Winter Wonderland Running + Wellness Retreat

a women-only weekend of snowy runs and hot springs in the Colorado Rockies

Mindful Group Runs | Natural Hot Springs | Historic Cabins | Restorative Yoga | Soothing Sound Journey | Chef-Prepared Meals | Backcountry Dining Adventure

Step out of the everyday urban bustle and escape to a winter wonderland in the heart of the Colorado Rockies’ Crystal River Valley. During this four-day, three-night winter running and wellness retreat, you’ll learn the essential principles of mindful running and how it can help you run more consistently (even in winter!), maximize running’s stress-reducing effects and simply find more joy in your running routine that has nothing to do with how fast or how far you run.

Our daily mindful runs of approximately 1 to 2 hours (including breaks) on snow-covered roads, paths and some trails, will take us through some of this area’s historic points of interest, such as historic buildings and remnants of Colorado’s bustling mining heritage in places like Redstone, Carbondale and Aspen. 

Each day’s run is balanced with wellness experiences designed to soothe and rejuvenate you, from natural hot springs to gentle yoga for runners to a sonic sound journey. Plus, our on-site private chef will be whipping up daily farm-to-table meals that will nourish and delight you. Our off-site meals are held in some of the area’s most charming and unique restaurants known for their award-winning mountain cuisine. 

The home base for this experience is the family-own Avalanche Ranch and Natural Hot Springs, situated at the foot of the majestic 13,000-foot Mount Sopris, near the historic town of Redstone, Colorado. Staying on this charming property featuring a collection of log cabins, you can’t help but slow down and embrace the surrounding natural beauty as you feel the stress melt away. 

Space is limited to just 13 women. We offer private rooms and shared cabins for friends traveling together. See below for more information about the lodging options. 

Winter Wonderland Running + Wellness Retreat Itinerary

Day 1 Thursday  |  Welcome + Redstone Run

Our program begins late afternoon, once everyone has arrived safely at Avalanche Ranch. At 3 p.m., we’ll convene in the Ranch House for our official Retreat Opening Meeting, during which we introduce ourselves, review the intention and logistics of this weekend’s itinerary. Right afterwards, we’ll drive a few minutes up to the road to the historic town of Redstone for a short Power Posture clinic and shake out run. The run is on flat roads and paths that meander through the village and past some of Redstone’s points of interest such as the Redstone Castle and the Redstone Coke Oven Historic District, constructed in 1899 during the region’s mining boom.  After the run, we’ll return to Avalanche Ranch for some free time to freshen up before we meet at 7 p.m. in the Ranch House for a chef-prepared dinner. After dinner, enjoy an evening soak in the hot springs before retiring for a blissful sleep in your cozy cabin. 

Time on trail: 1 – 1.5 hours including stops and clinic

 Day 2 Friday  |  Mindful Running, Sound Journey + Hot Springs

We’ll welcome the day with a chef-prepared breakfast served in the Ranch House. You may dine there or take your breakfast back to your cabin. At 9 a.m., we’ll carpool to a local trailhead for a Mindful Running clinic and winter run during which we can practice the principles presented. We’ll return to Avalanche Ranch by noon for a buffet-style lunch served in the Ranch House. Enjoy free time for relaxation and soaking in the hot springs this afternoon. Late afternoon, we’ll drive to the Hope Barn for a very special and soothing Sound Journey with Karla Hope. She intuitively connects the sounds and vibrations of gongs, crystal bowls, harps, chimes and tuning forks, by doing so she offers collective consciousness through the gift of sound and vibration.

These soothing sound waves pass through the body, offering a cellular reboot to bring you back into balance. The entire session is spent laying on your back with your eyes closed. Your “work” is merely to let go and receive the vibration, let it wash over you and refresh your energy.  Then we’ll attend a special dinner at the historic Landmark Cafe. 

Time on trail: 2 hours including stops

Day 3 Saturday  |  Sleigh Ride + Backcountry Dining in Aspen

After enjoying a chef-prepared breakfast in the Ranch House, we’ll caravan about 45 minutes to Aspen, where we’ll enjoy a scenic run on paths and secret valley trails that meander through this historic town. Once the run is done, we’ll change out of our running clothes for the short drive up Castle Creek Valley, where our horse-drawn sleigh awaits to take us into the backcountry to the Pine Creek Cookhouse for lunch. 

Nestled at the base of spectacular 13,000-foot peaks in the Ashcroft Valley, the Pine Creek Cookhouse offers a culinary delight in an extraordinary setting. Executive Chef Chris Keating’s “mountain gourmet” lunches and dinners, served in the splendor of a log-cabin-styled lodge, have prompted rave reviews. After a hearty lunch, we’ll drive about 45 minutes back to Avalanche Ranch for a relaxing afternoon including your choice of hot springs, yoga for runners–or both! Tonight is a light buffet-style dinner served in the Ranch House. 

Time on trail: 2 – 2.5 hours (including stops)

Day 4  Sunday  | Mindful Reflection + Closing Meeting

Caffeinate with your choice of beverage and a sweet pastry before we head out to the trail a bit earlier this morning. After one last mindful running of about an hour,  we’ll return to Avalanche Ranch in time for a chef-prepared brunch served in the Ranch House. After checking out of our cabins by 11 a.m., we’ll gather in the barn for a gentle yoga class and space for reflection on the weekend’s experiences. Our retreat closes with a final sharing circle and closing remarks from your retreat leader. 

Time on trail: 1 hour 

Important note about the runs: The total distance for this retreat will be between approximately 24 and 30 miles on roads and snow covered paths. Each day’s run in this itinerary is represented by time rather than miles run because the mileage covered will depend largely on your run pace. Faster runners will cover more mileage than slower runners in some cases. These run times include breaks to enjoy the views, take photos, eat and drink. The precise routes and distances we cover will depend on the conditions at that time. 

 

Begin Planning Your Retreat

Winter Wonderland Running + Wellness Retreat
  • Three nights’ accommodation at Avalanche Ranch 
  • Chef-prepared meals from Thursday dinner through Sunday brunch
  • Unlimited access to the on-site Avalanche Ranch hot springs
  • Guided Sound Journey with Karla Hope
  • Daily group mindful runs with your Retreat Leader
  • Relaxing yoga for runners
  • Lunch at Aspen’s famous Pine Creek Cookhouse
  • Free time for journaling, reflection, relaxation
  • Horse-drawn sleigh ride to/from the Pine Creek Cookhouse
  • Trail snacks/energy food
  • Run Wild Retreats Gift bag

⚠️ Covid Health + Safety Protocols are in place. Read about them here.

Depsit: $300

Balance Payment Deadline: January 4, 2021

Max Group Size: 13 women

Shared Room Package (per person): $1,850
Semi-Private Loft or Studio (per person): $1,950
Private Room Package (per person): $2,095

*Shared room packages have two beds and for two friends traveling only. Solo travelers may choose between the Semi-Private Loft or Studio or Private room package.

If traveling with a friend, you may list your friend as your preferred roommate on your Retreat Participant Intake Form.

You may customize your retreat package with various add-on services.

😊 The Flexible Booking Policy is in effect, which you can read about here.

Our mindful runs, ranging from 1 to 2 hours and led by your retreat leader, will be primarily on snow-covered roads and paved bike paths and some singletrack (as conditions permit) within or close to town. We will not be traveling on any backcountry or remote trails during this retreat. But we have selected routes that offer rewarding scenery and incorporate historic points of interest or natural beauty.

To make these runs a mindful experience, we encourage you to run without a watch or GPS device. This helps you be more present and run by feel rather than measured pace. Learn more about this in our Presence Policy. We also refer to the runs in terms of time on trail (including stops) rather than mileage. Read more about why we do this here.

This retreat is considered Level II

  • You should be able to run at least 8 miles comfortably on the road. It’s OK if you consider yourself a “slow” runner. You’ll be able to run at your own pace.
  • No trail running experience is necessary to participate.
  • If we do run on trails (conditions permitting), we will require all runners use Yaktrax traction system (see below).
  • While we will stop on the trail periodically to eat, drink and take photos, we will keep these pauses to a minimum to avoid getting cold.

Required Equipment:

  • The air here is very dry, especially in winter. Runners must run with a hydration pack or waist belt for carrying enough water to last a 2+ hour run.
  • Trail shoes with good traction are required. Road shoes are not suitable for the terrain and conditions we will encounter. 
  • Yaktrax or other traction system compatible with your running shoes is required. Click here for more information.

IMPORTANT: Our runs take place between 6,ooo and 9,000 feet in elevation. Running at this high elevation (even slow running with lots of breaks, as we do) is strenuous. Your retreat leader will support and advise you as much as possible, however, it is ultimately your responsibility to make sure you stay hydrated, well fueled and pace yourself in a way that is suitable for your fitness and well being.