The bartender, a happy guy named Cale "like J.J. Cale," comes over and I order a pint of New Belgium Ranger and a cheeseburger. The burger is less than six bucks and the pint is in the same ballpark.
Pretty soon my pint glass is empty and my burger gone, so I order a Smithwick's and ask Cale when the season ends.
"April 18," he tells me. "It's always a big party. Last year we got a massive dump Friday that closed the pass, so locals had the slopes to themselves Saturday. Then Sunday it cleared up and it was a beautiful bluebird day. It was awesome."
A guy with a huge gray beard and uncombed hair sits between me and the nearest cute girls. We discuss (in order) nuclear paranoia and bomb shelters, Hellsville/Louviers, growth on the Front Range, and Colorado's millwork industry.
I decide against a third beer and head for the door.
Winter Park Pub, U.S. 40, Winter Park, 970-726-4929, www.winterparkpub.com.