Town of Dillon adds new recreation tracks for hiking, snowshoeing and cross-country skiing on Dillon Marina
Recreators will have to bring their own gear but can take advantage of a host of free activities — including an ice rink expected to open by the end of this month
Residents and visitors looking for Summit County winter recreation have more options for fun on the Dillon Marina this year with a new loop trail offering two tracks specifically for hiking and snowshoeing as well as cross-country skiing.
The tracks run parallel to the original loop that encompasses the marina — a 2-mile route running along the marina’s shoreline to the Dillon Nature Preserve, down to Roberts Tunnel and all the way across the lake to Lodgepole Street — which first opened to residents and visitors in 2020.
According to Suzanne Phillipson, marketing and communications manager for the town, officials opened the marina to recreation during the pandemic “as a way to provide another recreation opportunity to get people outside, get some fresh air, social distance.”
Having experienced a “huge success,” Phillipson said town officials continued to build on the opportunities — introducing an ice rink last year complete with hockey boards, nets and Zamboni-smoothed ice ideal for skates. Unlike the trails, the rink has yet to open, but Phillipson expects it will by the end of this month.
Phillipson said the new loop was born out of a need for more dedicated tracks for ski-based activities since the original trails have become popular for hikers and dogs. Trails opened on Jan. 9, and the marina will likely be open for recreation until mid-March, according to Phillipson, when the ice begins to thin.
Dillon officials drill into the ice to take measurements daily, Phillipson said, and ensure the marina is safe for use. Typically, an ice depth of more than 4 inches can support standing and walking while depth of more than 6 inches can support a vehicle, according to Recreation Manager Terese Berger.
The ice depth at the marina has currently been averaging between 10 and 16 inches, Berger said. But recreation is still at “your own risk,” and the town does not provide equipment for activities.
According to Berger, residents and visitors can rent and purchase equipment from a slew of nearby businesses. For rentals, Berger recommends REI and Columbine Ski & Sport for snowshoes; REI and Frisco Nordic Center for nordic skis; and Rebel Sports for fat tire bikes. For purchasing, Berger recommends Sun & Ski Sports, Christy’s Sports, REI, Pioneer Sports for snowshoes and REI, Sun & Ski Sports and Christy Sports for nordic skis.
Along with traversing the marina’s trails, Berger said the town will also be offering events on the ice. Those include two full moon events on Feb. 4 and March 4 from 5:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. which will feature local businesses serving snacks and hot beverages, lighted tracks and a live DJ.
Berger called the festivities, “really just a fun time for people to get together and kick off the start to winter recreation.”
As winter season activities kick into full gear, Phillipson said the updates to Dillon Marina present “a great opportunity to get outside and do something new on the lake.
“People just love getting out there,” she added. “They do it during their lunch break, they come out on the weekend.”
Although activities on Dillon Marina are free, the town does not supply equipment. Below are some businesses that offer rental and for-sale gear.
- REI at 306 Dillon Ridge Road, Dillon. Open Monday through Saturday, 9 a.m. to 7 p.m., and Sunday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
- Columbine Ski & Sport at 149 Tenderfoot St., Dillon. Open Monday through Sunday, 8 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.
- Sun & Ski Sports at 761-A W. Anemone Trail, Dillon. Open Monday through Thursday as well as Sunday 8 a.m. to 7 p.m., and Friday and Saturday, 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.
- Christy Sports at 817 U.S. Highway 6, Dillon. Open Monday through Sunday, 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.
- Pioneer Sports at 842 N. Summit Blvd., Suite 1, Frisco. Open Monday through Sunday, 7:30 a.m. to 8:30 p.m.
- Rent (call head for availability):
- Frisco Nordic Center at 616 Recreation Way, Frisco. Open Monday through Sunday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
- Sun & Ski Sports
- Christy Sports
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