Once on our vehicles near Alta Lakes, the instructor gives us the safety rundown, “Stay single file because there are a lot of people in the forest today. And by a lot I mean 18 people.” Excited for the scenery and adrenaline rush to come, we rev our engines and are off. After three minutes our guide stops us at the “Oprah turnaround.” Here he gives anyone who’s scared the opportunity to turn around and go back to their hotel room to watch Oprah. Luckily no one takes him up on it and we continue zooming through the snowy forest. We pass a ghost town and the telephone pole where Telluride was the first place to have electricity. Ever in the world. Our destination is a snowy meadow where we get to drive freely until it’s time to head back.
In the winter, the only way to reach those rugged slopes and deserted mining outposts not accessed by ski lift is by Nordic skiing (really hard) or snowmobiling (really fun). Telluride Outfitters runs tours to Dunton Hot Springs and Alta Lakes observatory, where you’ll pass beaver ponds, America’s first AC power lines, and Alta ghost town—in 1875, the main 10-room wooden bunkhouse used to house 180 miners over two 12-hour shifts, each paying $1 a night for the privilege.
Telluride Outfitters runs three main tours that benefit from their relatively high elevation, even in bad years. “Alta Lakes Ghost Town is the go-to,” said Doherty, because its trailhead is only five minutes from the company’s Mountain Village office, allowing 2-hour long tours in the morning, afternoon and evening.
Explore Telluride’s unique and colorful history with a snowmobile tour to a mining-era ghost town.
In Telluride you should take some time out to explore the magnificent backcountry with Telluride Snowmobiles. You can absorb the breathtaking scenery, learn about some of the history of the area, and have a hoot all at the same time!
Explore into the region’s pristine backcountry on a guided snowmobile tour.
We had the most enjoyable experience snowmobiling with Telluride Outfitters today.
— Calvin C.
With a penchant to bring adventure to the masses, they have added summertime adventures to round out their offering.