One of my favorite things to do when we come to Colorado is head 12 miles up Castle Creek Valley where there are about 600 acres of skiing and snowshoeing trails surrounding the ghost town of Ashcroft. It's just beautiful.
And, best of all, about a half hour ski or snowshoe, or 20 minute horse drawn sleigh ride, up sits the Pine Creek Cookhouse where they serve the most delicious hot chocolate, lunch and dinner.
Did I mention the hot chocolate?
This year we went with my parents and nephew Declan. They rode up on the sleigh to for lunch, and we snowshoed up to join them.
After lunch they headed home and we went off on the trails,
ending up back in the ghost town before heading home.
There are only a few buildings left in the old silver mining town that once had a population of 2,500, 6 hotels, 17 saloons, a bowling alley, and even a suburb!
When the decision was made to take the Rio Grande railroad in nearby Aspen in 1887 many of the residents, and the buildings, moved down valley abandoning the town.
A few of the buildings have been restored, mostly to keep them from falling down altogether, but I think the park ranger lives in one.
My favorite building left in the town is one that hasn't been restored much at all.
For some reason, it just cracks me up how the logs on the roof stick out the side of the facade and I love it.