Up Here Four Sports Equals One Good Day
By Christina Freeman
Andrew Moore summits the Devil's Causeway in the Flat Tops. Photo by Julia Hebard.
Yes, Steamboat Springs has plenty of productive, but private, fishing spots on ranches and land accessible only with a guide or because “you know somebody.”
But the truth is, the public fishing – including seven miles of Yampa River that run through the heart of town – is a truly amazing experience. The tailwaters at Stagecoach Reservoir, the Yampa River at Sarvis Creek, Christina State Wildlife Area on the Elk River, the Bear River in the Flat Tops, Chuck Lewis State Wildlife Area near Haymaker Golf Course: all of these prime fishing spots are on public land.
Waters are seasonal, and hatches can vary daily. Local guides can help everyone from beginners to avid anglers tie on the right fly and find the perfect spot on any given day. See Fishing/Guide Services on page 48.
So many trails surround Steamboat that hikers can go all summer without ever covering the same terrain twice. Spring Creek Trail, which abuts Old Town just off Amethyst Drive and East Maple, is a great spot for a short family hike along the creek to twin ponds, a pavilion and picnic areas, with options for longer hikes.
The Steamboat Ski Area offers a network of hiking trails accessible from the upper terminus of the gondola. Rabbit Ears, the Mount Zirkel Wilderness Area and the Flat Tops are great places to hike among the wildflowers or fall colors.
To maximize the experience, consider joining a tour with a naturalist from Yampatika, a local environmental education organization. www.yampatika.org
Steamboat has three public courses, each offering its own distinct characteristics.
Rollingstone Ranch Golf Club at the Sheraton Steamboat Resort is an 18-hole course designed by Robert Trent Jones II, featuring incredible views of the Yampa Valley with Fish Creek winding through seven of the holes. The 66 bunkers and large, undulating bent grass greens make this a championship-caliber course. www.rollingstoneranchgolf.com
Haymaker Golf Course is an 18-hole links-style course designed by Keith Foster that features at least four sets of tees per hole. Described as a “golfer’s course,” Haymaker challenges golfers of all ability levels, from novice to professional. www.haymakergolf.com
The Steamboat Golf Club is a nine-hole course bordering the Yampa River. The oldest club in Steamboat, it is a family-oriented, affordable course with a clubhouse and nearby driving range. www.steamboatgolfclub.com
In addition, Catamount Ranch & Club has an 18-hole course for the use of its members and their guests.
Tennis players have options ranging from courts at various lodging properties to the state-of-the-art facilities at The Tennis Center at Steamboat Springs. Located off U.S. 40 near the base of the mountain, this indoor/outdoor center not only has a total of 16 courts, but also hosts a variety of camps and tournaments throughout the summer.
Old Town Hot Springs has three outdoor courts at Third and Oak streets downtown, and Howelsen Hill Sports Complex offers two free outdoor courts, available on a first-come, first-served basis.