Winter spa time
Photo: © 2009 Jupiterimages Corporation
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Kick Back and Relax

After exerting yourself in the great outdoors, consider taking a much-deserved dip in your ski lodge spa. Many ski resorts nowadays offer immaculate, world-class guest services in addition to black diamond ski runs. For example, the Lodge at Vail, Colorado, features a sauna, steam rooms and whirlpools, plus 11 types of specialized treatments tailored to whatever your aching bones might require. Remember, frozen barflies and gondola squatters deserve love too.

For a more authentically rustic experience, Western Washington's Carson Mineral Hot Springs Spa and Resort in Carson, north of Stevenson in the Carson River Valley, should do the trick. Founded in 1897, the Resort began as the St. Martin's Hotel—a secret spot for travelers navigating the Wind River to soak up the mineral water goodness during their journey.

Accommodations and spa rates are very reasonable, but the destination is fairly remote, which means the golf course is still being manicured. Be prepared to walk through the early 20th century bathhouse and simmer in the mineral waters instead—it's what Carson does best.

Read more travel advice from Peter Greenberg

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