Winter Activities in Denver, CO
When the snow falls in Denver, throngs of Coloradans and out-of-state guests flock to the High Country to ski or snowboard, but you don't have to make the mountain trek to find awesome sledding hills. Some of the best are close to the city, like Sledding Hill Park in Littleton. Although once slated for commercial development, this land is now owned by Jefferson County Open Space. It's completely vacant during the warmer months but comes to life under a blanket of snow. Expect to see plenty of families enjoying the run, but there is plenty of room. Parking can be a bit of a hassle but the effort is worth it.
When the temperature drops in Denver, you'll hear many people say, "it's Stock Show weather." For the entire month of January the National Western Stock Show takes over the National Western Complex just north of the city. Step in from the cold and experience the heart of the West. Events include professional bull riding, livestock shows, equestrian competitions, rodeos, art exhibits and Wild West shows. The Stock Show is a Denver tradition that is worth enjoying, especially if you have kids. Be sure to check out the Backstage with a Rodeo Clown program and the mutton bustin' competitions.
When you think of Denver, you may not think of "wine country," but maybe you should. The Mile High City is actually a budding hot spot for wine connoisseurs. The 5280 Wine Tour Company is dedicated to sharing Denver's best kept secret with locals and visitors alike. Private and group tours are available and there are several seasonal events, including the Haunted Tour and the Holiday Lights & Wine Tour. Winter tours start up in February and include stops at three wineries and tasting rooms within the Denver and Boulder areas. Tours usually begin at either 11:30am or 4pm, departure points vary and reservations are required. They have a "no wine snob" policy, so you don't have to feel intimidated if you're not well-versed on vino.
While a mass transportation system may not be considered a "hot destination," Denver's light rail is a bright spot in a chilly winter. Wherever you are in the city, the light rail will make quick and easy work of your commute. Whether traveling for work or pleasure, leave your car at one of the station lots and avoid navigating the icy and snowy roads. You'll have to resist a smirk as you fly by traffic congestion on your way to your destination. Popular stops include the Pepsi Center (don't forget to catch a Nuggets game), the Convention Center/Theatre District, the University of Denver, Invesco Field and Union Station.
While the Colorado is known for the Rocky Mountains, it is also known for a large number of microbreweries, many of which can be found around the Denver metro area. This winter, explore your love for handcrafted beers by joining a Denver Microbrew Tour. Visit four of Denver's most celebrated microbreweries and enjoy Denver's hip LoDo (lower downtown) neighborhood. Your tour guide will fill you in on the history of beer, the role of microbreweries in Denver, beer trivia, the brewing process and the many variety of beers. End your tour with a pint of your favorite with your fellow beer enthusiasts. You'll be walking between stops but if you dress warmly, the brisk air will do you good in between samplings.