Outside Magazine names The Observatory among America's Best
Unwind. Recharge. Book a Winter Hut Trip.
These backcountry lodges welcome dedicated skiers with warm bedding, home-cooked food, and sometimes even a sauna.
By: Frederick Reimers
Published: Jan 6, 2015
This swanky wood-and-stone chalet can be accessed via a 20-minute ski from Telluride’s Baldy Gate. Or get there via the unplowed road with the option of having your gear shuttled by snowmobile. The 2.5 bedroom lodge must be rented out in its entirety, but sleeps up to 16 under down comforters, and includes a sauna and a legendary hot tub—the frame on the circular window hanging above the tub is made from a ski lift bullwheel. The kitchen is dialed with Viking appliances, though if you’d rather not touch them, the owners can help arrange a cook for your stay. The observatory is tucked beneath 13,000-foot Palmyra and Silver Peaks. The only problem might be elevation sickness—the Observatory is perched at 11,000-feet, so be sure to acclimate in Telluride (8,750 feet) for a few nights before bunking here.
Mountain Magazine highlights The Observatory in the Winter 2014 issue
The Observatory at Alta Lakes, Telluride, CO
From the Winter 2014 issue.
Published: Feb 25, 2014
This alpine chalet was handbuilt by Telluride locals over three summers in the early 1970s. Two 13,000-foot San Juan peaks tower above; a high country lake sits out the front door, and Telluride Ski Resort is the closest neighbor. Six people sleep comfortably in two bedrooms and a loft.
Freeskier's 2014 Backcountry Issue covers a significant gathering of pros at The Observatory...Seth Morrison, Jacob Wester, Greg Hope and more. The issue is available in print only, but Jacob provides some highlights
By: Jacob Wester
Published: Friday, March 22, 2013
"Hey everyone, I am back to civilization after 3 days of radio silence. We just got back to the town of Telluride after spending 2 nights in the Alta Lakes Observatory just around the corner from the ski area. Built in the 70s, the Observatory is a classic ski lodge nestled in a huge backcountry bowl, with big faces, narrow colouirs and epic tree skiing all around it."
The Observatory is recognized in New Zealand as one of the world's most spectacular
The world's most spectacular ski lodges
By: Rachel Oakes-Ash
Published: July 9, 2013
You'll find The Observatory 20 kilometres from Telluride in Colorado. Many skidoo in, though you could walk in or ski tour as well. Bring your own oxygen because the backcountry cabin sits at almost 3500 metres. Built by locals in the 1970s, The Observatory has a "what goes on at The Observatory stays at The Observatory" reputation and a clear sky view under moonlight that will take your the oxygen you brought with you and that breath away. I can't tell you anymore or they will kill me.
The Financial Times highlights the ghost town of Alta and mining history of The Observatory
Colorado’s ghost towns reborn as ski retreats
By: Tom Robbins
Published: October 25, 2013
"Telluride’s little museum tells a fascinating story of its changing fortunes, but visitors who want to see the mining and hippy heritage up close don’t have to go far. At the edge of one of the pistes, I meet my guide Matt Bowling, who is waiting with a couple of skidoos. He shows me the controls and we’re off, whizzing through the snowdrifts until we come to the ghost town of Alta Lakes..."
MTN Town Magazine feature
The Observatory at Alta Lakes
A Telluride Escape
I had no idea what to expect when I was invited on a trip to The Observatory at Alta Lakes. I had heard from a close friend in the area that the Observatory had been home to some outrageous parties over the years and that the location was amazing. It was a last minute invite and I left with no expectations until we crested the trail that opened up into a beautiful snow covered coulee. A rustic log house was gleaming beneath 13,000-foot Palmyra and Silver Peaks of the San Juan Mountains. The words gorgeous, breathtaking and exciting all come to mind thinking back on the experience.
Check out the article in Telluride Magazine, winter spring 2011-2012 about the
History of The Observatory and the sale to the Bowlings. Click here
New owners, same soul at the Alta Lakes Observatory
Storied lodge is up and running for the winter
By Katie Klingsporn
Published: Tuesday, December 27, 2011 6:11 AM CST
Up near treeline in a lofty basin south of Telluride sits the Alta Lakes Observatory, a backcountry lodge surrounded by rugged peaks and steeped in Telluride lore.
“Our plan is to not forget all they’ve done,” Bowling said of the Observatory’s founders. “It’s an amazing thing that they put together. It’s about as unique a place as you can find.”
Backcountry Magazine - Dec, 2010 - 2011 Photo Annual
Backcountry's Rider in Chief Mike Horn traveled to Colorado's Alta Lakes Observatory with a progressive crew of skiers and riders to experience the famed chutes and rustic ambiance of this high-mountain chalet. Within a cirque of spiny couloirs, they found deep powder and rich history. Check out this video from Off the Grid Media, and read the full story of Alta Lakes Observatory in the December 2010 issue of Backcountry.
“Walled In – Deep Power and Tight Chutes at Colorado’s Alta Lakes Observatory”
By Mike Horn, Photos by Scott DW Smith
Call us (970) 239 - 0027 The Observatory at Alta Lakes, LLC, P.O. Box 2372, Telluride, CO 81435 Email: email@example.com
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