of course.
The car service idea just came out of how poorly the uber experience was for the driver. Being surveilled by an app doesn’t work great in the mountains. Sitting outside someone’s house in Snowmass pushing the arrived button but messages not sending. The lack of relationship between employer and employee is not to be replicated. Adding an errand stop into the route is a major pain.
I realized that the business of car and concierge service can easily shift because people staying in may need a concierge to run their errands for them, or plan their transportation.
Shifting to buying online then picking up is just a shift in shopping habits. It makes us wonder if we all need to be on the streets or if an errand service makes sense.
This winter seems like a great time to visit the Aspen Art Museum.
You can easily spend hours exploring the Aspen Institute’s website.
Check out events you may be interested in.
People on the Aspen Reddit are up in arms that anyone may be here, but it needs to be recognized that many of the so called visitors are actually property owners visiting their second homes.
You don’t need a special agenda in Aspen. Just walking around outside can be magical enough. Or looking out the window at the snow.
If you want to buy a home in Aspen let me know!
- Transportation Options in the Roaring Fork Valley
Transportation in the Roaring Fork Valley and Western Slope is trickier than in other parts of the country because of the population pockets.
Traveling by Amtrack will be the closest thing to experience arriving in Glenwood Springs the way the early industrialists did.
Grand Junction has a Greyhound bus station.
The Bustang takes people to and fro Denver.
There are several park and rides around the Valley that are the appropriate places to leave a car while carpooling.
If you drive an electric vehicle and you want to recharge, the Marriott in the Meadows in Glenwood Springs has charging stations.
The way the transportation situation has affected the real estate market is that people around here tend to have more vehicles than city folk. For example a camping trailer, trailer with a raft on it, trailer for snowmobiles, dump trailers, horse trailers, and boats. This makes having No HOA regulating what can be on your driveway, or living in an HOA with lax rules around parking, become desirable housing traits for some people.
People taking RFTA on a daily basis prefer to live near a bus stop.
If you need a private car service to give you a ride and or do your errands, check out Western Slope Adventures.
Finally, Western Slope Adventures also does referrals for private air options.
- Country homes dot the Roaring Fork Valley
Seems like everyone wants to get out of the city, to someplace they can socially distance outside and be inspired by the mountains. I get the request all the time as a real estate agent, find me something with a couple of acres.
Here in the Valley, its almost as though you need to choose your elevation.
In the higher elevations, like the Grand Mesa, a house with acreage may look like a cabin in the woods.
In lower elevation, it could be acreage for a horse facility you’re looking for.
Near the Colorado River or towards the Roaring Fork lies the most fertile farmlands.
In the Aspen/Glenwood multiple listing services the searches for homes on acreage go in the following increments.
1-3; 4-5; 6-10; 11-20; 21-34
101 or more
Tell me what area you want, which acreage increment to look in, and I can set up a subscription search. If you subscribe to the search, you’ll be alerted as soon a home fitting your criteria hits the market.
I know all about life in rural areas. I spent a life time riding horses, having chickens, and enjoying rural life. I have also sold a number of rural properties so I’m familiar with how to deal with wells, septic issues, and irrigation concerns.
A little elbow room. Sometimes I feel like its what Western Colorado was made for.
If you have an agricultural based business and you’re looking to grow, check out my listing at 6072 County Rd 214 in New Castle, Colorado 81647.
These 9 irrigated acres are in the heart of the most fertile area known as Peach Valley. Already home to numerous growing operations and horse farms, you won’t find a more illyic setting to grow your agribusiness.
Ok now for indulging in the best photos.
If you’re actually a ranching person you may enjoy
Western Slope Farm and Garden is a pretty random swap.
Let me know if want to plant your pin of civilization near the wild.
- Plans to Protect the Environment in the Roaring Fork Valley
Its no surprise that when you’re inspired by the wonder of the mountains and the forests we all want to protect them for later generations to experience.
The Roaring Fork Conservancy has a watershed plan.
Conservation Colorado has a new office in Carbondale.
Aspen Valley Land Trust is an organization whose mission is to protect the working lands, wildlands, and wonderlands of the Roaring Fork and Colorado River valleys.
ACES Aspen Center for Environmental Studies has programs for all ages that help us explore nature.
Finally, just pick up the trash that you see. There is nothing sadder than going camping, deep in the White River National Forest and seeing trash. Its always great to review the Leave No Trace principles.
Find out more about recycling in Pitkin County.
If you have something you’re not sure how to dispose of, check out the Green Zone in Silt.
Have a great day being inspired by the beauty of the Roaring Fork Valley and Western Colorado!
- My Favorite Mountain Towns
Ok ok ok ok, you all know my favorite towns are the ones in my service area.
If you want the real estate stats, constantly updated click on these links. Aspen, Basalt, Redstone, Carbondale, Marble, Glenwood Springs, New Castle, Silt, Rifle, Parachute, Collbran, Palisade, Grand Junction, and Fruita.
I wrote about the communities in my service area from the Traveler’s perspective on Western Slope Adventures. Get a general feel for each community here Aspen, Basalt, Carbondale, Redstone, Marble, Glenwood Springs, New Castle, Silt, Rifle, Parachute, Palisade, Grand Junction, and Fruita.
I also wrote about these communities more from a real estate development perspective here on Western Slope Home Pros. Aspen, Basalt, Carbondale, Redstone, Marble, Glenwood Springs, New Castle, Silt, Rifle, Parachute, Collbran, Palisade, Grand Junction, and Fruita.
So, I have to exclude all the wonderful towns in my service area for this post. What are my other favorite mountian towns?
Silverton for sure because riding a utv in the center of town is fun, the camping is amazing, views, high mountain lakes, trails, trees, its paradiasical.
Steamboat Springs is so gorgeous. All the farmland on the way, high mountain lakes and small enough for me,
Moab for the serpentine trail overlook point, for the forest on the edge of town, for Arches,
Leadville because it reminds us of a bygone age, the mining era is evident. Skijoring has to be the best activity a cowgirl ever thought of. No one that is not a mountain person could ever love Leadville. Twin Lakes because people are overrated.
Gateway has a mysterious sense to it and its evident ancestral peoples and animals lived there.
- Local food in the Roaring Fork Valley and Western Slope
One of the things that the spring covid restrictions made us reflect upon is “where does food come from, if not the grocery store?”
Great news, friends, it comes from the ground.
Carbondale is known for its potatoes! Corn, garlic, squash, and veggies grow here! Local beef is raised! There are pigs and goats and game galore.
Further west, the food scene in Palisade is incredible. Lavender, honey, wine, peaches, and other orchard harvest fill out the farmer’s markets.
Osage Gardens in New Castle grows and sells food.
New Castle Gardens has great flowers in the summer as well as starter vegetables, soils, and gardening gear.
Skips Farm to Market has a Basalt and a Silt location.
Rock Bottom Ranch has a local harvest dinner.
Two Roots Farm produces food for local restaurants.
There’s always having a garden yourself. I even know a professional gardener who will manage your home garden for you!
If you’re looking to join the scene of local agriculture, look no further than my listing at 6072 County Rd 214 in New Castle.
- Resources in the Roaring Fork Valley
Here in the Roaring Fork Valley and Western Slope I find people’s kindness and generosity expressed all over the place.
Gifting Across the Valleys is a private facebook group.
There’s the Crystal Valley Mutual Aid group.
Lift Up has information concerning where to get food.
The River Center in New Castle is a wonderful resource.
Stay safe, warm and fed. If you need something, say something!
- Security Options for your Home
Do you feel a need to lock your doors at night? The more rural the area, the less likely, due to other security measures being in place. One easy way to know if someone unexpected is on your property is to have some dogs. This is not a great option if you’re a renter.
Another way I’ve seen quite a bit is to set up a motion sensing game camera where you’re interested to see who is walking by.
The leading products available these days include
Check out the Reddit Group about Home Security.
Next read this interesting comparison article on Porch.
Or see how the comparison of best home security systems is broken down on cnet.
The best home security systems are great at catching criminals. There is a side effect during real estate showings, however. Your buyer’s agent should tell you to not gasp in awe and gush over a property at the property because you may be being recorded, and your overwhelming desire for the home is not in your favor in negotiations. Not talking about the home while you’re in the home is hard! Listing agents are supposed to disclose whether or not surveillance is occurring, but it could be since many devices are motion or voice activated.
I like to jot down notes as I tour the home.
To find the next home you’ll secure, contact me.
- Let’s Get Social
Western Slope Home Pros Facebook page exists to promote your business if it fits into one of our categories and you’re committed to excellent client service. Check out these social pages and let me know if I can help your business gain visibility.
Western Slope Home Pros Pinterest, Facebook Page and YouTube channels will be for promoting local businesses in our directory.
You can see all the brands I promote on social media on PatternFull.
Check out this article on using Social Media for Customer Service.
Here’s a cool article on 5 brands to learn from on Social Media.
I like to use my website platforms and social media sites for what they are for. For example, I tweet my listings and real estate news.
I update LinkdIn with my business happenings.
My real estate blog is about rooms in the home, real estate, and the areas I serve.
My property management blog is about real estate investing as a way to grow wealth.
Western Slope Adventures is to feature vacation rentals, restaurants, and small businesses.
I’m interested in promoting various aspects of the Roaring Fork Valley and Western Slope, and I want to do so in a context where they fit.
I see social media as a central component of modern communications. I want to dive deeper into integrating my values with my social media usage.