Summit County is one of the most beautiful destinations in the Country and you don’t have to trek for miles to get the most amazing views. In fact, some of the most picturesque landscapes are just a short walk or drive away! Take your camera, pack a picnic, and pick one or all of these locations to check off your bucket list. These places will take your breath away, and it won’t just be the altitude. 😉
Photo Pro Tip: Golden hour is around an hour after sunrise and an hour before sunset. It’s the photographer’s best friend and will give you that #nofilter, professional landscape lighting. Bonus points if you can get a shot right after an afternoon shower has passed. More volatile weather means more drama which gives you a more interesting picture.
- Old Dillon Reservoir – Drive towards Frisco on the Dillon Dam Road until you reach a trailhead to your right. Hike about a mile up to Old Dillon Reservoir. This spot is perfect for views of both the Gore Range over Silverthorne and Lake Dillon. Very fun for a full moon/moonrise hike!
- Ptarmigan Bench – If you make a short drive from Silverthorne to the Ptarmigan Mountain Trailhead and hike up about 2 miles, you’ll get to a bench on the side of the mountain that’s also a beautiful scenic outlook of Silverthorne, Buffalo and Red Mountains, and Lake Dillon.
- Loveland Pass – Drive past Keystone on Highway 9 until you reach Loveland Pass — also the home of the Continental Divide! There are epic views of Arapahoe Basin ski area along with Grizzly, Cupid, and Lenawee mountains. Feeling adventurous? The hike to the top of Cupid Peak is steep, but short (only about 1.75 miles to the top) and will offer even more incredible views of Grays, Torreys, and Sniktau peaks.
- Windy Point – Swan Mountain Road is one of the most beautiful drives in Summit County. If you head from Keystone to Breckenridge, there is a trailhead about halfway with some beautiful outlook opportunities. If you hike up the hill from the parking lot, you’ll reach windy point – a popular rock climbing destination and one of the best views of the Gore Range – specifically Buffalo and Red Mountain. Local Tip: if fire restrictions allow for fireworks in Dillon/Frisco on the 4th of July, this is an amazing spot to watch them!
- Sapphire Point – If you pass the Windy Point trailhead and keep driving on Swan Mountain Road, you’ll reach Sapphire Point. This point has a gorgeous view of Peak One and there’s a nice short hike that gives you views of Lake Dillon and the Gore Range as well. This is also a good spot for wildlife – it’s been nicknamed Chipmunk Point!
- Keystone Mountain – A popular activity for both locals and tourists alike is taking a summer gondola ride to the top of Keystone Mountain. Up there you’ll get breathtaking 360° views of Summit County, and (depending on the time of summer) beautiful wildflowers. The gondola ride isn’t free, but tickets can be purchased on the Keystone Resort website.
- Dillon Amphitheater – A short drive off of Highway 9 is the Dillon Amphitheater. It’s a picture-perfect view of Lake Dillon and there’s a nice walk you can take on the bike path on the edge of the lake.