Well, folks.. The days are getting better and better with each passing week. The rain and “snow” is finally backing off a bit, making Steamboat’s Emerald Mountain open for business! Perfect conditions for a casual, yet rewarding hike. If you are from the area, Emerald Mountain is no secret to you. But for those of you who are passing through or planning a weekend escape from the city, I would highly recommend starting here.
Emerald Mountain isn’t only for hiking. The mountain bike trails are phenomenal as well. They are very well kept, thanks to the trail crews that work extremely hard to keep it that way. It’s likely that you’ll pass by one of these crews from time to time, so be sure to thank them for doing what they do!
What To Expect
After parking at the trailhead, I typically stay on Blackmere Dr., which is a dirt service road that works it’s way all the way to the quarry at the summit. I like taking this trail because it is nice and wide, so it’s perfect to bring your furry friends with you. It’s easy to keep and eye on them and there is plenty of shade, as well as water running along the side of the trail. Blue and I have been hiking, running, and biking Emerald Mountain for the past couple of weeks now and the conditions have gotten better each time we go.
If you take Blackmere to the summit, it is only a 2 mile hike or ride to the summit. You are then rewarded with an incredible view of the entire valley! And let me tell you, the view is worth the little effort it takes to summit. I know a lot of you have enjoyed the valley view from the summit of Mt. Werner, and most likely after getting off of a ski lift, but treat yourself to a view of Mt. Werner hovering over this beautiful valley I’m proud to call home! All it requires is an enjoyable 2 mile hike up a mellow incline, with views the entire way.
Emerald Mountain Conditions
The conditions on Blackmere have completely dried up at this point. The NPR and MGM trail, which are a couple of the main mountain bike trails, are in great condition as well. You will come across a few muddy patches here and there, but let’s be honest, if you were to leave the mountain as clean as you arrived, did you even really ride? T-bar is another hiking trail you can opt to take, and it’s conditions are similar to the bike trails, a little mud here and there, but nothing that should deter you from enjoying the beautiful hike.
The weather itself has been somewhat consistent over the past week or so. Sunny with a bit of overcast throughout the day, greeted with a cool breeze from time to time, topped off with the possibility of light showers in the afternoon. But I say again, do not let a little rain deter you from getting out there. Just throw a light rain layer in your pack, along with plenty of water and snacks and make the day yours! So come on by Ski Haus and get the maps, gear and snacks you’ll need for an awesome day on Steamboat’s Emerald Mountain!