Your only limit is your imagination…the options of things to do in Steamboat Springs in the summer is endless! Whether you prefer scenic hikes, tubing down the river, mountain biking, spa treatments, Steamboat will always have something for everyone.
Alpine Slide – Ride a chairlift to the top of historic Howelsen Hill and enjoy The Howler, a 2,400-foot long alpine slide near downtown Steamboat that is lots of fun for the whole family.
ATV Tours – One of the most exciting and scenic ways to enjoy the great outdoors is to take an ATV tour at Steamboat Lake Outfitters. Explore Routt National Forest on the mining roads on and around Hahn’s Peak, and ascend to an outstanding Steamboat Lake overlook.
Boat Rentals – If you would like to get out on the open water, you have two very scenic options. About 15 miles south of Steamboat there is a marina at Stagecoach Reservoir, and 30 miles north of town is the Steamboat Lake Marina. Both marinas offer hourly or daily rentals for pontoon boats, canoes, kayaks, and paddle-boats. In addition, the reservoir and the lake are both surrounded by plenty of great hiking and mountain biking paths that you can enjoy on a beautiful summer day.
Botanical Gardens – A beautiful place to take a break from your recreational adventures in Steamboat is the Yampa River Botanic Park, which is free to the public. Its beautifully sculpted gardens, benches, walkways, and grassy knolls are perfect for taking a walk, picnicking, bird watching, or just relaxing. The gardens attract a wide variety of native butterflies and birds. Throughout the summer, free hour-long Music on the Green concerts are offered in the center of the gardens, along with other family-friendly entertainment.
Fly Fishing – Steamboat has an abundance of lakes and streams that are ideal for fly fishing. If you would like the services of a guide we recommend Bucking Rainbow Outfitters, who will arrange an unforgettable half-day or full-day fly fishing trip for your group that you will never forget. You can choose to fish at either a public-water location or pay additional access fees to visit the private waters of a local ranch.
Frisbee Golf – Steamboat Ski Resort offers a 9-hole Frisbee golf course at the base of Mt. Werner. It is open to the public from dawn to dusk all summer long.
Golf – Steamboat has 3 great public golf courses. Haymaker Golf Course is a spectacular links-style course that was recently selected as one of the top 20 in the state. Then there is the Sheraton Steamboat Golf Club, which is dramatically contoured and was designed by Robert Trent Jones II. And finally, the Steamboat Golf Club is a 9-hole course that is quite affordable and very nicely groomed. All three courses are highly recommended.
Gondola Rides – If you would like to enjoy majestic views from the top of Mt. Werner without the hassle of hiking all the way to the top, Steamboat’s 8-passenger gondola will transport you to the peak in 10 minutes flat! From the top, you can hike or bike either a short loop or a more ambitious trek in order to traverse the many faces of Storm Peak and Mt. Werner. The mountain features a spectacular array of wildflowers in the summertime as well as outstanding views in every direction of the Flat Tops, Sleeping Giant, and the Zirkels.
Helicopter Rides – For a once-in-a-lifetime aerial tour of the Yampa Valley, Zephyr Helicopter Company offers customized helicopter tours to the general public. The views are breathtaking!
Hiking – The area surrounding Steamboat is absolutely packed with fantastic hiking adventures. Right out our back door are Mt. Werner and Storm Peak, which are covered with trails. Adjacent to town is the ever-popular Fish Creek Falls hike, which also accesses a longer scenic hike to Long Lake. Further outside town is the Mad Creek trailhead, which serves as a portal into the endlessly explorable Mt. Zirkel Wilderness.
Horseback Riding – There are more horseback riding options in the Steamboat area than for perhaps any other summer activity. We recommend Del’s Triangle 3 Ranch, Elk River Guest Ranch and Saddleback Ranch, each located 15 to 25 miles outside Steamboat in pristine ranch country, surrounded by wilderness. If you would like a more convenient if slightly less scenic horseback riding option, Sombrero Ranch is located 3 miles outside of Steamboat.
Hot Air Ballooning – If you ever dreamed of floating quietly above Steamboat in the comfort of a hot air balloon, Wild West Balloon Adventures offers early-morning flights over the Yampa Valley, complete with a complimentary breakfast and a glass of champagne!
Hot Springs – Just 7 miles outside of Steamboat is one of the most popular and attractive hot springs facilities in Colorado. Strawberry Park Hot Springs is truly a can’t-miss Steamboat experience that is open year-round. It features hot spring pools of varying sizes and temperatures, with the warmest hovering around 105 degrees. The sculpted masonry surrounding each pool is fabulously designed. Strawberry Park is also perfect for hiking, picnicking, and achieving complete serenity. NOTE: Clothing is optional after dark.
Just For Kids – There is a good reason why Steamboat is consistently ranked as one of the most family-friendly resort towns. Yampatika offers a wonderful summer program of 2-hour nature activities and week-long nature-themed camps for children 3-11. Steamboat offers the Kids’ Adventure Club weekdays from mid-June to mid-August, giving your kids a wide array of activities to enjoy while you pursue your own Steamboat adventures. At the base of the mountain is the Gondola Square Adventure Zone, featuring the Slingshot Bungee Trampoline, the Shoot ‘n Shower, the Human Gyro, a climbing wall, and a small miniature golf course. Another great kid-friendly activity is Strings in the Mountains’ series of weekly youth concerts, featuring all sorts of fun music-oriented performances.
Kayaking – Both the Yampa River and the Elk River provide excellent water for kayakers of all levels. If you’re a beginner or would like to brush up on your kayaking skills, the Mountain Sports Kayak School offers 3-hour group lessons every day of the summer.
Massage & Spa Services – If you would like to be taken care of while you’re on vacation, there are many great options for massages, acupuncture, body wraps and all sorts of other spa treatments. Some of our favorite spas are Waterside Day Spa, Life Essentials, and Bear River Spa.
Mountain Biking – Steamboat is a fantastic place to ride a bike in the summertime! Whether you prefer mountain biking on Mt. Werner’s challenging and extensive trail system or taking a relaxing bike ride on the Yampa River Core Trail, there’s something for everyone. If you need to rent a bike, we recommend either Ski Haus, which has a more extensive inventory, or Steamboat Ski & Bike Kare, which is a bit more affordable.
Pottery Studio – For a relaxing activity that parents and children might enjoy together, The Potter’s Wheel is a do-it-yourself pottery studio where you are the artist. This is a great change of pace if you’ve begun to burn yourself out on all of Steamboat’s outdoor excitement!
Rock Climbing – For summer excitement, it doesn’t get much better than rock climbing in the wilderness around Steamboat. You can arrange an expedition through Rocky Mountain Ventures for you and your family or for a large group. They will customize your trip for all skill levels and ages, including children as young as 6. Rise above your fear of heights!
Rodeo – Steamboat’s very own Pro Rodeo Series is the most successful weekly rodeo in the USA. The series has been the heart and soul of the Steamboat summer calendar since the 70s and has now been expanded to include a rodeo event at Romick Arena every Friday and Saturday evening from mid-June to mid-August. The best family-friendly event in town!
Sporting Clays – One of the most unique diversions available in Steamboat is the sporting clays shooting range just west of town at Three Quarter Circles. The range includes twelve shooting stations that can be modified to accommodate beginners or seasoned sportsmen looking to hone their craft. Sporting clays is great for individual or team play, for camaraderie or competition. 3QC’s property also includes a driving range for golfers.
Strings in the Mountains – Steamboat’s cultural landscape has been greatly enhanced for the past 19 years by the extensive and electric musical schedule arranged by Strings in the Mountains. Over the course of the summer, Strings will host over 30 concerts.
Swimming – You can take a dip in either scenic Steamboat Lake, the lazy Yampa River, or you can head to Old Town Hot Springs, which is the primary rec center in Steamboat. It features an Olympic-sized pool, several jacuzzi’s, and a kiddie pool with fun animal toys.
Tennis – There are three tennis facilities in Steamboat. The most notable is The Tennis Center, one of the finest indoor/outdoor tennis facilities in the country. It is open year-round and offers high-quality court rentals as well as tennis lessons. Steamboat’s main rec center, Old Town Hot Springs, rents out its courts for a more affordable hourly rate. And there are a few free tennis courts next to Howelsen Hill that are first-come, first-served.
Tubing – Floating through town on the Yampa River is easily one of the most iconic and truly relaxing of all the summer activities in Steamboat. Tubing is an excellent way to cool off as you float down the lazy rapids and catch some warm rays of sunshine. You can either procure your own inner tubes and explore the river on your own terms, or you can rent tubes from Backdoor Sports, in downtown Steamboat, float a few miles of the river, and have Back-door’s shuttle pick you up and bring you back to your starting point.
Wagon Ride Dinners – If you would like to go back in time and experience a taste of what it was like to ride in a horse-drawn wagon, you can visit Saddleback Ranch or Elk River Guest Ranch and enjoy a family-friendly wagon ride complete with a hearty home-cooked dinner. And as an added bonus, at Saddleback you will also enjoy kick up your heels with some western musical entertainment and even get a chance to learn the art of calf-roping!
Whitewater Rafting – Among the greatest recreational assets Steamboat boasts are the wonderful rivers in its vicinity. Because of this, there are wide-ranging rafting opportunities available, from the easygoing stretches of the Yampa River close by to the intermediate rapids of Elk River and Arkansas River to the whitewater gauntlet of the harrowing Cross Mountain Canyon. Blue Sky West offers many rafting trips of varying duration and difficulty in these and other locations. This will likely end up as one of your most unforgettable Steamboat memories!