Nordic Skiing and Snowshoeing

Nordic Skiing and Snowshoeing both have a rather extensive history in Steamboat. Back in the late 1800s/early 1900s, those who lived in the valley used snowshoes to get around. Whether they were walking to the mercantile or visiting the local apothecary for medicine, getting around in the deep snowfall was difficult. The snowshoes allowed travelers to stay more on top of the snow versus sinking into it. What was used as a means of travel then is merely a workout for us in modern day.

Nordic skiing (also known as cross-country skiing) has a very similar story. Cross-country skis were typically used for transportation during the winter months. In 1905, a gentleman named Karl Hovelsen emigrated to the United States and settled here in beautiful Steamboat Springs. He soon became known as Carl Howelsen and trained many locals in cross-country technique. He became known as the father of skiing in Steamboat.

Today, we have Carl to thank for nordic and skate skiing being so prominent in the Yampa Valley. In fact, it’s Carl that we have to thank for many Nordic Combined Olympians that have trained here and competed in the Winter Games. So, in true Steamboat tradition, get on out there, get that heart rate up, and take in the beauty around you.

Haymaker Nordic Center

Located about 15 minutes from downtown is Haymaker Nordic Center. This summertime golf course transitions to a winter wonderland with miles of trails perfect for novice nordic skiers. The rolling terrain and panoramic views make this the best spot to work on your technique. If the skiing isn’t your preference, then strap on some snowshoes and head out for a little hike. Afterwards, recover in the lodge with a cup of warm hot cocoa and maybe a burger if you are there between 11:30am and 2pm!

Skate, Classic Nordic ski, and snowshoe rentals are available. Stop in and speak to an expert to get fitted up! Already got your own gear? Not a problem! Day passes are just $20.

For more information, feel free to email them at [email protected]. Or you can call them at 970.879.9444.

Trail Map for Haymaker Nordic Center

Steamboat Ski Touring Center

Imagine yourself gliding or walking along groomed trails, but beautiful aspen groves floating by and sunshine beating down on you. Your heart rate is pumping. You are enjoying time with family, friends, or a significant other. Visit the Steamboat Ski Touring Center and test out their 15km of trails groomed for classic skiing, skate skiing, and snowshoeing.

Upon arrival, purchase your $20 day pass and get outfitted with top of the line gear from Fischer, Rossignol, Swix, and more. Their full service rental shop will equip you with everything you need. For snowshoers, they offer Atlas and Salomon snowshoes. After a day of fun in the sun, stop by the “Picnic Basket,” a snack bar specializing in nutritious, hearty homemade soups, breads, hot drinks, and energy goodies.

Find out up-to-date trail conditions by visiting them online at or call them at 970.879.8180.