Is altitude a real problem in Breckenridge?

Woman in bed with altitude sickness

Yes. Living at 10,000ft is not a simple feat. For many people coming to Breckenridge for vacation, the altitude can cause a shock on their system. You could feel light-headed, have a hard time climbing stairs, get really thirsty, get an upset stomach, have a screaming headache and be unable to sleep, and in general feel like an empty shell of a peanut about to get crushed. But does that mean you should not come to Breckenridge? Absolutely not!

Just like with many other things in life, it is possible to be new to the altitude, and still have a fabulous time vacationing in Breck, but you should be prepared and know what to do if you feel uneasy. We are not your doctor and this is not medical advice, but here is what seems to help friends and visitors that we know have had many successful trips to Breck.

First things first, take it easy, really-really easy, and don't go to Breckenridge directly from the Airport if you can help it. Especially if you are coming from places located at sea level, it is a good idea to spend a few days down in Denver. Denver sits at 5,000 ft and will give you a quick glance at the new altitude, without putting your body into overdrive. You know how climbers first live at the Everest Base Camp before they try to go any further up? Same idea.

If however your plans can't allow it and you go directly to Breckenridge, do not worry, you can still get used to the altitude once you get here.

Start by drinking a lot of water. Some people might roll their eyes at this statement, but Breck is high, and the sun is really hot here, so in addition to your body dealing with inability to breath really well, your cardiovascular system confusing by its inability to pump really well, your whole self will also be quietly drying out like a fish on a wire. Meanwhile you will be too busy running around and enjoying all the activities to notice this, before it is too late and now you are sick. Just get a water bottle and sip on it here and there, it helps.

Once you are well hydrated, focus on yourself. Pretend you've got a cold, which means don't go out and overexert yourself. Instead, enjoy the town in peace. Consider not drinking alcohol the first couple of days in Breckenridge. Walk, don't run. Go early and get plenty of rest when you are feeling tired. It might sound boring to be taking it slow when you are on vacation, but if you are to enjoy all of it, you might as well.