Fishing was a popular pastime for early visitors to the park, and it remains so today, with anglers catching several types of trout, including brown, brook, rainbow and cutthroat. Note: A valid Colorado fishing license is required for all persons 16 years of age or older to fish in Rocky Mountain National Park. For current Colorado fishing license fees visit the Colorado Division of Wildlife website.
Need to take a break, warm up or find that perfect place to have a picnic? All of Loveland’s on-mountain cabins are equipped with propane BBQ’s. What’s the catch? Nothing, these cabins are free to use. Loveland’s on-mountain cabins are just another reason why skiers and snowboarders love Loveland. Make sure you stop by and check one out on your next visit to Loveland.
Diana Rowe is a freelance writer living in suburbia Denver, 20 minutes from downtown and under an hour to the Colorado Rockies. Finding the perfect hotel, whether for leisure or business travel, is an important part of Diana’s travels. Her articles have been featured in Global Traveler Magazine, Business Traveler, Away.com, TripAdvisor.com, Latitudes (American Eagle in-flight), American Cowboy, Persimmon Hill Magazine, Prevue Magazine, and Corporate & Incentive Travel Magazine. She’s also a blogger/writer for TravelingMom.com, TravelShark.com and Cvent.com. Catch up with Diana at www.dianarowe.com or follow her adventures at www.TravelingInHeels.com, Facebook fan page or Twitter @dianarowe
The Western Slope has plenty of charms, including being a dinosaur mecca with plenty of hands-on science, and is the heart of Colorado’s agricultural region. At the Museum of Western Colorado’s Dinosaur Journey, visitors can get up close and personal with dinosaur skeletons, a working paleontology lab and realistic robotic dinosaurs. Dedicated to “putting science in the hands of kids,” the Western Colorado Math and Science Center features interactive exhibits in biology, physics, earth and space science, and electronics. From June through October, orchards are laden with some of the sweetest harvests around: cherries, grapes, apples, plums, pears, apricots and peaches. Take an orchard tour or check out the myriad of roadside stands selling fresh produce, jams and ciders. For great biking or strolling, the Colorado Riverfront Trail winds for more than 18 miles through the city of Grand Junction’s picnic grounds, botanical garden, protected wetlands and fishing pier. Buy one/get one free passes are available for six major attractions from the Grand Junction Visitors Center. This “Map to Adventure” includes Dinosaur Journey, Museum of the West, Cross Orchards, the John McConnell Math & Science Center, The Art Center and the Western Colorado Botanical Gardens.
Loveland Ski Area is near to the hearts and homes of generations of Colorado skiers and riders. Just 53 miles from Denver, Loveland offers uncrowded slopes, remarkable terrain, free close-in parking and a season that lasts from October through May. Loveland also averages 400″ of snow each season – more than any Front Range or Summit County resort. Loveland is a perfect place for those that simply want to ski and ride. This is Colorado. Welcome home.
Dunton Hot Springs is a luxury hideaway with authentic nineteenth century hand-hewn log cabins and a bath house with natural hot springs in Colorado. Dunton attracts outdoor adventure enthusiasts as well as guests who are looking for a quiet place to relax in natural surroundings. The cabins are located in the San Juan Range of the Colorado Rockies 8,700 feet above sea levels. Guests have access to a two story library and an open-air wedding chapel. Visitors can keep in touch with the outside world through high speed wireless internet access and video conferencing.
Maroon Bells-Snowmass Wilderness showcases some of Colorado's most spectacular Rocky Mountain scenery and offers a chance to get out of your car and into nature. This area has six mountains over 14,000 feet, along with forests, alpine lakes, meadows, and 175 miles of trails to help you explore the terrain. Alternatively, you can enjoy the views on some of the scenic drives.
Golden is less than an hour drive from Denver and you’ll love escaping to its stunning views and small-town feel. There are lots of amazing restaurants to check out, some fantastic theater to enjoy and a long street filled with tons of quaint shops, perfect for browsing. Book your room at the Dove Inn Bed and Breakfast and you’ll also have a romantic getaway retreat that is very affordable. You can even add in a special romance package which includes a dozen roses, a box of premium chocolates and sparkling cider for an additional $50. If you want to splurge a little, opt for the Serenity Suite, with an over-sized jet tub for two, cathedral ceilings and, of course, a delicious home-cooked breakfast.
I am convinced Chautauqua is Colorado’s best-kept secret and I’m amazed how few locals know about its charms. Located at the base of the Flatirons in Boulder, this National Historic Landmark has rental cottages that are surrounded on three sides with open space that includes 48 miles of hiking trails and thousands of acres of natural lands begging to be explored. On weekends in June, Theatre-Hikes Colorado will take audience members on a moderate hike amidst the scenic backdrop of Boulder Open Space while scenes from “Snow White” are performed along the way. On June 29, don’t miss the Colorado Music Festival’s Young People’s Concert, which is a is a narrated work about a cartoon score being performed at a symphony concert (tickets are $8). The historic Chautauqua Dining Hall (a tradition since 1898) has recently undergone a huge overhaul and the wraparound porch offers some of the best patio dining in Colorado. If you visit on a Saturday, be sure to also visit the Boulder’s Farmer’s Market (the largest in Colorado). Not to be forgotten are Pearl Street Mall’s restaurants, shops, people-watching and Pop Jet Fountain–they never fail to entertain.
Another historic and romantic hotel in Durango is The Strater Hotel. This hotel was special to our family as my husband’s great-great-aunt aunt actually worked here. A member of the Historic Hotels of America, the Strater is one of those iconic Old West hotels where you literally feel as if you’ve stepped back in time to experience the romance of the Victorian era and the rails of the late 1800s. Located two blocks from the train depot and the General Palmer, you can also watch the train from this hotel.
Stay up past your (kids’) bedtime at this grown-ups-only urban retreat that fuses art and sustainability. Side-by-side Victorian homes sit on the edge of downtown Denver, putting you close to the city’s vibrant dining and nightlife. Many rooms feature murals or paintings by local artists, so you can soak up some culture from your in-room whirlpool tub. There are eco-friendly perks throughout, like organic toiletries and gardens where the onsite chef grows herbs and veggies for your complimentary breakfast.
Teachers must help build the foundation for critical thinking and challenge students instead of assigning an overload of material to memorize for 1 test and forever be forgotten. Teachers themselves must be challenged as well to continue their education and modify their teaching based on this ever changing world. Hopefully these new bonus programs and raise in salaries provides satisfaction and it sparks more rigor for the staff in Denver schools.
There’s plenty to do south of Denver on your Colorado vacation. Whether you’re into mountain biking, hiking, history, sight-seeing, or soaking in a hot springs pool, you can find a destination in Southern Colorado (especially near Colorado Springs) that will help you relax, recharge, and reinvigorate. Cañon City and Colorado Springs make the perfect jumping-off points for many of these beautiful, historic western locations. Before or after your rafting trip, try some of these great destinations to enhance your Colorado vacation!
In winter you can try cross-country skiing and snowmobile trails and after an energetic day out there is nothing better than a soak in one of the natural thermal springs. You can visit the Buena Vista Heritage Museum or go on a Ghost Town adventure, visit several working art studios and galleries, or quench your thirst at a local brewery. Things to Do in Buena Vista
The famous hot springs of Glenwood is a must-see and do for all romantics. Located in Glenwood Springs, less than 3 hours from Denver, the historic and local family-owned Hotel Denver spans more than 100 years with many stories to tell, including Colorado immigrants, prohibition, gangsters, world wars, and even a Wild West shooting or two. This Colorado hotel has bragging rights to prime real estate in historic downtown Glenwood Springs, close to the train, many restaurants, shopping, the Hot Springs Pool, and our personal favorite, the Iron Mountain Hot Springs.
Rocky Mountain National Park is home to herds of elk and bighorn sheep, but it also has a population of mountain lions and black bears. Although attacks are very rare, the National Park Service recommends visitors hike in groups since these animals are less likely to grow aggressive when faced with multiple people. Campers should also stow all food in food lockers if available or in airtight, bear-resistant containers. Ticks also pose a risk, and since these can be carriers for disease, it's important to do nightly tick checks after a day on the trails.