Thrifty Adventures in Summit this Summer

Posted by: admin July 19th, 2019

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This Summer my husband and I decided to save money without sacrificing fun. Instead of a road trip to the beach or getting on a plane to Disneyland, we thought about taking that money and spreading it out over the entire Summer. Beautiful Frisco, Colorado is the perfect place to try something like this, and for an avid adventurer, there is so much to see that won't break the bank.

First up is an easy hike called Lilly Pad Lake. We recommend stopping by the Safeway for picnic supplies before hitting the trailhead located off of the I-70 and the roundabouts. There will be a short off-road drive to a parking area and the trail. The hike is mostly uphill but levels when you're getting closer to the lake. It's a modest trail and should take about an hour and a half to reach the lake. After admiring Lilly Pads unique beauty, if you don't want to hike back immediately, the trail continues all the way to Silverthorne.

On our next Summer adventure, my husband and I went to the Frisco Bay Marina. We were able to rent a tandem kayak for $45 and paddle out in ten minutes. Together we combined our strength to get out of the marina area, past the inlet, to the islands beyond. They started popping up one by one on our right side until we couldn't wait any longer and beelined for the nearest. On our first island, we found a fire ring and a clearing probably used for camping. After a short rest, we went on to visit a couple more islands before calling it a day. On our way back we saw a large bald eagle perched on a tall pine tree. Before we paddled out I remembered the staff at the marina mentioning that one of the islands was home to this majestic American bird and I was overwhelmed to see it before our day was done.

Frisco, Colorado is home to an abundant amount of paved bike trails. They seem to stretch all over and even connect to nearby towns like Breckenridge, Silverthorne, and Dillon. One of these amazing bike trails is a loop that goes around the entire Dillion Reservoir.  It can be started from numerous locations around the Lake and is about eighteen miles. To make a day of it we decided to do the lake loop first and then use the bike path that connects Frisco and Breckenridge. It didn't take us too long to reach Main Street and visit downtown. After a pit stop at a local pub to refuel we headed back to Frisco for a sunset ride home.

Summer isn't the same without sitting by a campfire and burning a marshmallow. Fortunately, Heaton Bay campgrounds located off the Dillon Dam road can facilitate all the marshmallows one can eat in a night. The grounds are numerous and well kept. There are plenty of spaces but we recommend calling ahead or reserving a camping spot online. Camping here is quite the experience; your right next to the lake where the views are amazing. If you have a sudden craving for food, Taco Bell is less then five mins away. Or just pack your own goodies beforehand. Waking up to the sun peaking over the mountains to greet the water is breathtaking.

One of our more thrifty adventures took place at the local library. Frisco's library can be found by taking Summit Blvd to Peak One Blvd. The library is one the second floor and has spectacular views out of every window. There is an entire area for kids to read in and several computers for use. We ended up spending a couple of hours here perusing various genres.

After filling our minds with greatness we decided to cap the night with a summertime treat at Foote's Rest. Located on Main Street in between 5th and 6th Avenues. Foote's Rest is one of the original buildings here in Frisco. You can tell as soon as you approach its steps and heavy large framed door, it's from another time. Inside, however, is a wonderful sweet shop complete with nostalgic old-time candies and at the counter, you will find an assortment of homemade fudge. They also have homemade ice cream, frozen yogurt, and fresh doughnuts. We recommend walking there, as it is accessible to anywhere on Main Street.


On another great Summer morning in Frisco, we thought it might be fun to try our hands at fishing. We were able to get some fishing gear and licenses at the local Walmart along with some snacks. Down at the marina, we called ahead for a rowboat; it ended up costing as much as the tandem kayak we got from them on a previous adventure. We paddled out of the cove with gusto but it did take longer in the rowboat. Once we were past the inlet and closer to the islands we cast out for the first time. It didn't take long to get our first bite, and not much longer before the next. The Dillon Reservoir is home to Brown Trout, Rainbow Trout, Kokanee Salmon, and Arctic Char.

After spending our morning on the lake we took our haul for a barbecue at one of the nearby parks. For one of our final adventures in Frisco, the husband and I decided on another picnic and hike. We picked Rainbow Lake; the trailhead is at the end of 2nd avenue off of Main Street. The hike to Rainbow Lake itself takes only 30 mins, but past the lake is a series of trails that connect Frisco to Breckenridge. We were about halfway to Breckenridge when on the right side of the trail a rooftop emerged in the middle of the forest. Closer inspection revealed to us a small old trapper cabin built out of the surrounding trees. Inside the five-foot-tall cabin was only a small wood-burning stove. After our picnic at the cabin, we headed home, discussing how much money we would have spent on more expensive activities. In the end, we both agreed we had a ton of fun together in a storybook town without spending too much. #winning