Walking Mountains adds guided snowshoe excursions for the winter | VailDaily.com

Walking Mountains adds guided snowshoe excursions for the winter

Daily staff report
Walking Mountains Science Center's guided backcountry snowshoe hikes are open to the public and will run on Thursdays starting Dec. 3 through the end of March.
John-Ryan Lockman | Special to the Daily |

Break out the snowshoes

To learn more about Walking Mountains Science Center’s guided snowshoe hikes and to register, call 970-827-9725, ext. 128, or visit http://www.walkingmountains.org/snowshoe to view the full schedule for the winter and sign up.

AVON — The snow is falling, and according to all the snow forecasters, this season should be rife with opportunity for some excellent backcountry snowshoeing. Brand new this year, guides from Walking Mountains Science Center, the same folks who logged more than 500 miles on the trails this summer, are returning for the winter to guide backcountry snowshoe hikes.

The hikes are open to the public and will take place on Thursdays from Dec. 3 through the end of March. Participants will be picked up at Walking Mountains Science Center in Avon, or a nearby location, and then transported to trailheads. While on the trails, they’ll be able to experience first-hand the serenity and silence of the snow-laden White River National Forest.

“We have seen a growing interest in our summer hiking program, so extending it into winter with snowshoe hikes just made sense,” said Peter Suneson, community outreach coordinator for Walking Mountains. “More people are starting to realize how much fun it is to spend time in the parts of our National Forest, where the only things you see are the local wildlife.”

Snowshoes and poles are provided, and the hikes are designed for all ability levels and typically last three to four hours from pick up. Guides will take groups on treks on snowshoe trails ranging from the East Lake Creek Trail in Edwards to the Iron Mountain Trail just outside of Red Cliff.

“We are thrilled to be able to offer local hikers and visiting guests extended snowshoe journeys on our beautiful public lands,” Suneson said. “Snowshoeing with one of our trained instructors is an opportunity to explore your curious nature while spending a peaceful day away from the hustle and bustle of our world-famous ski hills.”

The weekly snowshoe excursions will follow a rotating schedule of trails, depending on where conditions are best. However, guides at Walking Mountains will do their best to accommodate requests for specific trails. Instructors are trained as certified interpretive guides and wilderness first responders.

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