Our state provides never-ending inspiration and ideal testing grounds for the best gear around. Here are some of our favorite Colorado-made goodies.
Inspired by the love of snowboarding and the surfboard culture of the '60s and '70s, locally carved Unity Snowboards are known for their unique design, quality craftsmanship and bold graphics. Designed, tested and manufactured right here in Summit County, they easily outperform mass-produced decks.
Get it: Pioneer Sports, 842 N. Summit Blvd., Frisco, 970-668-3668
Homegrown at more than 10,000 feet, Melanzana stays true to its roots with a Leadville storefront and online sales (melanzana.com). This small but mighty company has gained a reputation for high-quality active mountain clothing in an array of vibrant colors. All Melanzana clothes are handmade in their Leadville store.
Get it: Melanzana, 716 Harrison Ave., Leadville, 719-486-3245
Born out of a passion for skiing, Icelantic has grown from a basement biz into the largest USA-manufactured ski company. Not only are these skis made here in Colorado, they are high-quality, durable and bomber, with graphics so cool you might be tempted to hang them on the wall and call them art.
Get it: Copper Rocker, Center Village, Copper Mountain, 970-968-2318
The days of thick, bulky wool socks are gone, thanks to SmartWool. Conceived on a cold day on the slopes, toes around the globe trust these stylish, colorful Merino wool socks to keep them warm. Over the years, this Colorado-born company has evolved from socks to a wide range of Merino wool clothing and accessories to keep you cozy (or cool) through all four seasons. Tip: The wool socks are perfect camping companions, too.
Get it: Copper Sports, Burning Stones Plaza, Copper Mountain, 970-968-2318
Scott Fly Rods
Longtime pioneers and innovators in fly rod technology, the folks at Scott Fly Rods continue to lead the industry with their carefully crafted, quality rods. Handmade at the company’s headquarters in Montrose, these rods are clear coated so you can see the attention to detail. These are the guides’ choice, the rod to which any serious fisherman or woman aspires.
Get it: Trouts Frisco, 309B Main St., Frisco, 970-668-2583
Cut, sewn and decorated in Denver since 2011, this Centennial State manufacturer wants you to “Experience winter, not the cold.” Their single- and double-layer neck tubes are water resistant and moisture wicking, built with UPF 50+ odor-control fabric, making your February morning face shots feel warm and dry. Go green with the full fleece neck tube—it’s made from recycled water bottles and unbelievably soft Polartec and Micro Fleece.
Get it: Podium Sports, 720 Main St., Frisco, 970-668-9996
Fly on the Wall
Trouts Fly Fishing
Ever heard of a powder day on the river? It’s a thing. And Frisco’s new fly fishing retail and guide outpost, Trouts, knows where the big guys bite.
“Winter fly fishing up here is actually great; there are less people and more fish,” says manager Chris Fildes.
The Frisco Trouts location opened in May 2016, with a sister store in Denver drawing anglers since 1995.
The small but loaded Main Street space is stacked with accessories and apparel. Weights, pliers, rods, nets, fishing vests, dry bags, Yeti coolers—you name it. Riverwear spans hats to waders (women, they’ve got you covered too).
An impressive wall of flies–more than 1,000, from basic $2.50 nymph patterns to flashy $8 big daddy streamers–lines the back, selections changing out with the seasons and natural fly materials like feathers and rabbit fur at the forefront. Stop in early evening for happy hour fly discounts.
Trouts offers gear rentals, beginner to experienced fly fishing lessons and guided float fishing and wade fishing trips to some of the state’s highly sought casting spots, the Eagle, Arkansas, Blue and Frying Pan rivers topping the list. Around a dozen guides are on call, four seasons, seven days a week.
309 Main St., Frisco, 970-668-2583, troutsflyfishing.com