Dillon looks toward summer programing as a busy winter season on the reservoir wraps up

A team of sled dogs pulls a musher over the frozen surface of the Dillon Reservoir on Saturday, Feb. 25, 2023. To see your photos featured in print or online, email submissions to
Steve Hockett/Courtesy photo

Cold temperatures and plentiful snow made for the perfect combination as the town of Dillon expanded winter programming on the Dillon Reservoir this year with Full Moon Parties, a larger ice rink and a dog mushing event.

But, as spring weather makes its slow approach, activities on the reservoir are beginning to wind down. Town staff say they are looking forward to an eventful summer as well as the warmer weather that comes with it.

“We did so many things,” Dillon marketing and communications manager Suzanne Phillipson said of the winter season on the reservoir.

In addition to the loop trails that first opened to residents and visitors in 2020 as a way for people to recreate while social distancing, this year the town added a parallel loop for skiing only, due to the high popularity of the original trails.

And, after introducing an ice rink last year, Dillon expanded the size of its rink and tried its hand at hosting pickup hockey and broomball — though Phillipson said those games did not have as much participation as the town had hoped.

A strong winter allowed Dillon to keep those activities running longer than usual, but with warmer weather headed this way, the town is no longer maintaining the ice rink and has closed the west loop. Depending on weather, the town may close the east loop by next week. 

For the first time this year, the town also began hosting Full Moon Parties on the reservoir. Phillipson described it as somewhat of a “choose-your-own-adventure” style event. The lake loops were lit up with LED lights and featured a DJ, refreshments and snacks.

Dillon also hosted three sporting events on the reservoir this year: The Summit Youth Hockey Tournament, the Pabst Colorado Pond Hockey Tournament and a Mountain Musher Dog Sleds race.

After its inaugural year at the Dillon Reservoir in 2022, Pabst Colorado Pond Hockey Tournament returned to the Dillon Reservoir for the second year in a row this year. Pond hockey players are pictured here playing in the tournament on Feb. 19, 2022.
Ian Zinner/Town of Dillon

Overall, according to Dillon Recreation Manager Terese Berger, the reservoir trails likely saw almost 10,000 visitors this season. And despite minimal advertising of the event by the town, between 500 and 600 spectators turned out for the dog sled races.

“We got lucky with the weather with all three events,” Berger said. “It was sunny during the day and then cold during the night, which is exactly what we want.”

With summer just around the corner, Phillipson said the town will reservations for boat rentals on April 1 at Opening day for the marina tends to be around Memorial Day weekend.

On June 10 and 11, the town plans to hold its annual “Let’s Go Boating” fundraiser for the League for Animals and People for Summit. And the Summit Historical Society historical boat tours begin June 1, she said. Dates for the historical tours will be posted on the town’s website.

The Dillon Farmers Markets will also start up in June, and the shows all summer long at the Dillon Amphitheater are already being announced. Possible kickball leagues and disc golf events are also in the works, Phillipson said.

“It’s going to be summer before we know it,” she said. 

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