8 Things To Do with Young Children in Crested Butte
While Crested Butte has plenty of adventurous activities for teens and adults, many parents wonder what they can do to entertain their small children while in town. I have two children born and being raised here in Crested Butte, so I know a thing or two about what can keep them busy! Please continue reading for a list of my favorite activities to do with young children in Crested Butte.
- Go Jump in a River – Well, maybe not jump all the way in, but definitely wade in it, throw rocks, make boats out of sticks – you get the idea. One of our favorite spots is up Slate River Road at Gunsight Bridge. Drive up Slate River road a few miles, and there is a pull-off on the left and a sign indicating the bridge. You’ll walk down a little hill to the river. There is the bridge that you can cross and go into the Lower Loop trail area, or you can just bring a blanket and hang out near the river. The view is amazing!
- Crested Butte Mountain Resort Adventure Park – The Adventure Park at the ski resort has entertained my kids for hours and hours. Here you’ll find a bungee trampoline, mini-golf, rock climbing, bag jump plus more. You’ll need to buy tickets at the resort, but the cost can be worth the smiles on their faces.
- Trailhead Children’s Museum – This option is great for a rainy day or young kids. The museum is located at the base area of the ski resort (update 2018 – The Trailhead museum is now located in town at 16 Sixth Street). There are tons of toys for pretend play and a great art area. You can find more information at trailheadkids.org.
- Lake Irwin – Drive up Kebler Pass to this alpine lake for a day of fun. Rent a paddle board in town and cruise around the lake. There is a flat, easy hike around the lake that passes by a little waterfall along the way. Some folks swim in the water, but be careful – it can be cold! The lake is a fun place to fish as well.
- Judd Falls – This is a relatively flat hike that young kids can do. To get there, drive on Gothic Road past the towns of Mt. Crested Butte and Gothic (an old mining town turned biological research center). Continue on the road until you see the sign for Judd Falls. If you go during the summer, you most likely won’t miss it as there will be a lot of cars parked there. To make the hike accommodating for young kids, turn right at the bottom parking lot and drive until you reach the top parking lot. Again, summer is very crowded here, and it might be hard to find a spot at this second parking lot. The hike is easy but a bit rocky. Also, be sure to have your children near you once you get to the falls. There is a big drop off and no railing!
- Visit the playgrounds – There are two main playgrounds in the town of Crested Butte, however, Town Park will be out of commission for the 2017 and 2018 summers due to construction of our new arts center. Town Park is located on the right just after you pull into the town of Crested Butte. Rainbow Park is located at the cross-section of 8th and Maroon Avenue. This is a great park for really young ones. It has nice wide ramps to run on. You can walk past the soccer fields to the bank of the Slate River for some rock throwing and bridge-crossing.
- Letterboxing Hunt – Every year, the Crested Butte Land Trust puts together a letterboxing hunt. What is letterboxing? According to the Land Trust’s website, “Letterboxing is an intriguing outdoor pursuit combining hiking, artistry, and detective work. The clues will take you on an adventure to find hidden stamps.” Once you find a stamp, use it to stamp your booklet and prove to your friends you found the hidden treasure! You can pick up the clues and your stamp book at the Chamber of Commerce for around $5. There will be short and long hikes that lead you to the hidden stamp treasure. This is a great way to get your kids to hike if they moan and groan at the very word!
- Fish at Roaring Judy Fish Hatchery – Pick up a fishing rod and license and head down the highway to the fish hatchery. Here you’ll find stocked ponds your kids can easily throw a line into. According to its website, the hatchery is “a cold water facility and home to the largest kokanee salmon run in the U.S., raises fingerlings and catchables of kolanee salmon, cutthroat and rainbow trout. Part of the hatchery property is an 840 acre wildlife area that is a popular destination for fishing, hunting, and wildlife watching.“
I hope these suggestions keep you and your little ones busy during your time in Crested Butte. Please feel free to contact me with any questions or if you’d like more information about the Crested Butte area!
Would you love to make your time more permanent in Crested Butte? Please contact me at 970-209-2421, email me at GHuresky@LivSothebysRealty.com, or visit my website www.CrestedButteHomes.com to learn about real estate options in Crested Butte.