Skiers looking for information on B&Bs in Rocky Mountain states can get the lowdown from Kate Peterson Winters of B&B Rocky Mountains, P.O. Box 804, Colorado Springs, Colo. 80901. Winters represents more than 100 homes/inns in Colorado, Montana, Wyoming, New Mexico, Utah. Winters and members of her staff inspect all properties listed on their five-state list. Winters insists that all accommodations must "meet standards set for cleanliness, comfort." A choice of budget, moderate, luxury accommodations. Modest homes to elegant Victorians.
Winters puts out a directory ($3) that describes the B&Bs/inns. Or you can call for reservations weekdays (11 a.m. till 4 p.m.) at (303) 630-3433.
Note: We've heard good reports about the Hearthstone Inn at Colorado Springs. Could be a nice hideaway for the holidays. The Hearthstone is a Queen Anne-style structure built in 1884. Hearthstone Inn, 506 N. Cascade Ave., Colorado Springs, Colo. 80903. Telephone (303) 473-4413. Rates: $45/$60.
The people who put out the popular Air Travel Card are offering insurance benefits. The new program provides business travelers with $600,000 in air travel coverage. Subscribers also get up to $5,000 protection for lost or stolen luggage. Other features: medical/dental health, evacuation/repatriation assistance. In addition, ATC tacks on $20,000 in collision insurance for rental cars. The annual fee for all this is $54.75. If you travel frequently it's a bargain. Some charge card operators add on up to $13 per trip for insurance. For details call toll-free (800) 854-9600.
What with the Bicentennial coming up in '88, everyone's talking about Australia. This has been a great year for the country Down Under, but next year promises to set records. Better make reservations now. Hotels will be filling up early. Particularly in Brisbane where Expo 88 will be staged.
Here's an offbeat trip that sounds like fun for anyone traveling to Australia. The nifty new Lady Hawkesbury cruise ship is doing regular trips on the Hawkesbury River outside Sydney. Air-conditioned staterooms, lounges, bars, sun deck, swimming pool. The ship explores rugged gorges of the lower Hawkesbury, cruises upstream to fertile farmlands. Shore excursions take in Wisemans Ferry, Windsor, the convict-built Great Northern Road, Macdonald Valley. (Dancing on board in the evening.) Two nights will cost you $326 U.S. for a deluxe stateroom. For a four-night cruise it's $553 U.S. Price includes all meals, the captain's cocktail party and a barbecue ashore.
In California call toll-free (800) 445-0190. Outside California dial (800) 551-2012. (The Lady Hawkesbury is operated by Captain Cook Cruises of Sydney.)
For Wine Buffs
A new folder in the mails lists 141 wineries in Northern California that welcome visitors. Sonoma, Napa, Mendocino, Lake counties. A detailed map pinpoints dozens of stops. The 12-page guide gives addresses, tips on tasting hours. Tells about tours (including several balloon flights featuring vineyards). At St. Helena the Robert Mondavi Winery provides Christmas music, art exhibits. These tours zero in on the Valley of the Moon, the Russian River, the Alexander Valley. (In Lake County, actress Lillie Langtry's 1880s home is open to guests.) For a free copy listing all 141 wineries, send a stamped, self-addressed business-size envelope to the Redwood Empire Assn., One Market Plaza, Spear Street Tower, San Francisco 94105.
San Francisco's little 144-room Hotel Bedford has the hook out for winter visitors. Rates for a holiday shopping package are pegged at $64 for either a single or a double room, including discounts at Pier 39 shops/restaurants, reduced prices at Macy's beauty salon, complimentary wine. For seniors (55 or older) the same $64 gets you a room, full American breakfast daily, wine, discounts at Pier 39.
Hotel Bedford, 761 Post St., San Francisco 94109. Telephone toll-free (800) 652-1889 (in California) or (800) 227-5642 outside the state.
You can hit the rails at bargain fares between now and May with Amtrak. If your one-way fare is $60 or more you travel round trip for only $7 extra. For example, a trip to San Francisco and back to Los Angeles will cost you only $71. This is a saving of $57 off the posted rate. The One-Way Plus fare is good anywhere Amtrak goes. Note: A blackout will be in effect during the holidays (Nov. 24-29 and Dec. 16-Jan. 3). Contact your travel agent or Amtrak, phone (800) USA-RAIL.