Referred to as the “Gateway to Summit County,” the town of Silverthorne is conveniently positioned near the intersection of I-70 and Highway 6, 70 miles west of Denver. At an elevation of 8,730 feet above sea level, in the lower Blue River Valley, Silverthorne is surrounded on two sides by national forest, providing spectacular views of the Gore Mountain Range to the west and the Continental Divide to the east.
Of all the towns in Colorado, few have experienced the overwhelming change that Silverthorne has seen since its incorporation in 1967. Starting out as a makeshift construction camp for workers building the Dillon Dam from 1961 to 1963, the town became a convenient refueling stop along the interstate once the dam construction was complete. For those that decided to stick around, the residents built the second most populated town in Summit County, creating a full-service community of over 4,000 year-round residents – about 15% of the County’s residents.
Nestled below Buffalo Mountain and Red Peak, this 4.2 square mile town offers a somewhat easier way of life than its sister communities. Often referred to as the “banana belt” because of warmer temperatures and less snowfall than elsewhere in the county, Silverthorne averages only 103″ of annual snowfall and a milder climate with an average summer temperature of 87 degrees and a balmy 40 degrees during winter.
Outdoor Recreational Paradise
The town provides access to numerous recreational amenities, including the Gold Medal trout stream Blue River, the Blue River Trail, an 18-hole golf course, 62,000 square-foot recreation center, and four parks that provide skateboarding, sand volleyball courts, tennis courts, playground equipment, and a soccer field. One of the most enjoyable aspects of Silverthorne is its easy access to all the recreational amenities. Considered by many residents to be the heart and soul of the community, the Blue River meanders through the heart of town, providing a scenic stretch for some of the best catch-and-release fly-fishing in the state, as well as ample whitewater for kayakers, canoeists and rafters. The Blue River Trail runs along the shores of the Blue River and connects to the countywide bike path system.
Silverthorne is home to the 18-hole Raven at Three Peaks Golf Course, widely considered one of the top courses in the country with its spectacular setting and challenging Tom Lehman and Hurdzan/Fry design. One can be sure to relish in the lush rolling fairways and immaculate greens surrounded by towering stands of pine and aspen, snow-capped 13,000-foot peaks, crystal clear mountain creeks, and trout-filled lakes. One of the best-kept secrets in Colorado, The Green Mountain Reservoir is a short drive from Silverthorne’s town center. A unique area, the reservoir features ample opportunities for hiking, camping, fishing, boating, cliff jumping, bird watching, and just plain relaxing.
Not only the gateway to Summit County, but also to much of Western Colorado because of it’s excellent location as the first exit west of the Eisenhower Tunnel along I-70, Silverthorne is a prime location for those on the go. Five world-class ski areas are within a half-hour drive (Breckenridge, Copper Mountain, Keystone, Arapahoe Basin, Loveland) and a few others (Vail, Beaver Creek, and Ski Cooper) are less than an hour away. The Silverthorne Nordic Center at Raven Golf Course offers a free “use at your own risk” cross country skiing and snowshoeing trail system. Available from dawn to dusk, December through March, the Nordic Center offers different levels of trails for beginner to advanced.