Taryn Allen | Clarion

Arguably one of the most significant reasons to attend school in Colorado is to fully experience winter in the mountains. As students return to DU after the long break, they are met with colder temperatures, bare trees and snow, but unlike any other place, it remains bearable and sunny, allowing students to continue to get outside on the weekends and de-stress from classes.

Skiing and snowboarding is one of the most talked-about winter activities for the people of Colorado because it is the hub of so many incredible ski resorts right in Denver’s backyard. Within a couple of hours, students can get to Keystone, Breckenridge, A-Basin, etc. Some get more into the sport than others, but it is definitely worth trying at least once whilst in Colorado.

For students without an Epic Pass or even gear, Winter Carnival is a perfect opportunity to try out skiing for a day or two without a bigger commitment. This is a DU tradition where students head to Keystone for the weekend of Feb. 10 this year to spend time with friends and experience the mountains up close. There are discounted rates on lift tickets and lessons that are usually the lowest of the whole ski season so students on a budget can get a better chance of being able to participate.

There are also many other reasons to go to Winter Carnival other than solely to ski. They also offer tubing in the evenings and ice skating around the clock for those not looking to ski or snowboard. DUPB also arranges buses to Keystone so all students have the opportunity to go even if only for a day.

Other than skiing and Winter Carnival, there are always other things to do in the mountains such as snowshoeing, cross-country skiing and ice skating. Colorado also has some hidden treasures of unique experiences such as the Ice Castles in Silverthorne and Dillon. These ice castles are exactly what they sound like, constructions of ice that allow visitors to walk and sometimes crawl through with ice surrounding them. They are open day and night with the difference being that at night, they light off the ice with different colors to highlight the features of the ice.

There are also several clubs at DU that help students to get outside on the weekends such as Alpine Club, DU Backpacking Club and DU Outdoor Photography. Whichever activity students choose to participate in, there is always something to explore in the Colorado snow.