Plan a Long Winter Weekend Snowmobiling & More in Vail, Colorado

Vail offers some of the best skiing in the world, but non-skiers have much to enjoy in this charming mountain village as well. Whether you partake in the sport or not, your visit to Vail is not complete without experiencing all this unique location has to offer in the wintertime.

person a snowmobile

We here at Sage Outdoor Adventures boast some of the best snowmobiling in Vail, Colorado, and we do cater to beginners. Learn more about that and other activities in Vail, Colorado below, with this long winter weekend itinerary chock full of seasonal adventures and local hotspots.

Note, Vail is a pretty walkable, pedestrian-friendly city, and some of the below activities are within walking distance of each other. If you are visiting without a car, you can check out the year-round bus service from the Town of Vail Transit Department. Also, please double check hours of operations with individual establishments, as these can change at any time.

Thursday: Dinner, Drinks & a Museum

Ease into your mini vacation with dinner and drinks after you settle into your hotel, and maybe a museum visit. Vail is known for its diverse range of restaurants, with everything from fine dining establishments to hole-in-the-wall dive bars, and anything in between.

For dinner, we recommend Pepi’s Bar & Restaurant, known for its Austrian fare, wild game, and a year-round deck and live entertainment. The George, within walking distance of Pepi’s, is also a popular option. They offer everything from pub grub to filet mignon and surf and turf. Pepi’s is open until 9pm, The George 2am.

Looking to just grab a beer? Check out the Vail Brewing Company, open until 10pm, or the Remedy Bar, which is located inside the Four Seasons and is open until 10:30pm. All four of these restaurants/bars are within about 15-minute walk of each other, if you want grab a beer and then head elsewhere for dinner.

If you have time, the Colorado Snowsports Museum and Hall of Fame is open until 6pm and is also within walking distance of the aforementioned eateries. Here you can learn about the history of the Vail Valley, as well as snowsports in general. The fee is just a $5 donation.

view of vail village from mountain

Friday: Explore the Village & Fit in Ice Skating or Snowshoeing

You can’t stay in Vail, Colorado without a walk through this nationally known mountain village. When it comes to shopping and finding souvenirs to bring home, you’ll discover shops for everything from jewelry to toys to winterwear. Here are just a few store suggestions:

Eye Pieces of Vail: This store opens at 9am and offers an incredible selection of sunglasses, goggles, and any other eyewear you can think of.

The Squash Blossom: One of Vail’s oldest retailers, this shop offers a wide array of Native American jewelry. They open at 10am on Fridays.

Perch Vail: For stylish, contemporary women’s wear, stop into Perch Vail, open at 10am.

Perch Vail and Eye Pieces of Vail are both along East Meadow Drive, with just a few establishments in between them, and then Squash Blossom is about a 5-minute walk away across Gore Creek.

After a leisurely morning of shopping, stop for lunch at Big Bear Bistro, a three-minute walk from Squash Blossom, where you can choose from a variety of delicious sandwiches and soups; they also serve breakfast all day.

Ice skating or snowshoeing comes next! The Vail Square Ice Rink opens at 2pm and is about a 15-minute bus ride from Big Bear Bistro. If snowshoeing is more your jam, and you are in town with a vehicle, snowshoe tours are offered daily at the Walking Mountains Science Center starting at 2pm. This snowshoeing experience is located just outside Vail in nearby Avon, about 15 minutes away by car. A bus is available, but it will be about a 40-minute ride.

For Friday night dinner, check out La Bottega for upscale Italian cuisine, open until 9pm, or La Nonna Ristorante, open until 11pm. There is also Minturn Saloon, one of Vail’s most historic restaurants that dates back to 1901. They’ve been temporarily closed for renovations, but plan to reopen starting in summer 2023 – keep them in mind for the 2023/2024 winter season in Vail!

Saturday: Snowmobile With Sage & Take a Gondola to Dinner

We may be biased, but we like to think of snowmobiling as the crown jewel when it comes to winter activities in Vail, Colorado! The expert guides at Sage provide top notch Vail snowmobile tours on 6,000 rideable acres in backcountry Colorado – that’s larger than the entire Vail ski area.

Our snowmobile tour options are divided into Adventure Tours and Performance Tours. Adventure Tours are two-hour excursions that allow passengers on the snowmobiles, so it’s a great option for families. The Performance Tour is a step up from the Adventure Tour: it covers more terrain, is limited to drivers 16 and up, and is conducive to single riders only.

If you do not have your own transportation, Sage is able to pick you up at your accommodations on a limited basis in Vail, Beaver Creek, or Avon.

The extraordinary views from our private mountain remain the number one draw for those looking to snowmobile in Vail. Following close behind the stunning sights you’ll see is our superior customer service. Our guides are knowledgeable, friendly, and will lead you into an amazing adventure with our Vail snowmobile tours.

Treat yourself to a decadent dinner Saturday evening at Bistro Fourteen, an ideal place to refuel after a day snowmobiling. Speaking of great views, you’ll enjoy sights of the 14,000-foot Mount of the Holy Cross at this unique eatery. This is an exclusive, ski-in, ski-out restaurant, but the Eagle Bahn Gondola is free to non-skiers from 3:30pm until 5pm. If you can, take the gondola up before the sun goes down, so you can enjoy a beautiful sunset from the restaurant.

Sunday: Relax at a Renowned Spa (Or Take Your Ski Day)

If you’re a skier and you haven’t yet enjoyed Vail skiing, today might be the day to do so. Otherwise, we suggest relaxing after all your adventures with a Vail spa day. The extremely highly rated RockResorts Spa at the Lodge at Vail is open from 10am to 5pm daily. Check out their hot tub and sauna, and prepare for an incredible massage, facial, or one of their other body therapies.

arrow sign say that says vail on it, snow in background

When it comes to the best snowmobiling in Vail, Colorado turn to us here at Sage Outdoor Adventures. And, make sure to enjoy all the rest of the wintertime fun this region of Colorado has to offer!

Learn more about Sage snowmobiling in Vail >>

The Best Snowmobile Experience in the Vail Valley

snow covered valley

It’s a bold statement. But we will gladly make it. We truly believe that we offer the very best snowmobile experience in the Vail Valley, period. Vail snowmobiling simply does not get better than with us here at Sage.

Make no bones about it; this high country snowmobile tour is not like any other.  What’s the difference-maker? It’s that we operate on a beautiful and historic private mountain, an area larger than Vail Ski area.

Family Snowmobile Tour

Why is Snowmobiling on a Private Mountain in Vail Special?

But boasting about ‘a private mountain’ may not mean anything at first glance. So what does that mean in reality for the Vail, Colorado snowmobiling experience we offer?

Permanent and Comfortable Structures

First, most snowmobile operations are based on Forest Service land, where they aren’t permitted to build permanent structures. That means you’ve got a port-o-potty on the side of a logging road.

Here at Sage, we are blessed with a comfortable base. Our guests arrive to a cozy lodge and our base of operations. You’ll be able to prepare for your snowmobile adventure in comfort. And yes, we have real restrooms!

Customized Snowmobiling Trails

But the benefits of a private mountain experience for Colorado snowmobile tours don’t end there. We’ve got a lineup of serious grooming equipment and more than 100 miles of professionally groomed trails! Operations on Forest Service land are forced into existing designated trails and don’t have the ability to customize rides for snowmobile tours.

group of snowmobiles together

Our many varied trails were designed and are maintained for snowmobiling. They aren’t just old logging roads. You’ll experience open sage flats, giant stands of aspen, winding turns through spruce forests, and jaw-dropping views from the edge of the Eagle River canyon, tumbling more than 2,400 feet below you.

We also groom and maintain 10 sprawling meadows, specifically for playing on snowmobiles! With 6,000 acres to explore and backcountry views of six different mountain ranges, it doesn’t take long to realize why this really is the very best snowmobile experience in the Vail valley.

For options and pricing, please check out our Snowmobiling Page. You can also call us at 970-476-3700 or contact us online.

Snowmobiling in Vail Colorado

Don’t Just Ride a Snowmobile – Learn How to Drive One

somewhat aerial view of someone snowmobiling

We don’t offer a “follow the guide and keep up” kind of snowmobile tour. The experience at Sage Outdoor Adventures is something completely different. On a tour with us, you won’t just ride a snowmobile – you will truly learn how to drive one.

Our Snowmobile Guides

Our snowmobile guides are the best in the business for our Colorado snowmobile tours: they are friendly, outgoing, and excellent teachers. Dedicated to having the most possible fun on any snowmobile ride means you’ll learn some new skills along the way, no matter how experienced you are at driving a snowmobile.

Learn how to drive a snowmobile at Sage

Each of our guided snowmobile tours is done with a very small guest-to-guide ratio. Because of that, we are able to customize every tour: no two rides are ever the same. Our guides will always make the effort to meet the needs of each group and make sure you feel comfortable on your machine.

The Perfect Setting to Learn

In addition to having a team of outstanding snowmobile guides, our base area is the perfect place to begin. Just 50 yards from the starting point, you’ll enter a giant “practice meadow” where you can learn the feel of driving your snowmobile in a pressure-free setting.

Our guests have the opportunity to cruise around the meadow and practice turns. Then you’ll be off to explore this giant winter wonderland!

With freshly groomed trails, practice meadows, and so much beautiful terrain to freely explore, you’ll learn how to snowmobile in the best possible setting. Our hope is that each of our guests will appreciate the joy and freedom of snowmobiling.

For more information on guided snowmobile tours with Sage, please take a few minutes to check out our snowmobiling page. We can’t wait to help you plan a memorable snowmobiling adventure.

Snowmobiles and the Real Backcountry Experience

snow covered valley

The recent changes in snowmobile technology are even more radical than the change in ski shape over the last 15 years. Emissions are incredibly low and the sport of snowmobiling is exploding. But what does that mean from an environmental perspective? How does snowmobiling compare to other winter sports in terms of its impact?

Who is Snowmobiling nowadays?

From young families to serious outdoor enthusiasts, snowmobiling is a fast-growing sport. Many skiers enjoy a quiet day away from the busy slopes and a chance to do something different with their families. Here at Sage, it’s not uncommon for us to see three generations of riders together on a tour.

The number-one reason our customers say they go snowmobiling is to “experience the wilderness.” To us, this isn’t surprising at all. It’s true, that backcountry experience is the primary draw for most snowmobile riders.

Snowmobile Tour

Common Misconceptions about Snowmobiling

Unfortunately, there’s also a great deal of misperception about snowmobiling. Some folks see them as noisy and polluting. In reality, neither is true. Our modern snowmobiles are incredibly quiet. You are more likely to hear the crunch of the tracks on the snow than you are the engine. And with low emissions and no smell, snowmobiles offer a perfect escape from the bustle of the ski slopes into the tranquility of the mountains.

Snowmobiling through Undisturbed Nature

Our 6,000-acre private mountain near Vail and Beaver Creek is home to resident mule deer, elk, and other wildlife. Our riders frequently see wildlife here on the mountain, where they stay undisturbed through the winter. In terms of environmental impact, a snowmobile ride is far more “green” than a day of riding ski lifts. All of our guided trips give our guests the opportunity to stop, look, listen and just enjoy being still in these stunning places.

Snowmobiling environment

In the end, our guests’ favorite part of these trips is also our favorite part. We’re here because we love the experience. We are skiers too. But a snowmobile ride offers the chance to escape from the crowds and experience the still silence of the backcountry and the mountains in winter.

For more information on our guided snowmobile tours, please take a look at our Snowmobiling Page. Or give us a call at 970-476-3700. We hope to see you here for a snowmobiling adventure soon!