We put Madeline in one more day of ski school. She willingly went again, and we were so grateful. The rest of us, including Abby, skied straight out the back of the Charter to the Elkhorn Lift. We rode that and then skied the blue runs to get to the main area of the ski resort. We headed up to the top of the mountain and skied down the green runs, but this time Abby took us to some of her favorite runs that she did in ski school. We discovered that we really liked Powell and Piney. The kids had fun going through the Mystic Maze adventure zone. It was basically a fast and curvy narrow run through the trees. Mike and I went down it once and then enjoyed watching the kids speed down it. We had a really fun time skiing together. Eventually Andrew and Peter took off to go do the black runs off of Grouse Mountain while the rest of us stayed on the main part of the mountain until lunchtime. We headed back to the resort and ate lunch and by this point most everyone was tired from the last few days of skiing. When we picked up Madeline, she was beyond done with ski school. She had improved so much over the last few days. She completed everything on her checklist except stopping on command. She was pretty good about stopping some of the time and she even tried going down the steeper magic carpet run because her instructor thought she was ready. After one run of that she was ready to be done. Later that night Mike had a fun date planned for just the two of us. We took a sleigh ride up to Beano’s Cabin where we had the most fantastic dinner. It was a cold ride, but we cuddled together under the blankets and it was quite romantic. It was the perfect way to end our time up at Beaver Creek Resort.
We had initially only signed Abby up for one day of ski lessons but after such a great day in lessons we decided to give her one more day. She moved up to Level 5 and would be using poles so I ended up getting new poles and passed my old ones down to Emma who passed hers down to Abby. Abby was so excited when she found out that Garret would be her instructor again. She even found one of the girls she met the day before and immediately bonded with her. Madeline was a little more timid about riding in the elevator without me, but like a brave little girl, she went with the nice ladies without crying.
The rest of us spent the morning riding the green runs up on the main part of the mountain like the day before. The reality is the blue runs were closer to the bottom and somewhat icy so we stayed as close to the top of the mountain as we could. After getting bored of the green runs, Emma, Peter, Andrew and I headed back over to the double black so that we could get to the Grouse Mountain Express Lift. Mike was a good sport and skied down some of the other runs while we tried the harder stuff. I didn’t like the double black as well as I liked it the previous day. But the kids thought it was pretty awesome. We took Emma on Screech Owl and she loved it. I got lots of photos of the kids going down the moguls and off the jumps before leaving them to head to the Spa at the Park Hyatt to sit in the hot tub with Mike. Since Mike booked us massages for the evening time, we had access to the spa all day. It was so nice to sit and relax before heading back to the resort to each lunch with the kids. Just like the previous day, we ate, relaxed, watched TV, and then Mike and I headed back to get the girls from their ski lessons. We made dinner for everyone and then Mike and I went to get our massages. That was the way to do it. It’s fantastic to have built in babysitters to watch Madeline.
We took our time in the morning getting everything ready and packing the car for our ski trip to Beaver Creek. We arrived around lunchtime and headed first to the grocery store for some lunch from the deli. We ate in the car and then headed to the Charter at Beaver Creek which is where we would be staying. Since our room was not quite ready, we parked in front of the resort and then got on our ski gear and piled into the resort shuttle and headed over to the main ski area. Mike took Madeline first while I went up the mountain with the older kids. We skied up near the Red Buffalo Express Lift and did a few of the easy runs up there before Abby and I headed down to switch with Mike. The kids met Mike up at the Cookie Cabin and they skied until the end of the day. Madeline was pretty much done skiing when I got her and so we just waited at the bottom for the 3pm free warm cookies that Beaver Creek Ski Resort is known for. Madeline, Abby and I were in heaven. We decided to head over to the Charter via the shuttle to check into our room. We were pleasantly surprised by how nice the Charter was. We got settled and then Mike and Andrew headed to get groceries for the next few days.
On our first full day at Beaver Creek I got Abby and Madeline ready and headed on over to the ski base to get them checked into their ski lessons for the day. Mike bought Abby a one-day lesson and Madeline a 3-day lesson the previous day. After speaking with the instructors, we ended up putting Abby in Level 4. We wanted her to focus on more parallel turns. For this level, she didn’t need poles. Madeline went into the beginner level with the other 3-5-year olds. I was a little worried about how she would be when I had to say goodbye to her at the elevator. A sweet lady helped me label her skis and then she held Madeline’s hand and took her down to the kid center on the lower level of the resort. Madeline spent most of the day on the magic carpet with plenty of fun breaks like story time, snack time, and play time. Abby had a great time in her lesson and picked up a few new skis on parallel turns. She was excited that they made her one of the kid leaders and she had nothing but great things to say about her instructor Garret.
While Abby and Emma were in lessons, the rest of us took the Centennial Express Lift to the Cinch Express Lift and to the Cookie Cabin Summit. We spent most of the morning skiing down the easy green groomers as that was where there was the most powder…so we thought. We skied down the Red Buffalo and Booth Gardens runs the most. After a few hours of exploring this area, Andrew, Peter and I headed over to the Grouse Mountain Express Lift via the double black Golden Eagle run. It was way easier since it was mostly powder. The steep moguls would have been nearly impossible without all the powder. Once on Grouse Mountain we skied down the single black Screech Owl twice. It was definitely more fun to navigate those moguls. The boys had fun speeding down the moguls and going off some jumps. From there we headed all the way back to the Charter via the Creekside Skiway. It was so much fun to ski all the way to where we were staying. We met Mike and Emma back at the room for a late lunch. By the time we ate and relaxed, no one really wanted to go back out. Mike and I headed back out to ski for just a little longer before picking up Madeline at 2:15pm from her ski school. We hopped on the shuttle and headed back to our resort to drop her off before heading back to pick up Abby at 3:00pm and grab our free warm chocolate chip cookie. We spent the rest of the day just chilling at the resort, watching movies, and eating.
For Mike's birthday this year I booked a weekend away to Beaver Creek at the Park Hyatt for some relaxation and outdoor adventure. Since the weather was a bit colder than we had anticipated, we left our mountain bikes at home and planned on doing some hiking instead. We left on Thursday evening and got to the resort a little after 9pm. The hotel was exactly like I had remembered it a year ago with some slight updates to the lobby. We headed up to our room, which we got upgraded to a suite, and turned on a movie and ordered room service while Mike finished up some work from the day. It was nice to just sit and watch TV together before drifting off to sleep.
The next day it was so incredibly cold and snowing and so we decided to sleep in. We ate a very yummy breakfast in the hotel restaurant before walking over to the Allegria Spa to check out their services. We booked a massage for the following day and then grabbed our coats from our room so we could head to the village to do some shopping. We went into the various shops and didn't buy much except for a cute pair of ski socks for Madeline. We stopped at Rimini's for a warm ham and cheese sandwich and a Nutella and banana crepe. It all tasted so good. After a few more shops, and talking with some pretty great locals, we headed back in the hotel to grab our suits so we could spend some time in the outside jacuzzi. We love sitting outside in the jacuzzi when its cold and snowy outside. There is just something so magical about it all. The rest of the day was spent napping and relaxing before heading to dinner at Hooked which is a seafood restaurant. We ate the most delicious Japanese rolls. They were like no other rolls we had ever eaten. Then we headed out to find some yummy dessert. We decided to drive down to Vail to grab some dessert at a local Ale House. It wasn't quite up to par but that was ok because the fries we had were delicious. Then we headed back to the hotel and grabbed our free s'mores kit and headed up to the room to eat the chocolate and go to bed. It was much too cold to actually go outside to the fire pit and roast s'mores.
The next morning, we woke up to cold temperatures but sunny skies. We ate another fabulous breakfast and then headed out on our hike up to Bear Lake. We took the Bear Lake trail which followed the creek. It was awesome to be able to hear the creek alongside the trail almost all the way up to the lake. Most of the trail was snow covered with the snow that had fallen the day before. It was actually really great to hike in the snow. The hike up to the lake was relatively easy and we enjoyed being together. It was super peaceful up at the lake and we enjoyed playing with two little birds who enjoyed our crumbs. We decided to head back a different way and took the Overlook trail which had us venture across the various slopes. It was pretty spectacular hiking through dense forests before popping out on the open slopes only to cross and then hike once again through another set of trees. This went on for quite some time and eventually we lost count of how many sections we went through. As we looked at our watches it became clear that we needed to pick up the pace if we were going to make it back in time for our 3:00pm massages. At one point we actually started running on the trail when we could. With only 15 min before 3:00pm, we were getting desperate to find a short cut back. So, like idiots, we decided to get off the wooded trail, and just walk/run/slide down the last sloped mountain straight back to the hotel. It was kind of crazy going straight down the mountain. Mike used his hiking poles and glissaded down some of the snowier sections. We just laughed and laughed all the way down. We made it back to our room with only a few minutes to spare. We spent the rest of the afternoon getting pampered and then relaxing in the 5-Step Aqua Sanitas Water Sanctuary. It was the perfect way to unwind after our 8-mile hike. After showering and getting ready for the evening, we headed down to the bar in the lobby area and ordered the most amazing appetizer while we killed time waiting for our dinner reservation at Mirabelle's. We ordered the Cheese and Charcuterie Platter and it was DELICIOUS!!! Then it was off to Mirabelle's to eat some tasty French cuisine. It was the perfect way to end a pretty perfect day and a pretty fantastic getaway to Beaver Creek! Of course, it snowed throughout the night and when we woke up to go home it was all snow covered. That was pretty magical!