NEDERLAND, Colo. (CBS4) – One of the great things about Colorado is the plethora of winter activities that are close to the Denver metro area. One is the Eldora Ski Area near Nederland, and it is easy to reach in all kinds of weather.
But the weather, especially the wind, can affect what’s available at the area. When the winds get too high, the chairlifts stop running. That’s when skiers forgo the downhill skis and go cross country.
Mark and Ellen Huang chose the nordic route because of the wind.
“Sometimes there’s a nice view of the mountains, Today I think it’ll just be a little bit more of a winter excursion,” said Ellen Huang.
They head out from the Eldora Nordic Center, which actually sits in what is the worst place for winds on the trail systems.
“The whole mountain can be shut down and the Nordic Center often stay opens because the trails are blocked by trees,” said.
Wind doesn’t discourage Duane Haugen, 77, from heading out and enjoying the trails.
“I think they’re beautiful, rolling terrain, ups and downs with a nice kick-and-glide terrain,” he said.
Mike Endicott has skiing at Eldora Nordic Center for 25 years.
“It’s a wonderful place for Front Range skiing. It’s the closest place to the metro area,” he said.
Beginners can find cross-country skiing a bit challenging.
“They are expecting a flat cross-country course, and that’s not what we have here. The upside is if you learn to ski here, you learn how to gut up the hills and get down the hills as a beginner and you can ski anywhere.”
Crews groom the 40 kilometers of trails every night. Sue Herring of Nederland considers the area a private playground.
“What I love about it is that you’re away from everything,” Herring said. “You’re away from the crowds, away from the lift lines, away from the winds, away from the hassles. Nothing is better than being out here and just feeling what the world has to offer you and get a little exercise to boot.”
Visit the nordic center online at eldora.com or call them at (303) 440-8700.