BRECKENRIDGE — Nine giant sculptures crafted of snow are now occupying downtown Breckenridge as the ski town wraps up the carving week for its 31st annual International Snow Sculpting Championships.
It's hard to put into words how overwhelmingly impressive these ephemeral creations are, and most onlookers seemed to agree; the most common expressions occupying the faces of the crowd tended to be awe, elation, and some degree of disbelief.
However, the enormous sculptures are very real and will be occupying downtown Breckenridge until February 2nd.
The nine teams, many traveling from within the United States while others made the journey from abroad, were given a little less than five days to carve down a 25-ton block of locally-packed snow into something incredible.
This process, which had many teams working during the evening hours, was completed utilizing only hand tools.
While the Championships is certainly a competition, the sculpting teams that participate always work to support their opponents in any way that they can. This generally pans out to teams sharing tools and swapping stories, working to deepen an already existing sense of camaraderie.
The sculptures, now fully completed, are stunning all the time but maybe even more so after the sun goes down; it's at this point that the sculptures are lit up in a dazzling array of colors.
Viewing week kicks off tomorrow, Friday, Jan. 28 and goes through Wednesday, Feb 2 at 7pm. The best viewing opportunity is mid-week and evenings. NEW THIS YEAR: Timed entry reservations [tickets.breckcreate.org] will be required on Saturday, Jan. 29 from 10am – 4pm. Reservations are not required outside of that window. More event details can be found at GoBreck.com/ISSC [gobreck.com]
The Breckenridge Tourism Office is asking those who are planning a visit to the snow sculptures to park in the free parking areas on the north end of town and utilize the town's free public transportation.