It’s hard to beat a patio lunch on a sunny spring day or wrapping up with a little après on a favorite mid-mountain or slopeside deck. Just like beer tastes somehow tastes even better after a round of golf in the mountains, the same can be say for suds or spirits after a full day of skiing or boarding (or after being inside for meetings!). Groups can score big with attendees by hosting a patio gathering at ski areas or historic mountain downtowns almost any season.
My favorite decks at my home ski resort in Crested Butte, Colorado, are the Ice Bar at Uley’s Cabin and 9380 at Elevation Hotel & Spa. The second-story deck at Butte 66 also is primo for watching the Pond Skim that my kids always participate in the last Saturday of ski season, which is April 4 this year.
Vail Resorts owns resorts round the Mountain West and recently shared top decks from a handful of ski areas.
East Peak Lodge, Heavenly Mountain Resort – New this winter and spring is a midday party with on-snow activities, a DJ, outdoor grilling and more on Saturdays from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m.
Mid-Mountain Lodge, Park City Mountain Resort – What’s fun about this renovated venue is it once served more than 1,000 miners a day. Now, the 10th Mountain outdoor grill is all about savory, barbequed options with picturesque mountain views.
Lookout Cabin, Canyons Resort – Known for its table-served Rocky Mountain cuisine, Lookout Cabin is just one of several on-mountain dining destinations at this resort. Incredible views of Wasatch Range are a bonus.
Hawk’s Nest Deck, Vail Mountain – Perched at the summit overlooking Sun Up Bowl and Blue Sky Basin, this deck is a great spot for a mountaintop picnic. Centrally located and easily accessed by three chair lifts, there even is a complimentary gas grill.
Mamie’s Mountain Grill, Beaver Creek Resort – This on-mountain, outdoor restaurant has a large sundeck. Purchase and grill your own lunch meats while taking in views of McCoy Park and the surrounding mountains. Live music adds to the scene on Thursdays and Sundays.