Ski the Minturn Mile


Added by Kyle C

A simple descent to end your day at Vail, or a backcountry ski outing if starting from Minturn.

The Minturn Mile is best accessed after spending the day at Vail, but can be done so with skins and skis from the base.  This description will assume you have access to the lifts at Vail by parking at one of the many resort/town parking areas.  From either the top of Game Creek Express or Wildwood Express, follow the ridge southwest until you reach a point where you can either descend to your left towards Sundown Bowl, or take off your skis and hike uphill.  The track here should be pretty obvious.  If you brought skins and have a backcountry set up, you can set up here, and if not it is only a short 20 minute hike to the back country gate.

If you are comfortable with the avalanche forecast and the directions, continue through the gate.  The first portion descends an open moderate bowl that contains some avalanche danger.  Once you descend into the trees where the grade becomes more gradual.  You will follow the game creek drainage for a short time until you reach a larger opening that is largely flat which means that snowboarders might have to unstrap.  Once you make it through this section, the trail is a narrow gradual slope to a street.  In the late season, there can be rocks and dirt poking through the snow so be mindful, but it is a fun ride regardless.

At the bottom, you will come to a residential area where you can pack up and walk a short distance into the town of Minturn where you can enjoy food and drinks at any one of the various restaurants.  Once done there, just catch a ride back to your car in Vail!

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