If your family loves to hike, Beaver Creek is the place for you. Whether you’re interested in exploring on your own, taking a leisurely lift-served stroll across the mountain, or you prefer a rigorous climb up one of Colorado’s 14,000-foot peaks, the Beaver Creek Hiking Center has a knowledgeable staff of well- trained guides. Beaver Creek Stables offer one- and two-hour horseback rides as well as three-hour picnic rides. Horseback rides are available for riders ages 7 and older and younger buckaroos may enjoy complimentary tame pony rides in the stable arena. If movies under the stars sounds like fun, bring the whole family out for a great selection of family movies at the base of Beaver Creek on the Back Lawn. New this year: Wednesday Night Music Experience concerts will feature various artists throughout July and August from 6-7 p.m. and are free and fun for the whole family.
Black Canyon of the Gunnison is a fabulous, rugged looking canyon, and it's remote enough that it has the feeling of being undiscovered. Steep cliff walls rise up from the Gunnison River, creating a narrow and dramatic canyon. The depth of the canyon is around 2,000 feet, with Gunnison Point and Chasm View at just over 1,800 feet and Warner Point at 2,722 feet.
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.
The ski resort town of Vail is one of the best places to visit in Colorado in winter but it's also a pleasant place to enjoy at any time of year. When it comes to skiing, this is one of the top ski resorts in Colorado, with seemingly endless runs for all levels of skiers. The town at the base of the ski hill is postcard cute, with chalet-style restaurants, shops, and hotels that make you feel like you are in the heart of the Alps. This is a high-end resort with luxury hotels, fine dining, and designer stores.
With breathtaking mountain scenery everywhere you look, even the journey to your Estes Park cabin rental will be enjoyable. The main airport in the area is Denver International Airport, which lies about 75 miles southeast of Estes Park. At the airport, you have access to nearly a dozen different car rental companies and will be able to find the perfect vehicle for your drive to Estes Park. Several highways take you to the town, including U.S. Routes 34 and 36 and State Highway 7.
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Cow Creek Trail follows Cow Creek, with its many beaver ponds, extending past the Bridal Falls turnoff as the Dark Mountain trail, then joining the Black Canyon trail to intersect the Lawn Lake trail shortly below the lake. North Boundary Trail connects to the Lost Lake trail system. North Fork Trail begins outside of the park in the Comanche Peak Wilderness before reaching the park boundary and ending at Lost Lake. Stormy Peaks Trail connects Colorado State University's Pingree Park campus in the Comanche Peak Wilderness and the North Fork Trail inside the park.
Home to Colorado’s Vail Ski Resort, Vail is a trendy vacation town located at the base of Vail Mountain and attracts people for its skiing and snowboarding scene, as well as its dining, shopping and arts. It is also a popular summertime destination, offering golfing and hiking opportunities, along with cultural festivals. People also come her to go fly fishing at Gore Creek, which runs through the center of town.
Another one of the state’s most popular skiing and snowboarding destinations, Steamboat Springs may be a winter wonderland during the chillier months of the year, but the summer brings an endless landscape of green dotted with brilliant wildflowers. This is when this Wild West town really comes alive, with visitors enjoying fly fishing, inner tube rides and rafting trips on the Yampa River, endless scenic hiking and mountain biking trails, and natural hot springs that are ideal for soothing sore muscles afterward. If you can be here around late June/early July, you can attend the legendary annual Hot Air Balloon Rodeo and Art in the Park festival which boasts an extensive display of colorful hot air balloons along with some 50 artist vendors, live entertainment, food and drink vendors, and an interactive children’s art area.
Summer is the busy season in Rocky Mountain National Park, with the most popular activities being hiking, wildlife viewing, camping, fishing, horseback riding, climbing, and bouldering. Winter in the park holds its own unique beauty and attractions. Many of the roads are open year-round, although closures may occur due to weather conditions. People often come here at this time of year to snowshoe or cross-country ski, and ranger-led tours are offered in both of these sports.
With many peaks and granite rock formations, there are lots of rock climbing opportunities. Some favorite climbs include the aptly-named Lumpy Ridge and Longs Peak. Whether you prefer bouldering, mountaineering, rock climbing, or ice climbing, the park has something for climbers of all levels. In the winter, opportunities for snowshoeing, skiing, and sledding draw all levels of explorers. If you're in the western part of the park, visit Grand Lake. This breathtaking lake is the state's largest natural body of water, promising scenic views and plenty of outdoor fun.
Once you have checked into your cozy lodging accommodations, slip into plush monogrammed robes and relax by the fire or in your private outdoor hot tub with a glass of the resorts signature Infinite Monkey Thereom Cab Franc or Chardonnay wine. Then head over to Chipeta Resort’s full-service Spa and immerse yourself in a wide variety of pampering treatment options, the Cedar Circular Sauna, Steam Room and two outdoor thermal pools.
At about 68 million years ago, the Front Range began to rise again due to the Laramide orogeny in the west. During the Cenozoic era, block uplift formed the present Rocky Mountains. The geologic composition of Rocky Mountain National Park was also affected by deformation and erosion during that era. The uplift disrupted the older drainage patterns and created the present drainage patterns.
The Alps Boulder Canyon Inn is an award-winning boutique bed and breakfast in the heart of scenic Boulder Canyon. Offering an unforgettable Boulder experience, the Inn features luxurious accommodations, excellent cuisine, and outstanding service. Surrounding by Boulder's magnificent mountain parks and just a short stroll from downtown Boulder and all its attractions, the Inn is an ideal place for both business and leisure travelers to take advantage of everything the town has to offer.
If you needed a reason to visit Keystone this summer, here are several: Cupcakes and Canvases, Bike-In Movies, Kidtopia Kids Theatre, festivals such as Snake River Festival and Cirque D’Wheels, Model Boat Regata. If those don’t keep you busy, try Adventure Point Summer SNOW Tubing Hill, Kidtopia Play Park, Lakeside SUP, paddle boating, kayaking, GPS Geo-Cache Adventure, Keystone Science School Day Camps, miniature golf and dinner wagon rides. There are plenty of freebies, too, including a free scenic ride for kids 12 and under and if you’re staying at the resort, the Kidtopia Children’s Theatre in the Quaking Aspen Amphitheatre is free on Fridays.
The complex interactions of elevation, slope, exposure and regional-scale air masses determine the climate within the park, which is noted for its extreme weather patterns. A "collision of air masses" from several directions produces some of the key weather events in the region. When cold arctic air from the north meets warm moist air from the Gulf of Mexico at the Front Range, "intense, very wet snowfalls with total snow depth measured in the feet" accumulate in the park.