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Old 06-04-2016, 03:06 PM
 
Location: East Central Phoenix
5,674 posts, read 8,720,512 times
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I live in Phoenix, and am dying to get out of this heat as soon as possible. My summer vacation spots are normally southern CA (the coastal areas), and the AZ high country ... however, this year, I'm thinking about skipping CA in favor of CO. Here's what I'm looking for:

* Non touristy town, so this would likely exclude Vail, Aspen and Telluride.
* Town should be small but not tiny ... preferably one with basic services like grocery stores, gas stations, and a choice of restaurants besides fast food.
* Definitely looking for a place with a decent hotel, lodge, or clean cabins, but nothing fancy or too pricey.
* Elevation exceeding 7,000 feet, but preferably above 8,000.
* An area with lots of pine forests, hiking trails, and close to lakes.

I'm thinking some of the areas along I70 might fit what I'm looking for. How would Frisco or Silverthorne be for a week's getaway to a small, quiet area with cool summer temperatures?
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Old 06-04-2016, 03:21 PM
 
Location: Colorado Springs
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I feel your pain. 116 degrees yesterday in Phoenix is hell on earth.

Try Ouray or Woodland Park.

When I was a boy living in Phoenix, to escape the heat one summer we went to Ouray. I loved it so much that I decided then that when I grew up I'd move to Colorado.

And I did.
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Old 06-04-2016, 03:45 PM
 
Location: Washington Park, Denver
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Agree with the above. Also look at Leadville. Very quiet, very high.
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Old 06-04-2016, 04:07 PM
 
Location: Aurora, CO
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Silverton may work, too.
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Old 06-04-2016, 04:18 PM
 
Location: Ned CO @ 8300'
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Nederland
In the foothills 17 miles west of Boulder @ 8228', spectacular hiking in the Indian Peaks Wilderness, an hour from Rocky Mountain National Park. There's a nice hotel in town, a small lodge a few minutes south of town, cabins along the road to Eldora (and elsewhere). Several good restaurants and no fast food.
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Old 06-04-2016, 04:26 PM
 
Location: Southwestern, USA
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Me? I'd pick Salida and the Mt, Princeton area...but there are so many others.
You can't really go wrong where ever you go.
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Old 06-04-2016, 04:40 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Valley Native View Post
I'm thinking some of the areas along I70 might fit what I'm looking for. How would Frisco or Silverthorne be for a week's getaway to a small, quiet area with cool summer temperatures?
Frisco is a charming town, but it's definitely not a "quiet area". It's just off I-70 on the way to Breckenridge. Busy all summer with the marina right there. They do have a fun bbq festival in a couple of weeks. Silverthorne isn't much of a town, really. The big draw is the outlet mall.

Salida is a nice town but even at 7,000' it gets warm (upper 80s in the forecast later this week). You can always cool off in the river like hundreds of other people who are there rafting. It's pretty touristy in the summer.

I like the Nederland idea, had some good times there when I attended CU Boulder. It's quiet and "funky" in a good way. Last time I stopped by I discovered the Very Nice Brewing Company and an excellent pizza place.
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Old 06-04-2016, 05:22 PM
 
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I also vote for Leadville. Beautiful area, cute town, lots of interesting history of the silver mining days, enough going on to keep you busy without it being excessively touristy. Good friends of mine used to have a modest second home there when their kids were younger and involved in winter sports, but it's a good summer getaway as well.

You may need to acclimate to high elevation, however - I did, when my friends and I were there for a day or two several years ago.
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Old 06-04-2016, 05:49 PM
 
Location: We_tside PNW (Columbia Gorge) / CO / SA TX / Thailand
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Don't skip UT, WY, MT, and NM, they are far less tourist / resident population infested.

I would stay off I-70, and as far from Denver weekend crowds as possible.

SW CO, has many nice towns,
If you want to get further into the state.... Salida and Buena Vista.

Steamboat and Winter Park can be nice in summer, as they are more ski centric, (plenty of lodging and food) yet off the main roads. We have been the ONLY guests in lodges during summer stays in Winter Park and Steamboat.

Snowy Range, WY is pretty and sweet!
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Old 06-04-2016, 05:55 PM
 
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I like Leadville a lot, but at 10,100 feet in elevation you need to know you can handle the altitude before you commit for a long stay. Silerton is likewise

Durango will not be high enough, but just a few miles out of town you can stay at any number of rental cabins/houses around Lake Vallecito at 8,000 ft. in the middle of pine forests. I know the lake was severely low (drought) about three years ago, but I do not know if it has recovered or not.

Ouray is, of course, tourist town, but not in the way Vail or Aspen are. The numbers and atmosphere are quite different and it would be a pleasant place to vacation.

Silverton is very, very small with limited services.

I am on record here for my appreciation of Woodland Park. There are lodges and rentals aplenty, a decent selection of restaurants, plenty of other services, hiking here there and everywhere, prices tend to be more moderate, and if you need something from the city you can be in Colorado Springs in 30 minutes from downtown.

You did not specify what you want to do at a lake, so you will need to check maps for the lakes near these locations to see if they offer what you need.
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