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Old 07-09-2007, 02:32 PM
 
Location: New Zealand
1,872 posts, read 5,655,419 times
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If you're set on Rocky Mtn NP, I'd recommend the hikes to Mills/Black Lake, and to Glass Lake.

I'll go against the grain here and recommend staying away from Rocky Mtn NP though. There are lots of other areas to explore that are just as beautiful, if not more, and much, much less crowded that RMNP.

PM me with what you're looking for, if you'd like some suggestions.

If you're never been to southern Utah, then a trip to Arches/Canyonlands/Moab is a must. If you do get to Utah, then you can easily miss Garden of the Gods (or Colorado Natl Monument).

Lots of great rafting around Buena Vista on the Arkansas. For easy-access rafting you can also hit up the outfits in Idaho Springs. Also, lots of rafting in Moab obviously.
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Old 07-10-2007, 09:49 PM
 
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I second the rafting in buena vista, did that a few times back when we lived in Co and it was wonderful. If you do end up in estes and head back down to Denver then head west to grand junction that will probably take you 5-6 hours, just as a guage for ya. We once drove to maine from colorado, thats a hefty drive. Enjoy


Quote:
Originally Posted by Fuzz View Post
If you're set on Rocky Mtn NP, I'd recommend the hikes to Mills/Black Lake, and to Glass Lake.

I'll go against the grain here and recommend staying away from Rocky Mtn NP though. There are lots of other areas to explore that are just as beautiful, if not more, and much, much less crowded that RMNP.

PM me with what you're looking for, if you'd like some suggestions.

If you're never been to southern Utah, then a trip to Arches/Canyonlands/Moab is a must. If you do get to Utah, then you can easily miss Garden of the Gods (or Colorado Natl Monument).

Lots of great rafting around Buena Vista on the Arkansas. For easy-access rafting you can also hit up the outfits in Idaho Springs. Also, lots of rafting in Moab obviously.
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Old 07-11-2007, 06:02 PM
 
Location: Colorado
431 posts, read 2,501,956 times
Reputation: 212
[quote=Rob_H;972166]We just spend 7 wonderful days in Colorado, as mentioned above we really need to know what you are doing and if you have kids and what you really want to do. Here is what we did:

Day 1, arrived in Denver late, stayed at Embassy Suites, swim and got a good night sleep.
Day 2, drove up to Ft Collins to look around, then head over to Estes Park and checked into our lodging for the next 2 days. Hit a nice Target on the way and picked up some dry goods (make sure you pick up a pack of waters, you can spend over 2.00 a bottle at some places), cereal, snacks and nuts, much cheaper to have some with you. We stayed at 2 Eagles Resort (I highly recommend) along the Thompson Canyon.
Day 3, drove into RMNP, this takes about half a day to drive up and see everything, I suggest start first thing in the morning before it gets too crowded. We also took the kids fishing and enjoyed the property of the place we were staying. I think this was the only down time I had to do any reading on the trip
Day 4, We left Estes and headed down I-70, and headed towards Grand Junction, I wish now we padded an extra day in there to sight see there, but we didnt, our destination for that day was Mesa Verde. We drove south down I-50/I550, going through picture book scenery. The trip from EP to the front door of mesa verde was 12 hours. But even with 3 kids, we were spellbound by the scenry the entire time.
Day 5, spent the morning going to the cliff dwellings and head back to the front range. Btw, here we stayed at the Far View Inn at Mesa Verde, the restaurant there, while slow and had waitstaff that really seemed like they were on their first day of work, had the most wonderful chef prepared food. It is expensive, so budget that one pricey dinner into your budget.

So day 5 we drove to Colorado springs, intending to spend the next 3 days there (I recommend our lodging there too, Town and Country cottages in Manitou Springs). We drive this time thru Durango, Pagosa Springs, Alamosa and headed up on I-25 to our lodging.

Day 6 and 7 we spent doing Garden of the Gods (a must), Pikes Peak Cog Railway (again, a must do, make sure you book a morning trip), Flying W Ranch, Santa's Workshop, throw in some shopping in old colorado city, 2 nights playing at the penny arcade in Manitou and the best restaurant on the trip we hit up twice Adams Mountain Cafe.

So we did a lot of driving in those 2 days, but we intended to let the scenery be our attraction for those two days and saw the best scenery we've seen jsut about anywhere. Now we have a better picture of where we want to visit on our next trip.

Also my kids got to see wild Big horn sheep, Elk, chipmunks and even wild horses roaming around in Mesa Verde.[/QUOTE Sounds like you did a great trip how did you miss the Royal Gorge and the Arkansas Canyon?
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Old 07-11-2007, 06:05 PM
 
Location: Colorado
431 posts, read 2,501,956 times
Reputation: 212
[quote=Nadine;1049769]
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rob_H View Post
We just spend 7 wonderful days in Colorado, as mentioned above we really need to know what you are doing and if you have kids and what you really want to do. Here is what we did:

Day 1, arrived in Denver late, stayed at Embassy Suites, swim and got a good night sleep.
Day 2, drove up to Ft Collins to look around, then head over to Estes Park and checked into our lodging for the next 2 days. Hit a nice Target on the way and picked up some dry goods (make sure you pick up a pack of waters, you can spend over 2.00 a bottle at some places), cereal, snacks and nuts, much cheaper to have some with you. We stayed at 2 Eagles Resort (I highly recommend) along the Thompson Canyon.
Day 3, drove into RMNP, this takes about half a day to drive up and see everything, I suggest start first thing in the morning before it gets too crowded. We also took the kids fishing and enjoyed the property of the place we were staying. I think this was the only down time I had to do any reading on the trip
Day 4, We left Estes and headed down I-70, and headed towards Grand Junction, I wish now we padded an extra day in there to sight see there, but we didnt, our destination for that day was Mesa Verde. We drove south down I-50/I550, going through picture book scenery. The trip from EP to the front door of mesa verde was 12 hours. But even with 3 kids, we were spellbound by the scenry the entire time.
Day 5, spent the morning going to the cliff dwellings and head back to the front range. Btw, here we stayed at the Far View Inn at Mesa Verde, the restaurant there, while slow and had waitstaff that really seemed like they were on their first day of work, had the most wonderful chef prepared food. It is expensive, so budget that one pricey dinner into your budget.

So day 5 we drove to Colorado springs, intending to spend the next 3 days there (I recommend our lodging there too, Town and Country cottages in Manitou Springs). We drive this time thru Durango, Pagosa Springs, Alamosa and headed up on I-25 to our lodging.

Day 6 and 7 we spent doing Garden of the Gods (a must), Pikes Peak Cog Railway (again, a must do, make sure you book a morning trip), Flying W Ranch, Santa's Workshop, throw in some shopping in old colorado city, 2 nights playing at the penny arcade in Manitou and the best restaurant on the trip we hit up twice Adams Mountain Cafe.

So we did a lot of driving in those 2 days, but we intended to let the scenery be our attraction for those two days and saw the best scenery we've seen jsut about anywhere. Now we have a better picture of where we want to visit on our next trip.

Also my kids got to see wild Big horn sheep, Elk, chipmunks and even wild horses roaming around in Mesa Verde.[/QUOTE Sounds like you did a great trip how did you miss the Royal Gorge and the Arkansas Canyon?
Sounds like you did a great trip how did you miss the Royal Gorge and the Arkansas Canyon
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Old 07-13-2007, 10:20 AM
 
Location: Way on the outskirts of LA LA land.
3,040 posts, read 10,224,465 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zedzul View Post
Hay guys Thanks for your help it gave me plenty of things to look up.

The way it's shaping up is ill have 10 days but I will be driving from Maine so some where between 4-5 days driving there and back which gives me 5 or so days in Colorado.

The main thing looks like going to rocking mountains NP and I will be doing some hiking, would love to go white water rafting if anyone know a good place for that,
and really want to see wild life.

I was think about going from RMNP to arches NP in Utah then over to Mesa Verde and then back to Maine but that might be cutting it a little to tight. What do you think? Anyone know how long the drive is from RMNP to Arches?

Thanks again for all your help

zedd
I would say that you would want to allow most of a day to make that drive, depending on which way you go. If you're heading out from the east end of RMNP (through Estes Park), then you'd have to head over the Rockies to the west to reach Utah, which you would most likely want to do on I-70. The drive from Denver to Moab, UT (the closest major town to Arches) is about 350 miles on that route, which would take between five and six hours, I'd expect. The other part of that trip, from Estes Park to Denver would add about another hour and a half.

If you head out the west end of RMNP, and leave from the Grand Lake area, it appears to be about the same distance to Moab as traveling from Denver, at about 350-360 miles. Some of these roads are smaller and windier, thus will be slower for travel, so I'd say you should expect at least six hours if you go that way.

Either way, there is some beautiful scenery along the way, with a lot to see and do. If you had the time, I'd suggest making a loop, going to Moab, UT, to see Arches, NP, then heading southeast to Durango, CO, about 3 hours away, and seeing Canyon of the Ancients National Monument and Mesa Verde National Park along the way. In Durango you can see the Durango Silverton Railway, which is a steam powered excursion train that heads through some gorgeous country up to the town of Silverton. From what I've heard, it is well worth taking the trip, though I haven't done it yet.
From Durango, you can head either north on 550 towards Ouray, or east on 160 towards Pagosa Springs. If you take the northern route, I'd suggest heading east on 50 and seeing the Black Canyon of the Gunnison, near the town of Gunnison. If you take the eastern route, I'd suggest seeing Great Sand Dunes National Park near Alamosa. From either route, you can head to Salida, then take 50 east to Canon City and see the Royal Gorge. Here's some info on the Royal Gorge area:
Royal Gorge Bridge and Park, Canon City, Colorado (http://www.royalgorgebridge.com/FactSheet.aspx - broken link)
Welcome to the Royal Gorge Route Railroad!
From there you can head back to Denver, or back home towards Maine.
That would be an awful lot to see, and a lot of ground to cover in the few days you have to see Colorado, however, so I'd suggest making the trip when you have more time to spend.

Good luck on planning and taking your trip. I'm sure you'll find Colorado to be beautiful and breathtaking. Have a wonderful trip.
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Old 07-13-2007, 10:36 AM
 
20,321 posts, read 37,826,095 times
Reputation: 18108
Lots of info on what to see/do in this old thread:PtitMousseDuweb is going to visit Colorado
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Old 04-16-2009, 03:24 PM
 
2 posts, read 4,089 times
Reputation: 16
Don't forget to check out southeast Colorado too. You'll miss a lot if you don't get to experience all of the history that happened here at Boggsville, Bents Fort, Camp Amache, Picketwire, Picture Canyon, Santa Fe Trail, WPA. Search for heritage tourism in SE Colorado for some great info. Check out the Comanche National Grasslands and Forest Service Websites for some other great travel info too.
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