Telluride, Colorado

Written for:  The Gainesville Times

By: Michael Crowder

     Colorado is seeing some of the best skiing in recent years. Many of the resorts here opened earlier this season than ever before. All were open by thanksgiving. Whether it is the Front Range or the Western Slope your favorite Colorado ski areas are in full swing.

     The town of Telluride offers all the skier could want. With excellent snow conditions and minimal lift lines you could not do much better. The town of Telluride is located so far from a major metropolis that it only attracts those who want to be there. Many of the areas near bigger cities draw large crowds due to their location.

    The town of Telluride is comprised of a wonderful mix of beautiful scenery, local heritage, good times, and big money. A small starter home in this town goes for over one million dollars. Hollywood stars own many of the homes here along with many powerful business leaders.

     In this community of extreme wealth, there is a down home feeling that is almost surprising. As you tour the streets of Telluride all the people you meet are happy and friendly. The shop keepers are courteous and take the time to talk to customers whether they be a famous person or a poor ski bum who just hitch-hiked into town.

     The shops and galleries in this town are some of the finest I have ever seen. You can walk in off the street to view and/or purchase some of the finest art known to the world. In one gallery there was so much fine art that we didnít even take much time to view the Picasso.

     You can find the finest in Native American and contemporary jewelry also. Whether you budget is 10 dollars or 10 million you will find something to treasure in this shopping district.

     The ski area descends right down into town. You can step off the street and put on your skis. Telluride has one of the finest mixes of terrain I know of. They have more novice slopes than anywhere I have ever skied. Whether you are a beginner or expert they have all you want in a ski area. I have yet to be in a long lift line here.

     On every run I have been able to ski right back onto the chair lift without a moments wait. With a high-speed gondola and four high-speed quads among the 12 lifts operating, the capacity to keep you moving and not waiting is incredible.

     With reasonable airfare available into Montrose, Colorado access to Telluride is as close as the Atlanta airport. While lodging in Telluride is not out of line for what you get it is still expensive. The more budget conscious can stay in the neighboring towns of Ouray or Ridgeway and save a little money. If you are a skier who has not experienced Telluride then you owe it to yourself to make the journey to one of the finest ski towns in the nation.

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