Telluride Summer 2021 Happenings

Summer in Telluride Is Back!

It’s the moment we’ve all been waiting for – summer in Telluride is back on! While Telluride has been open to visitors throughout the pandemic, there were many restrictions that impacted various activities in Telluride.

While there are still regulations in place for the safety and well-being of residents and guests alike, many have been loosened for the summer months.

If you are planning a trip to Telluride this summer, please don’t hesitate to reach out if you’d like to take a look at properties while in town.

COVID-19 in Telluride

Telluride is currently in level green, which is “protect our neighbors.” While many restrictions have been re-evaluated and adjusted, masks are still required on the gondola, busses, and at all times for any unvaccinated people.

Lodging, retail, gyms, restaurants, and bars are all permitted to have up to 100% capacity, but businesses may implement their own mask and distancing rules. Plus, you can take advantage of all of Telluride’s outdoor seating and shopping – many business owners have adapted to allow for outdoor activities to ensure everyone’s comfort.

Click here for the most up-to-date information from San Miguel County. 

Outdoor Summer Activities

Via Ferrata Telluride Activities

Telluride is like Disneyland for adults. With an abundance of outdoor activities for all ages and experience levels, there’s something for everyone to enjoy. Take a peek at some of our favorite outdoor activities below!

Whether you’re staying (or residing) in Telluride or Mountain Village, there is plenty of hiking just outside the door! From local favorites like the Jud Wiebe to full-day adventures up the Sneffels Highline, there’s something for every skill level.

Want more details about some of Telluride’s best hikes? Anna has trekked many of the hikes in the Telluride area and would love to share some of her favorite hikes. Ask her about the best dog-friendly hikes in the region!

While Telluride has always had an array of amazing bike trails to choose from, thanks to the Telluride Bike Park, now there are also lift-accessed trails! Snag your day pass (or season-long pass) and get ready to hit the trails! The Telluride Bike Park trails range from easy greens to blue and blacks with an array of terrain for any skill level.

Asa is also an avid biker and has explored all of the trails in the region – so be sure to ask him about any recommendations he has!

Feeling daring? Telluride’s Via Ferrata might be just the thing to get the juices flowing. Situated on a rock wall near the end of Telluride’s canyon is this epic route, which is constructed of metal rungs in the mountainside. Proper equipment is required for this adventure, including a via ferrata rope set, helmet, harness, and gym shoes. After all, you are suspended by just a rope 500 feet above the ground!

There are many guided services in the area to assist your crew on their Via Ferrata trek including Mountain Trip and San Juan Mountain Guides. If you are unsure about the route or need proper gear, they’re the people to chat with.

Allison loves doing the Via Ferrata and has her own gear – ask her about her experiences (and the best parts of the via).

The storied mining history in Telluride has left behind another legacy – miles and miles of Jeep and 4×4 roads that take you to some of the most epic places in the area.

Ophir Pass is the easiest in the area, reaching heights of 11,789 between the towns of Ophir and Silverton. The Ophir side has a narrow, rocky shelf road that can be intimidating for beginning drivers, but it’s a good place to start before adventuring elsewhere! Click here for more details about Ophir Pass.

You can also depart from Telluride and head over to Ouray via Imogene Pass, a 17.5-mile difficult pass that reaches 13,114 feet. On the route, you’ll pass the Tomboy Townsite and Camp Bird (and get epic views). Click here for more details about Imogene Pass.

For the expert driver, Black Bear Pass is a badge of honor in the area. This one-way road descends down into Telluride from the 11,018-foot summit of Red Mountain Pass and has taken many cars hostage. Tight switchbacks, deceiving rocks, steps, and waterfall crossings make this one you need to prepare for. Click here for more details about Black Bear Pass.

Festivals & Events

Festivals in Telluride Banner

While most festivals will look very different than in the past, we’re all just so thankful live events are happening. We can’t wait to get out there and enjoy some live entertainment! Check out the full list of festivals below and click for more details.

Mountainfilm is the official kick-off of festival season in Telluride! Held annually over Memorial Day weekend, this beloved local festival showcases community events and outdoor programming to inspire audiences to take on worthy causes.

This year, Mountainfilm will have an in-person event in addition to online festivities. For those who plan on attending the in-person event, masks are required at all venues, including the outdoor events. Due to COVID-19 capacity restrictions, The Palm, High Camp and Transfer Warehouse will require a pre-reserved ticket, which go on sale at 9 a.m. on Wednesday, May 19. Patron, Ama Dablam and Special Guest pass holders can make reservations prior to that.

For those who want to avoid tickets and lines, Base Camp and the Lawson Hill fields will be hosting free outdoor events. Attendees are asked to bring warm layers, blankets, and low-rider chairs, but leave behind the dogs, glass and tall chairs.

For more information on the 2021 Mountainfilm event, click here.

Get ready to see the colorful balloons light up the sky! Held June 4-6, this free festival showcases a slew of colorful balloons as they depart from Town Park and head downvalley. After not being held last year due to COVID-19, there are some slight modifications to this year’s event. On Saturday and Sunday morning, the balloons take off over Telluride at 6 a.m., but there will be no “Main Street Glo” on Saturday night.

Wind speed is a huge factor in a successful fest, as pilots cannot take off if the wind is over 10 mph and it must be blowing east to west. Either way, the blown-up balloons make for a great family morning in the park.

Click here for more details on the Telluride Balloon Festival.

Nama-yay! The 13th annual Telluride Yoga Fest is back after being cancelled last year. Held from June 24-27, this four-day spiritual gathering has over 100 offerings, including yoga, music, hiking, dining, SUP yoga, gatherings, meditation and more.

Masks are required while moving around, but once you are on your mat, you are welcome to remove your mask. All events will be held outdoors and extremely limited due to capacity restrictions, so secure your spot as soon as possible! The lineup includes Chelsey Korus, Janet Stone, Gina Caputo, Peter Sterios, Coby Kozlowski, Beryl Bender and so many more.

Click here for lineup details and ticket information.

The Telluride Bluegrass Festival will look nothing like it ever has before, but it’s back for the summer of 2021! Limited to just 2,500 people, the festival will take place over two weekends – June 11-13 and 17-20. Tickets will not be sold individually, but rather, in “corrals”. Each corral is 12’x12’ and can fit up to 10 people for $3,000-$4,000 – so be sure to gather a crew and purchase a corral.

This year’s lineup includes Dierks Bentley, the Sam Bush Band, Punch Brothers, Greensky Bluegrass, Chris Thile, The Infamous Stringdusters, Emmylou Harris, Leftover Salmon, Yonder Mountain String Band and so many more.

Tickets (well, corrals) are on sale now. For ticket information please click here.

Telluride’s premier rock ‘n roll fest has taken a different route than the Bluegrass Festival did this year – they’re moving the fest indoors to limited capacity venues to ensure the safety of all attendees. The fest will be held from July 2-11 at seven different venues across Telluride, including the Sheridan Opera House, Palm Theater, Transfer Warehouse, Moon/O’Bannon’s, Elks Lodge, The RIDE Lounge, and Wood Ear Tavern.

The lineup includes Rival Sons, Warren Haynes, Citizen Cope, Black Pistol Fire, Joan Osborne, Big Something and many more. Tickets are on sale now. Click here for more information.

The 44th Annual Jazz Festival will go forward as originally planned. Held August 13-15, this three-day jazz extravaganza also features late-night performances, parades, and so much more. The 2021 Jazz Festival lineup includes Galactic, Robert Glasper, Preservation Hall Jazz Band, The Budos Band, The Hot Sardines, Poncho Sanchez, and so many more. 

Tickets are on sale now. Click here for more details on the festival.

The legendary Telluride Film Festival is back! With an additional day added to the festival, the beloved film festival will be held from September 2-6. There will be 50 programs screened at 11 different venues in addition to a variety of additional events and activities. Be sure to keep your eyes peeled for your favorite stars – you’ll often run into them at the local coffee shop or eatery. 

There are currently no passes on sale to the public – most of the 2020 passholders requested to have their passes rolled over, and due to likely capacity limits, tickets are not on sale. There is a waitlist, which can be found here. Click here for more information about the 2021 Telluride Film Festival.

Blues and brews – what more could you need? With a backdrop of fall colors, this Town Park festival is known for bringing an eclectic mix of blues, indie, rock, and soul performances to the stage along with some of the best craft breweries in the country.

The 2021 lineup includes Nathaniel Rateliff & the Night Sweats, Buddy Guy, Lukas Nelson & the Promise of Real, St. Paul & the Broken Bones, Larkin Poe, Anders Osborne and many more. Tickets are on sale now. Click here for more details.

The Telluride Horror Show is a frighteningly good time! The 12th annual event will be held from October 15-17 at three different venues in Telluride; The Nugget Theatre, Palm Theatre and Sheridan Opera House. The festival features films, short films, special programs, events and much more – and some of the films are showing for the first time in the US.

Three-day passes are on sale now and include special events only available to passholders. Ticket packs go on sale August 1, and single tickets are available at the venues. Click here for more information or to purchase your ticket now.

Getting Here

Getting to Telluride

Thanks to commercial flights into Montrose and Telluride’s Regional Airport, Telluride is easier to get to than ever before! Flights are available daily from Denver to Telluride on United/Denver Air, while Montrose receives daily service from Houston, Denver, Chicago, Phoenix and Dallas/Ft. Worth.

Click here for additional information on summer flights or check out the Telluride summer flight schedule below!

Where to Stay

Where to Stay in Telluride

While Telluride is a tight-knit town that is easily accessible just by walking, where you stay during your summer Telluride trip may make all the difference. Whether you prefer to be near shopping and dining or want privacy, we know all the best places.

Telluride offers a combination of historic charm welded wtih the ease and convenience of staying in a shopping and dining hub. Situated at 8,750 feet, this former mining town was founded in 1878 and much of the charm has stuck around. Enjoy fine dining like the Sheridan or The National or grab a beer at Smuggler’s Brewpub or the Last Dollar Saloon, or “The Buck”. Walk out your door and hike up to Bridal Veil Falls, Bear Creek Falls, or simply hop on the gondola for a carefree ride up to Mountain Village.

Want to know where to stay? Ask us! We know the best hotels and vacation rental companies around.

There are two distinct areas of Mountain Village – both offering a different lifestyle or vacation vibe. The Mountain Village core is situated at the base of the gondola and is surrounded with shops, dining, the Telluride Bike Park, and easy access to some of the mountain’s trails. Condos are popular in this area, as are homes with short walks to the core.

However, if you choose to stay in a home in Mountain Village, chances are you’ll need a vehicle to get around. Mountain Village homes are ideal for anyone looking for a secluded spot to relax in the mountains, but they tend to be a bit further away from all of the action. Hiking and biking are also easily accessible from many Mountain Village homes.

Ask us about our favorite Mountain Village spots – Shimmy is a Mountain Village resident and knows all of the best neighborhood spots.

We know not everyone is into sleeping outside under the stars, but if camping is your thing, you’ve come to the right place! There is an abundance of camping in the Telluride region, including the Town Park Campground, Priest Lake, Woods Lake, Sunshine, and so many more. For those who prefer to be off the grid, dispersed camping is plentiful throughout the region. Please pack everything in and out – and don’t forget to drown your fire! Wildfires are all too common in our enclave, and we’d like to keep our community safe.

We hope you can come and see us this summer!

Shimkonis Partners



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