Frisco, Colorado, USA Content from the guide to life, the universe and everything

Frisco, Colorado, USA

2 Conversations

Just to the west of the US Continental Divide and to the east of Mount Royal lies a small mountain town by the name of Frisco. Not a travel destination by itself, Frisco is a good accompaniment to the well augmented skiing or hiking trip.


Situated at 9100ft, Frisco's quaint history can be felt in its air, along with the profound lack of oxygen that the residents of Frisco are used to. If one finds one's breath taken away, it doesn't necessarily have to be the scenery. Frisco was founded in 1873, and like many western towns and cities, found itself growing under the added weight of miners and their families. This growth lasted up until around 1918, and then the Depression hit. This almost extinguished the town of Frisco, dropping its population down to 18 in 1930. It slowly recovered after the Depression. Further expansions were made, and it was soon discovered that the mountains and hills of the area contained large amounts of precious minerals, such as gold and silver. Fresh springs, livestock, and agricultural methods were discovered and developed, and Frisco became a place of permanent residence for many people.

Frisco in the Present

Frisco has changed much compared to its early saloon/schoolhouse days. Frisco's permanent population is about 3150 people, with a temporary population, mostly in the winter, of 10,400 people. Frisco now boasts a Wal-Mart and a large chain grocery store, several hotels, dozens of condominium complexes, numerous ski outfitters, its own brewery with a large selection of ales, and a Starbucks coffee and tea shop. In addition, it also has a level IV trauma care hospital, several restaurants of various styles, and a secondary school.

So, What Is There To Do?

Despite its small size, Frisco offers many activities. In truth, they can all be divided into three categories:

  • Eating
  • Summer activities
  • Winter activities

So, here they are:


Frisco offers a wide array of restaurants for almost any taste, each with their own style and agenda on pricing.

  • The Backcountry Brewery - Offering a wide variety of Western foods, most revolving around meat dishes. They have a good buffalo burger. Prices are reasonable, but could still leave a bit to be desired. An all round good choice. Located at the entrance to Main Street, coming from Lake Dillon.

  • The Claimjumper - A smallish restaurant, but looks are deceiving. On the outside, it seems very corny, with it's Yosemite Sam looking mascot, but after tasting their $12.99 (at the time of writing) prime rib dinner, the impression fades. A good location for good meals at decent prices. Situated across the road from Wal-Mart.

  • The Butterhorn Bakery and CafĂ© - Serving a variety of pastries, an enormous tea and coffee selection, and several incredible breakfast dishes, the Butterhorn is a good choice for breakfast. Seating is rather limited, due to the rather small building it occupies. The French toast is a must.

  • The Pika Bagel - A small corner shop, specializing in bagels and bagel sandwiches. On average, they offer around ten different varieties of bagel, and just as many kinds of chai tea and coffee. Very much into the zen atmosphere. Centre of Main Street, beside the Frisco Laundromat.

  • Uptown Bistro - An Italian bistro complete with thick atmosphere and dim lighting. Rather classy, and that tends to be reflected in its prices. Serves brunch, lunch, and dinner. The food is very good, and well worth the prices. Located along Main Street, next to an antique shop with a rather large train.

  • Silverheels at The Orehouse - A Spanish/American tapas bar with outrageous prices. Not a recommended stop, even with the quality of food served. Dishes range from $15 and up... very much up. Across the Main street from the Snowshoe Motel.

Other restaurants are available, such as Subway and Pizza Hut, for more conservative travellers.

Summer Activities

In the summer, Frisco becomes something of a ghost town. Gone are most of the people, leaving behind an almost depressing air in the town itself. That is why most summer travellers will find far more activities outdoors. The temperature usually stays in the 70s, with frequent rainstorms, because of the large body of water nearby, Lake Dillon. The views in this area are spectacular, with greenery to make a New Zealander feel at home.


Frisco sports a rather large marina, offering docking, lessons, and rentals at good prices. You can obtain canoes, kayaks, sailboards, rowboats, and motorboats from a rather large selection. A pleasant idea is to boat out to one of many islands on lake Dillon and camp or picnic. Another aquatic activity is white water rafting. To learn more about how you can get yourself tossed about on a sharply armed river, tours are available.

Hiking and Biking

Frisco and the surrounding towns are connected by a large network of bike trails, all paved and well kept. It is a cheap alternative to driving; simply use these trails and a bike to move quickly and effectively from place to place. But if biking doesn't seem appealing, the road less travelled is often an appealling alternative. As Colorado is a mountainous state, hiking is a nice alternative to other activities. Due to the fact that nearly all the mines in the area have been exhausted, there are a fair number of ghost towns which make for an interesting visit. But even the mountains themselves hold hidden secrets. There are hundreds of remote lakes and waterfalls, all sorts of rare flowers, rocks and minerals, breathtaking views, and elevations. Maps of these mountains can be found in almost any store.

Winter - When Things Come Alive

In the winter, there are two main activities:

  • Skiing
  • Being sore in the hot-tub

Skiing - The Winter Sport

The only reason the temporary population spoken of earlier exists is due to skiing. In fact, the only reason Frisco still exists is this sport; it acts as the permanent industry that Frisco lacks. But as skiing goes, there is none better than that of the resorts and trails in the Summit. There are six areas within a reasonable drive from Frisco.

  • Copper Mountain Ski Resort
  • Breckenridge Ski Resort
  • Keystone Ski Resort
  • Vail Ski Resort
  • Loveland Ski Park
  • Arapahoe Basin Ski Resort

Copper Mountain

Copper is an excellent start for a beginning skier. Lessons are reasonably priced, and the instructors are world class. Copper also has several terrain parks1, and well kept runs, along with a six-person high speed chairlift.


An all-round balanced ski resort. Better noticed for its back-country skiing, along with its forest trails. Normal pricing.


Keystone is slightly cheaper than other resorts, with good trails and shorter lift lines. Better for advanced skiers.


Vail. The name inspires awe in all skiers, save those who have been there. Vail is incredibly expensive, a haven to the rich skier, one who would rather get a massage and eat caviar rather than actually ski. Coincidentally, the largest number of ski-related injuries and deaths occur at Vail due to the large number of rich morons plummeting down hills with no idea of what they are doing. Skiing is also not as good there as it is in other places.


Possibly the best skiing available. Prices for everything from lift tickets to food are outrageously cheap, and you get far more than you pay for. Many more trails than other resorts, with great runs and an experienced staff. A must for any skier.


Arapahoe Basin, or A-Basin as it is referred to, is another good choice, with a well-laid out base village, decent prices and fair runs. They offer a cable-run gondola, which offers good views and a rest. It is very large, and one can get several days of skiing out of it.

Being Sore In The Hot-Tub

A classic skiing tradition, embraced by many. The name all but explains itself.

Closing Words...

Frisco is a well organized place to stay on a vacation in any time of the year. Spring is usually the best, as there is still snow on the mountains, and the weather is warm enough that the snow doesn't extend to lower elevations, making available the summer activities. Also, ski lift ticket prices undertake a sudden plunge during the spring season, making a ski trip much more enjoyable and affordable.

1A terrain park is a run with several jumps and ramps to do stunts.

Bookmark on your Personal Space

Edited Entry


Infinite Improbability Drive

Infinite Improbability Drive

Read a random Edited Entry

Categorised In:

Written by

Write an Entry

"The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy is a wholly remarkable book. It has been compiled and recompiled many times and under many different editorships. It contains contributions from countless numbers of travellers and researchers."

Write an entry
Read more