Looking for things to do with the kids after you’ve finished your Colorado ski day? Head to Frisco, a hidden gem destination tucked away in Summit County. It’s got a busy Main Street worth exploring, kid-friendly hiking trails and a storybook sleigh ride. Check out the winter activities in Frisco, Colorado.
The writer was hosted on this trip.
Situated on the western banks of Lake Dillon, about an hour west of Denver and a short jaunt to some of the best ski resorts and snowboarding (such as Breckenridge, Keystone, Copper Mountain, the Arapahoe Basin and Vail), this town is a springboard to a high country adventure. My family and I spent a weekend getaway exploring the historic Main Street, outlying city and surrounding areas of this beautiful mountain town. Frisco rewarded our whole family with unforgettable winter activities.
1. Take a Golden Horseshoe Sleigh Ride
Check-in at a frontier-style tent at Golden Horseshoe Sleigh Rides set the stage for our Wild West sleigh ride adventure. We grabbed mugs of hot cocoa, toppings and all, before settling into our sleigh. Our guide Wade introduced us to Johnnie and June, the trusty steeds that would pull us through the White River National Forest.
During the 30-minute ride, Wade shared the history of the land around us, a lot of which was heavily gold-mined in the 1800s. He pointed out the location of an accidental discovery of the largest piece of gold found in Colorado, weighing in at roughly 10 pounds. We enjoyed the excursion for the big mountain views (Hello 13’er Mount Guyot!) and peaceful peaks around us.
2. Hike to Rainbow Lake
A backcountry winter hike in champagne powder is a must-do experience in the Rocky Mountains. Everett and I took off for some trail time to Rainbow Lake, a winding, single track trail through Aspen and Evergreen trees. The trail gently encourages hikers up to an elevation gain of just below 500 feet—and has earned plenty of cross-country skiing, nordic skiing and snowshoeing fans, too.
After hiking about one mile through fresh snow, we were treated to a completely frozen Rainbow Lake. Here we made snow angels, broke our own trail and watched others enjoy the sights, some coming in on snowshoes and cross-country skis.
The Frisco Nordic Center is a great place to rent your snowshoeing gear, and tours are also available. My advice: Don’t let the winter season scare you off, even if snow is falling. Just layer up, because regardless of the season, this hike is worth the effort.
3. Explore Frisco’s Main Street
Cruising Frisco’s iconic Main Street, it’s easy to see the allure of this high country mountain town. Newer buildings are woven seamlessly into the original architecture, offering everything from dining, desserts and shopping.
With snow falling heavier by the minute, we dropped into Greco’s Pastaria, where we ordered pizza and the house special, lasagna bolognese, which we happily devoured inside the cozy environs.
Rocky Mountain Coffee Roasters, offers coffee made with hand roasted beans. We sat outside and enjoyed our drinks and breakfast burritos while deciding where to head next. Enter: the Frisco Emporium, a three-story shop filled with treasures, from clothing and art to jewelry and antiques sold by more than a dozen vendors.
Sweet Treats for Kids (and Pints for the Grownups!)
Our toddler son had no trouble finding our next spot. Foote’s Rest Sweet Shoppe has always been the home of coveted items. In the 1800s it served as an assessment shop for precious metals. But, since then, it has been transformed into an old-fashioned candy store in one of the most eye-catching buildings in town.
Frisco’s Main Street is a place that leaves room for new players to mesh into the landscape. Pure Kitchen, a made-from-scratch-style restaurant that opened just over a year ago, has a seasonally rotating menu that is attractive to all palates. We decided on the chicken and waffles, veggie burger, and beet hummus. They were big on flavor and easy to enjoy in the bright and modern atmosphere.
Catty-corner to Pure Kitchen, keep an eye out for Outer Range Brewing Company for relaxed snacks with ample seating. Originally inspired by Belgian and IPA brews, this craft brewery has expanded its offerings to include the entire spectrum of beers.
4. Go Tubing at Frisco Adventure Park
Skiing at the local ski resorts isn’t the only way to hit the slopes in Summit County. At the Frisco Adventure Park, TJ & I took turns lapping the tubing hill until we couldn’t tell if our faces were numb from the cold or from laughing so hard watching one another fly down the terrain.
It’s a quick two-minute magic carpet ride to get to the top of the tubing hill, where there are four lanes to choose from. Tubers Right offers steeper and faster runs, while tubers Left are (slightly) less speedy. At the top, park attendants are quick to offer a spin for an even more wild ride. Frisco Adventure Park also offers a beginners’ hill for people new to skiing or snowboarding to get a feel for the sport before tackling the big slopes.
In the summer months, Frisco Adventure Park transforms into a skate park where you can also go biking, play disc golf, and more.
Read More: Tips for Snow Tubing with Kids
More Family Friendly Things to Do in Frisco
Our weekend adventure scratched the surface of the fun that awaits you in Frisco, CO, but there are so many other options in store, depending on your interests.
For example, arrange a customized ice fishing excursion on Lake Dillon with an area guide. Local outfitters can also arrange dog sledding and snowmobiling tours and rentals.
Families who like ice skating will find plenty of outdoor ice skating rinks available. Take a whirl across the ice, including at Copper Mountain and Keystone—the latter which boasts five acres of ice on its rink.
Where to Stay in Frisco CO
We booked our lodging through Summit Mountain Rentals. Our vacation home was a three-bedroom contemporary townhome just a few blocks from Main Street. With a streamlined and straightforward check-in process, it wasn’t long until we were settling into our new digs.
The townhouse had a rooftop deck with panoramic mountain views. And a finished basement set up for a movie night, with a big screen and comfy couches. More than anything, we found it easy to connect as a family here. Mornings were spent making breakfast together in the fully equipped kitchen. In the evenings, we took turns picking a board game to play together. It was enjoyable to spend time in this vacation rental and downshift to mountain time.