Winter is upon us…and Furry B has been dying to try out his new Muttluks. Since we have already been skiing and ice-skating; it was time to try the fastest growing winter sport in the world – snowshoeing (and of course muttluking). We chose a hiking trail next door to Nederland, CO for our first snowshoe adventure. West Magnolia Trailhead is just off the Peak to Peak Highway and offers easy access to several trails. We strapped on our snowshoes (and muttluks) and had a quick practice walk at the trailhead, before heading up the trail. We hiked up to a lookout, where we could see Eldora Mountain Resort. Furry B, “The Abominable Snowman,” goes insane when he is in the snow. We had a hard time keeping up with him. It was an outstanding day to enjoy the outdoors… with blue skies, sunshine and snow.
A Little Snowshoe History— Even though snowshoeing is mostly now just a recreational sport, it actually began out of a need for survival over 6,000 years ago in Asia. In cold climates, snowshoes allowed people to travel and hunt in deep snow without sinking into the snow. Snowshoes are designed to cover a large surface area so that your feet will “float” on the snow. Snowshoes have definitely advanced since 6,000 years ago. The first snowshoes were made from wood and rawhide; and now they are typically made from plastic, aluminum and synthetic materials.
We worked up an appetite while snowshoeing, so we were glad that Nederland was close by so we could enjoy a late lunch. Nederland is a unique mountain town, with friendly people and a laid back lifestyle. While Furry B napped, we ate at the Wild Mountain Smokehouse and Brewery. It was busy; apparently a popular hangout for skiers since the Eldora ski area is close by. After lunch and a brew, we went in a few of the downtown shops and the local Mountain People’s Co-op….very small, but full of unique items and reasonably priced. Mostly all organic groceries, and a large selection of bulk staples and exotic spices. It is one of the only two grocery stores in town.
Our visit would not have been complete without a visit to the train car sitting in town. Curiosity got the best of us, so we had to drop in Buffalo Bill’s Coffee and Confections. It is a coffee shop inside of an early 1900’s train car. Very neat atmosphere with good coffee and even better homemade mini doughnuts! It was a great end to our Nederland visit.