Where to Stay, Eat, and Play in America’s Best Mountain Towns
Posted By MJ On April 5, 2012 @ 1:51 pm In Travel
With its downtown setting and Old West flavor, the Hotel Bristol is like walking into a Zane Grey novel.
The owners of the Sweetwater Grill used lottery winnings to create their dream restaurant on the banks of the Yampa River. Fresh local fare with ethnic flourishes.
When a world-class river flows through town, you’ve got to toss it a fly. A half-day float trip will set you back $325.
For details on MJ-endorsed hotels, restaurants, and outfitters in Truckee, California, click here.
Cedar House Sport Hotel
The new Cedar House Sport Hotel—sleek, minimalist, and meticulously eco—exemplifies the best of new Truckee.
Cottonwood, up on a hill above downtown, is the place to quaff a happy hour brew and take in the view from an outdoor deck, catch live acoustic music, and tie into some grass-fed beef or Asian-tinged seafood.
Sports Exchange, right on the Truckee River, rents the requisites for a full-fledged Truckee visit: Kayaks, tubes, and fly-fishing gear (from its own in-house fly shop), and experts in all of the above are on staff.
For details on MJ-endorsed hotels, restaurants, and outfitters in Red Lodge, Montana, click here.
The 1893 Pollard Hotel is in the heart of downtown within walking distance of everything in Red Lodge.
Bridge Creek Backcountry Kitchen
The Bridge Creek Backcountry Kitchen serves “mountain cuisine” that puts local beef and elk to highly creative use.
Beartooth Bike Tours
The best way to see America’s Most Beautiful Highway is from the seat of a cruiser, riding downhill.
For details on MJ-endorsed hotels, restaurants, and outfitters in Ketchum, Idaho, click here.
Sun Valley Lodge
Sun Valley Lodge, built in 1936 in an inspiring setting surrounded by the Sawtooth Mountains, is the archetypal American ski hostelry — and the place where Hemingway finished For Whom the Bell Tolls (Suite 206).
Chowing down on Idaho lamb, baby back ribs, or a flatiron steak on the Roosevelt Grille’s rooftop deck is a quintessential Ketchum experience.
Silver Creek Outfitters
Sun Valley is surrounded by trout streams, including the Big Wood, the Salmon, and legendary Silver Creek. Silver Creek Outfitters guides them all.
For details on MJ-endorsed hotels, restaurants, and outfitters in Warren and Waitsfield, Vermont, click here.
The Pitcher Inn
Located on Main St. in Warren, the Inn has 11 rooms and suites, each decorated with a Vermont theme, including “school,” “trout,” and “Calvin Coolidge.”
American Flatbread epitomizes the Mad River Valley’s infatuation with fresh local food. Located on a working farm and open only on weekends, it serves pizzas baked in a wood-fired oven that are worth the inevitable wait.
Take a glider-plane lesson or just go up to catch the view — a superb soaring wave gets you high fast.
For details on MJ-endorsed hotels, restaurants, and outfitters in Talkeetna, Alaska, click here.
The Roadhouse, in the heart of town, has rooms from $50 (and sourdough hotcakes at breakfast bigger than the plate they’re served on). Or for a supremely Alaska experience, ask for Trapper John’s Cabin, off by itself near the old village airport.
Foraker Dining Room
The Foraker Dining Room in Talkeetna Alaskan Lodge serves Alaska fish and game, and you can’t beat the view of McKinley and the Alaska Range.
Alaska Bush Floatplane Service
A flightseeing gander at Mount McKinley ($210) is mind-blowing, but so is a drop-off trip into the backcountry for hiking or fishing.
For details on MJ-endorsed hotels, restaurants, and outfitters in Crested Butte, Colorado, click here.
The Ruby of Crested Butte
The Ruby of Crested Butte B&B provides free, bright red townie bikes (and an après-ride hot tub), plus the owners are outdoors people who know the area trails.
The Wooden Nickel
Make that the “World Famous” Wooden Nickel — Crested Butte’s oldest meatery (its bar came in by train and horse-drawn wagon circa 1895) has a cool vibe and serves up hearty slabs of beef and elk.
Crested Butte Sports
Besides renting full-suspension and hardtail Cannondales, Crested Butte Sports serves up informed beta on the nearly endless list of hot local mountain bike rides.
For details on MJ-endorsed hotels, restaurants, and outfitters in Park City, Utah, click here.
Summer rates will make you feel like you’re stealing a room at posh, legendary Stein Eriksen Lodge.
Slopes by Talisker
The new Slopes by Talisker, at the Waldorf Astoria at Canyons Resort, has a French chef who emphasizes locally sourced ingredients in a swarthy, antler-bedecked setting.
Park City Yoga Adventures
Whether it’s paddleboard yoga in a hot spring within a cave, hiking and yoga out on the trail, or yoga in a backcountry yurt, this isn’t your everyday yoga studio.
For details on MJ-endorsed hotels, restaurants, and outfitters in Bryson City, North Carolina, click here.
Watershed Cabins places you in a designer log/stone cabin in the woods, complete with an oversized porch and views of the Great Smoky Mountains.
The Freymont Inn is all open-beamed woodsy and serves up Southern chow like lamb shanks, local mountain trout, and country ham.
Nantahala Outdoor Center
NOC is the crossroads of the Smokies for river sports, including raft trips and whitewater kayak lessons—plus it rents mountain bikes and sells a full spate of outdoor gear.
For details on MJ-endorsed hotels, restaurants, and outfitters in Taos, New Mexico click here.
The downtown landmark bills itself as “the living room of Taos.”
After the rattlesnake appetizer, try any dish with northern New Mexico’s greatest contribution to the culinary arts—green chile.
Los Rios River Runners
The Rio Grande’s superb, Class 3–4 stretch through Taos Box is at its best in May and June.
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