Devil’s Thumb Ranch Resort & Spa
Picture this: The sun is rising over the Rockies. You’ve thrown on your coziest robe, grabbed a cup of coffee and are standing on your balcony. It’s a chilly 36 degrees, but it’ll warm up in Colorado’s high-elevation sunshine. The evergreen trees are towering in the foreground while mountain peaks are peeking from the background. The 6,500 acres of wilderness that encompass Devil’s Thumb Ranch Resort & Spa are welcoming you, just 15 minutes from Winter Park.
Open year-round, this ranch mixes rustic, backcountry ambiance with luxurious accommodations and a full-service spa. Saddle up on a horse, put on some waders to fly-fish, climb aboard a mountain bike, strap on a harness for ziplining or see more snow than you’ve ever seen before atop some cross-country skis. Rest your weary muscles in the heated pool or curl up next to the fireplace with a good novel and s’mores kit — the more chocolate, the better, right? Regardless of your chosen activity, the beamed ceilings, cozy corners and stone fireplaces — found in the lodge and in private cabins — are a Colorado dream.
What makes it special?
Book a private dining experience to make one of your nights extra memorable. Choose between the underground Grotto Suraboza, where mood lighting and custom ironwork will make you feel bougie, or John Ls’ Wine Cellar, which delivers well-stocked vintages and lots of privacy for an intimate meal. Each experience will include freshly grown veggies, local meats and rotating dishes. If the bacon-wrapped elk loin is available, get it — those foraged mushrooms make all the difference.
The most “Colorado” thing about this place
Devil’s Thumb offers archery and hatchet throwing! Learn how to string a bow, send an arrow soaring into a target or get competitive with your ax in this Old West tradition.
Best room to book
Looking like something out America’s Wild West days, the one-bedroom cabins are a must. Dark — we’re talking cocoa-colored — log walls and ceilings, a stone chimney and your very own porch will make you feel like you’re in another (very cozy) century.
Our favorite traveler review
“What a great place. This was our first time visiting the resort, but it won’t be the last. The resort is about 3 miles off of the main highway nestled in a valley all by itself. The accommodations are great and just what you would want for a winter or summer retreat. Great staff, good value, good food. Cross-country ski trails that transform into biking trails for the summer. Horseback riding and daily activities for the small fries.” — John D., Tripadvisor
What you’ll find nearby
Just 11 minutes from Devil’s Thumb, Fraser is your entrance to all sorts of winter fun. Go tubing on sparkling snow dunes at historic Fraser Tubing Hill or drive into nearby Winter Park for skiing, snowboarding and sledding. North of the resort, Granby and Grand Lake are just as great for summer. Rent a boat and jam out to tunes as the lake spray cools you off. Jump on the Colorado River Headwaters Scenic Byway to see verdant ranchlands and gigantic mountains. Feel like visiting Rocky Mountain National Park? Grand Lake is home to one of the main entrances, which leads to Trail Ridge Road (open seasonally) and is a gateway to tons of hiking opportunities. End your trip with an orange ice cream cone from Ceaira’s Sweet Shop — it’s both Instagramable and delightful.
Photos courtesy of Devil's Thumb Ranch Resort & Spa