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10th Mountain Division Hut and Trail System. This famed network is one of Colorado's outdoor gems. This 34 huts are in the mountains near Camp Hale, where the decorated namesake World War II division trained. Skiers and snowshoers in winter (snowmobiles are not permitted to approach the huts) and hikers and mountain bikers in summer tackle sections of the more than 350 miles of trails and linking new and rustic cabins on day trips or weeklong expeditions. Apart from the joy of a self-reliant adventure among rugged mountains, travelers enjoy the camaraderie of communal living (there are very few private rooms in the huts), and evenings spent swapping stories by the glow of a wood-burning stove or the twinkle of summer stars. Vail, CO, 81657.
10th Mountain Division Hut Association. Maps and other information are available through the 10th Mountain Division Hut Association. Hut reservations should be made at least a month in advance. 1280 Ute Ave., Suite 21, Aspen, 81611. 970/925-5775. www.huts.org.
Paragon Guides. If you aren't familiar with the area's backcountry trails, hiring a guide is a good idea. In Vail, contact Paragon Guides, which can lead you along 100 different trails on foot or by bike, snowshoe, skis, and more. Vail, CO, 81657. 970/926-5299. www.paragonguides.com.
Vail Nordic Center. The cross-country skiing at the Vail Nordic Center is on a golf course. It's not the most beautiful terrain, but it's only $8 for a daily pass. 1778 Vail Valley Dr., Vail, CO, 81657. 970/476–8366. www.vailnordiccenter.com.
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