Summit Sometimes: Ted and Gail Gravenhorst
summit daily news
Ted and Gail Gravenhorst’s love affair with Colorado began in the late 1980s when they began escaping their Florida home for a Vail ski vacation.
“We became enamored with Colorado, the mountains and skiing,” said Ted, who had never attempted skiing before the couple’s first ski week in Vail, when he was 50.
It quickly turned into a yearly ritual to fly west twice a year to get in a couple weeks of snow.
Though the Gravenhorst’s never stayed in Summit County, they definitely knew something good was laying beyond Interstate 70.
“As you drive from Denver to Vail, you can’t help but notice all the turnoffs,” Ted said.
In 1992, they decided it was time to begin looking for a second home, so they could spend more time in the mountains.
Instead of Vail, their search took them to Keystone, a ski area they had recently discovered while driving over Swan Mountain Road from Breckenridge.
“We thought (Keystone) was a great family place,” Gail said.
So, they made an offer on a single-family home, but didn’t end up getting it.
The following year, they came back out to Summit County and enlisted the help of a real estate agent who found them their current duplex in Summerwood.
In 2002, after retirement, they began spending the entire summer in Summit County, to cash in on the laid-back attitude and the change of scenery.
The Gravenhorst’s search for a second home took them to Copper Mountain, Silverthorne and Breckenridge, but Summerwood had something none of the other locations could provide.
“We had an attraction to the lake,” Ted said.
“We enjoy the Silverthorne Rec Center … We go to all the little festival functions. There’s stuff going on every weekend,” Gail said. (Ted admits he ate himself silly at the recent Frisco Barbecue Challenge).
“We first thought this was a ski place, but now we think it’s a summer place as well,” said Gail.
They still visit in the wintertime to ski, although betting on the weather is more of a risk.
“If you’re here at the wrong time in winter, it can be harsh,” Ted said.
They now say July and August are their favorite months.
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