I wanted to come up with a list of 50 things for my 50th birthday, and this topic is one where I could actually come up with 50!! Here is Amy’s List of 50 Things to Know about Summit County:

  1. It’s one of the most beautiful places in the world.
  2. You will rarely be hot. Wait for the sun to go behind the clouds or wait for night.
  3. We sit on the West side of the Continental Divide. Our snowmelt goes towards the Pacific Ocean. I often think that our water has the furthest to travel to get to its destination.
  4. This beautiful land was the summer home of the Ute Native Americans.
  5. For a bird’s eye view of I-70, hike Mt. Royal in Frisco.
  6. We have 5 golf courses which is an amazing feat because I have been trying to grow grass for 19 years, and it’s really hard in this high alpine environment.
  7. Expect your pasta to cook slower here. In fact, expect everything to cook slower.
  8. When guests visit, have Gatorade or Pedialyte for altitude sickness. And maybe an oxygen concentrator.
  9. On the bike path, it’s the crazy locals who are climbing up Vail Pass. If you get dropped off at the top for only the ride down, you don’t live here.
  10. The snow doesn’t melt for the entire winter. We spend a lot of time and money moving snow.
  11. All wheel drive + good tires = just plain common sense.
  12. Playing any outdoor sport, at any time of the year, could include snowfall.
  13. Our kids wear shorts year round. They are impervious to cold.
  14. Never underestimate the athleticism of anyone. We have the most fit and talented athletes, current and former, in this area.
  15. If a local asks if you can ski or ride, that means you can huck off of cliffs on double black diamond runs. If you prefer blue groomers, you better clarify.
  16. Financial status isn’t relevant here. What is relevant is if you ski or ride, and whether you mountain bike or road bike.
  17. Lake Dillon is a community gem. Get out on the water for a perspective that you can’t experience anywhere else.
  18. We prefer that you leave your dog’s poop on the ground as opposed to leaving your dog’s poop on the ground in a plastic bag.
  19. We are a community of outdoor enthusiasts and nature lovers. It’s why we live here.
  20. But, it’s hard to live here – it’s expensive and the climate can be unforgiving. It’s worth it.
  21. Summer is short and precious.
  22. Almost no residential properties have air conditioning. (See #2)
  23. When the sun sets and goes behind the mountains, I call it “instawinter.”
  24. Our High School kids travel far for sports. We are in the Western Slope conference which has them traveling west as far as Parachute and Rifle.
  25. We have a full time population of around 30,000.
  26. We have around 32,000 residential properties.
  27. Only about ¼ of our properties are occupied full time.
  28. Our economy is centered on tourism – we have around 7 million visitors bringing in over $1 billion dollars annually.
  29. Locals take vacations in May and October which we call shoulder seasons. Many businesses close during this time.
  30. People think April and May would be beautiful months in Summit County, but they aren’t so great. We are waiting for the snow to melt. Many locals spend time in Denver, Moab, Mexico, and other warmer climates during these months. Unless your kids are in school – then you sit around and watch the snow melt.
  31. Dogs – everyone has one or wants one. But almost 100% of HOA’s don’t allow renters to have dogs. Therefore, we have a huge shortage of pet friendly rentals. Best to move to Summit County without a pet or buy your home so you can be assured to have your furry friend.
  32. Our population is growing. More and more people want to live the dream!
  33. Our public schools are International Baccalaureate Schools.
  34. Don’t go to the grocery store short on time – you are going to run into at least 3 people that you know. You will recognize many others.
  35. Don’t go to the grocery store in high season on Friday evenings or Saturdays. And maybe skip Sundays too. Best to go at 7 am, especially Christmas and New Years week.
  36. You don’t need to stop at every intersection on Frisco’s Main Street. Only those with stop signs.
  37. Same for Breckenridge’s Main Street.
  38. The Dillon Amphitheater is a must attend venue.
  39. If you want to have the entire mountain to yourself, check out ski mountaineering aka skinning. You can get fresh tracks every day – you just have to climb up the run . . . before the resort opens or after it closes.
  40. You will need snow shovels. Get a few. Teach your kids how to shovel snow.
  41. Halloween is always cold. Your amazing outfit will be covered with snow pants and a puffy coat.
  42. Wardrobe staples: Sorels, puffy coat, sunglasses, sunscreen. You need these 75% of all days.
  43. Altitude and drinking alcohol – 1 drink = 2 drinks.
  44. The fall aspen foliage is stunning – but it disappears quickly. The third week of September is usually peak. And September is a great month to visit!
  45. Summer traffic is exacerbated by road construction and RV’s.
  46. I-70 – love it, hate it.
  47. People come for the winters and stay for the summers.
  48. Dandelions – they love it here. Unlike grass. See #6
  49. Our paved bike rec path allows cyclists to experience the beauty of the area without the risk of road traffic – which is awesome!
  50. We are a caring, loving, amazing, vibrant community. And Summit County is an amazing place to live.
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