The 106th Steamboat Springs Winter Carnival rides into the Yampa Valley next week and the City of Steamboat Springs is preparing for the festivities including the street events, Diamond Hitch parade and Night Extravaganza with the world record firework attempt, and will be closing several roads, providing free skiing at Howelsen Hill and implementing additional services to accommodate the event.
Closures will start to go into effect as early as Wednesday, Feb. 6. Steamboat Springs Transit (SST) will operate additional service over winter carnival weekend.
Ski FREE at Howelsen Hill – February 6-10
The ski area will be open normal operating hours during Winter Carnival. Your 106th Steamboat Springs Winter Carnival button provides a free lift ticket to ski at Howelsen Hill during Winter Carnival from February 6-10. Lift ticket must be obtained inside Howelsen Lodge prior to accessing the slopes. One ticket per button per day. www.steamboatsprings.net/ski.
Lincoln Avenue – February 6, 9 & 10, 2019
Beginning at 1pm on Wed, Feb. 6, a one lane closure will occur on Lincoln Ave. as city crews haul and setup snow sculpture frames over a six to eight hour period. City snowmaking crews have braved the frigid temperatures over the past several weeks to make snow specifically for winter carnival events. Delays should be expected if traveling this route.
Early Saturday morning, Feb.9 at 2am, city crews will close Lincoln from 5th to 11th Streets and move roughly 2,500 yards of snow into place for the street events. During the closure, traffic will detour along Oak Street. At the conclusion of the street events, crews will plow the snow to the parking lanes and reopen Lincoln Ave.
The Sunday morning Lincoln closure takes effect at 4am with detours again onto Oak Street. In addition, Yampa Street will be closed Sunday morning for parade staging. With the Diamond Hitch Parade taking place after the street events, these closures will remain in effect until around 2pm. At the conclusion of the parade, city crews will push snow to the side of Lincoln for removal early Monday morning when the last closure goes into place at 2am.
Emerald Mountain – February 9, 2019
All trails that access Emerald Mountain including Blackmer Trail will be closed for public safety from 4pm until 9pm on Saturday, Feb. 9, as crews set up and launch fireworks for the Night Extravaganza. Please respect all closures and understand that additional trail closures may be required prior to Feb 9, signage. Due to the record-setting firework attempt, it is not advisable for spectators to view the show anywhere on Emerald Mountain. Please use designated viewing areas at the base of Howelsen Hill.
SST Service – February 9 & 10, 2019
SST will operate additional service during the Winter Carnival street events and Night Extravaganza on Saturday, February 9 and during the day on Sunday, February 10. Extra unscheduled buses will run during the day on Saturday as well as that night to transport people to and from the evening festivities.
While Lincoln Avenue is closed, buses will use the Oak Street detour. Temporary bus stops will be located at 5th and Oak, 7th and Oak and 9th and Oak. Buses will also stop at the Yellow Line’s 10th and Oak stop, next to City Hall. Once Lincoln reopens, buses will return to their normal routes.
On both Saturday and Sunday nights, the last buses will operate:
- From the Stockbridge toward the Mountain: 2:20 am
- From the Gondola Transit Center toward the Condominiums: 2:40 am
- From the Gondola Transit Center toward Downtown: 3:06 am
- From Downtown toward the west: 3:19 am (3rd Street)
From your smartphone, find out when the next bus is expected to arrive with the SST app available on iPhones and Androids from www.RouteShout.com. View buses in real-time via www.steamboatsprings.net/sst. Schedule information, bus stop locations and times can be obtained at www.steamboatsprings.net/transit or 970.879.3717.
Howelsen Hill Traffic & Parking – Night Extravaganza, February 9
Howelsen Hill base area parking typically fills to capacity early for the Night Extravaganza and overflow parking will be available at the rodeo grounds as space permits. Due to pedestrian volumes, access to Howelsen Lodge may be heavily restricted and/or closed. Once the Howelsen parking lots are full, Howelsen Parkway will be closed to incoming traffic with the exception of ADA access and emergency vehicles. At that time, traffic may be diverted at 5th & Yampa Streets. ADA parking is limited at the Howelsen Lodge and some ADA spaces will be set up at the tennis courts. Parking is not permitted along Howelsen Parkway or River Road.
Please note, the Steamboat Wranglers are at home at the Howelsen Ice Complex on Saturday night against Casper when the puck drops at 4pm. Hockey fans and night extravaganza spectators should anticipated increased traffic and parking around the Ice Complex due to the game.
During the fireworks display, there will be a safety closure of River Road between the neighborhoods of Brooklyn and Tree Haus. This year’s display features a record setting attempt at the world’s largest firework (62-inch) launched at the end of the night show.
After the fireworks, Community Service Officers (CSO) will direct departing Howelsen traffic down River Road to where it intersects with Mt. Werner Road in an effort to efficiently move vehicles out of this area. The 5th Street Bridge will have intermittent closures and Howelsen Parkway will be closed westbound between the Ice Complex and the 5th Street Bridge. There will be no left turns permitted out of the Howelsen Ice Complex parking lot. Motorists are asked to follow traffic directions and signals, yield to city buses and refrain from blocking intersections.
Due to the high volume of spectators, please be patient, alert and follow CSO directions. Designated routes, which may not be your preferred way home, will be used to aid in maintaining traffic flow and egress from the venue during this popular event. It is our goal to get everyone on their way quickly and safely. It’s recommended that you bring a headlamp, flashlight and glow sticks to be visible by motorists.
Additional parking is available throughout the downtown area, at the Steamboat Springs High School and the Stockbridge Transit Center. Please respect residential access and do not block driveways. It is highly recommended that people walk, take the free SST bus or utilize drop off/pick up locations at the west end of Yampa and Oak Streets to access the venue.
The 106th Winter Carnival Night Extravaganza takes place Saturday, Feb. 9, at historic Howelsen Hill and is a pyrotechnics show unlike any other featuring the legendary Lighted Man and a professional fireworks display unmatched within the state. This year, a world record attempt at launching the largest firework will take place and residents should plan accordingly. With a tradition like this, there’s no need to have your own personal fireworks show.
Remember, fireworks that leave the ground, explode or fragment, and similar more powerful fireworks are illegal in Colorado. Please leave the fireworks to the professionals - your neighbor will thank you and so does the City of Steamboat Springs. Please Respect Vets, Pets & Neighbors.
With loud noises and large gatherings, the shelter receives several stray animals. To help your pet get through the festivities or to quickly be reunited, the Routt County Humane Society suggests the following:
- Take your pet for long walk during the morning/early afternoon. It helps them get exercise, tires them out and they take care of business. That evening, they can remain indoors where it’s calm and quite.
- It’s best to leave you pet at home, especially during loud, crowded events like the parade, street events and night extravaganza show.
- DO NOT leave pets in vehicles or unattended in town.
- Never use fireworks around your pets
- Ensure your pet is wearing an identification collar with current contact details. Many pets also get a microchip as an added step.
- Report Animal Issues
- An animal complaint or animal emergency, contact Steamboat Springs Animal Control at 970.879.1144.
- For a lost or missing animal, call the Routt County Humane Society Animal Shelter at 970.879.7247 with a description of your pet, their name and your contact information.
The City of Steamboat Springs would like to thank residents and guests in advance for their cooperation during these closures and wishes everyone a safe and wonderful winter carnival celebration.
Annette Dopplick, Police Commander, 970.879.4344 or email
David Van Winkle, Streets Superintendent, 970.879.1807 or email
Jonathan Flint, Transit Manager, 970.879.3717 or email
Emily Hines, Marketing & Events Coordinator, 970.871.7031 or email