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What to Pack for an Aspen Summer Vacation

Aspen in the Summer
12 Jun 2023
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Summertime is one of the most beautiful times to spend in Aspen with its moderate temperatures and abundant outdoor activities. Packing for a trip to Aspen requires careful planning, however, as the temperature can vary wildly within the day. Summer mornings and evenings are often cool and crisp, and the day can warm rapidly. Sun exposure is also a challenge at this high altitude, so protecting your skin and eyes is also necessary when venturing outdoors. 


Warm weather and beautiful scenery make summer days in the mountains a great time to enjoy being outside. Because Aspen weather tends to vary throughout the day, it’s best to dress in layers and be prepared for anything the day may throw at you.

We suggest the following:

Lightweight waterproof jacket

Summer afternoons in the mountains often mean thunderstorms. Even the most bluebird of days can quickly turn into a downpour, so it’s best to bring a light, waterproof jacket or shell with you wherever you go. If you are planning a more active excursion, plan ahead (i.e. leave early for any hikes in the mountains before storm clouds roll in,) and make sure to bring a jacket with plenty of ventilation as well as protection from the rain. 

Warmer jacket or fleece

Cooler days or chilly evenings necessitate a warmer jacket to stay cozy. Be sure to bring a fleece or warm jacket in the event that temperatures head into the low 50s or 40s. Pack something warm but easy enough to layer on and off to adjust to the fluctuating temperature.

Breathable layers

A non-cotton tee or tank is another necessity in terms of activewear. When hiking out in the mountain sun, it’s easy to quickly warm up. Non-cotton materials are best for wicking away sweat to keep you dry and comfortable.


Between the rivers and lakes that are available nearby, to the pool for guests of Aspen Square, there are plenty of opportunities to put the swimwear to use. 

Foot Protection

Depending on what you are planning, it’s important to make certain that you have comfortable footwear that will be functional for your plans. We recommend bringing the following:

Athletic shoes (trail runners)

Unless you are planning on doing some serious hiking, these will be more than sufficient for your hikes. You’ll also be able to wear these for town outings or any sort of activity where you will be on your feet for much of the day. 

Hiking boots

If you are planning a more difficult hike, Pyramid Peak, for example, then a durable pair of hiking boots will provide good stability for your feet and ankles for tough climbs. They are a solid investment if you plan on hitting the trails throughout the summer.

Water shoes

A good pair of water shoes or sandals (like those by Chaco or Teva) are great for walking easily across streams in the mountains as well as doing any water activity. Most water shoes and sandals are easy enough to carry in a pack if you want to bring them with you as an extra pair of shoes while wearing your trail runners.

Good hiking socks

You can’t underestimate the importance of a great pair of hiking socks. Good socks will not only keep your feet comfortable and dry, but they will also prevent blisters and hotspots by doing so. A good sock will have extra cushion in the toe box and heel area for blister protection as well as extra impact resistance for longer days on your feet. Many wool blend options are still suitable for warmer weather and won’t get as smelly as other synthetic types.

Sun Protection

We’ve said it before, and we will reiterate it here: sunscreen and sun protection are an absolute must in the Colorado mountains. Research indicates that for every 1,000 feet of elevation gain, the sun's UV rays intensify by 8-10 percent because of the thinning atmosphere. Because of this increase in UV exposure, you will likely require a higher SPF protection than you would elsewhere, so make sure to pack plenty of sunscreen. Wearing a brimmed hat is also a good way to keep skin protected and help to prevent heat stroke.


Eye protection is also vital. Did you know that your eyes can get sunburned? In the bright Colorado sun, it's all too common. Include a pair of 100% UVA/UVB-blocking sunglasses so you can protect your eye health.


Lastly, it’s worth mentioning that a water bottle is of extreme importance if you are planning on an active day, be aware that your body dehydrates more quickly at higher elevations (twice as fast as at sea level, in fact). Make sure to pack your favorite refillable bottle for the trip. 

Clothing for a Night Out

Mountain towns of Colorado tend to be casual, even in high-end destinations like Aspen. As such, jeans are acceptable in nearly every type of situation, though many visitors opt to dress up depending on their plans.


There’s an “anything goes” type of attitude that makes planning for a night out fairly simple. Our recommendations include:


  • Jeans

  • Comfortable shoes for Aspen’s cobblestone streets

  • A jacket for chilly nights

Of course, you can pack dressier options for special occasions, and you will still feel comfortable and blend in with the crowd. Aspen crowds tend to be a mix of casual and fashionably dressed, so it’s easy to go with the flow.

Time to Pack for Your Summer Getaway

Summers in Aspen are ideal for that vacation getaway with extraordinary temperatures, beautiful scenery, and plenty of things to do. When you choose Aspen Square condominium lodging, you get the benefit of hotel services combined with the comfort of home in a fantastic downtown Aspen location with easy access to the mountain, entertainment, and dining. 


Our condominium hotel includes luxury features such as well-equipped kitchens, wood-burning fireplaces, and private balconies with the convenience of hotel services such as a front desk, concierge, bell staff, and daily housekeeping. 


Contact the concierge at Aspen Square to plan your trip to Aspen this summer. Call (970) 925-1000 and let us help you get your vacation started!