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Old 03-10-2010, 08:14 PM
 
Location: Ned CO @ 8300'
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Suzco, thanks for saving me from having to look up that info again. I'd rep you if I could
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Old 03-13-2010, 04:47 PM
 
Location: Foot of the Rockies
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Where are you coming from? What is your entry point in Colorado?
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Old 03-14-2010, 02:29 PM
 
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Wink RMNP, then proceed

The 1st of May would be a fine time to travel, as before the summer tourism season begins, but spring well advanced and the land radiant. It will however present some difficulties with certain routes, passes that are still closed due snow, certain hiking trails at higher elevations for the same reason.

Trail Ridge Road, across Rocky Mountain National Park is a spectacular drive, but usually only opens just before Memorial Day. However the Park remains open all year, and is definitely worthy of a visit. On the east side, from Estes Park, CO, one might drive as far as Many Parks Curve, which affords a good vista east. But they also keep the road open all winter to Bear Lake, which resides at 9,475 feet. It is a favorite with cross country skiers in winter, and the trailhead for many good hikes in summer. A very beautiful spot, and very much in the mountains. Some of the best that RMNP has to offer. The town of Estes Park enjoys a lovely setting as well.

It will entail a good deal of driving, but in this large state they can be beautiful excursions, and worth it. Mesa Verde National Park, in far southwestern Colorado, is a unique place worth visiting, and beautiful in it own right. If liking such things, the ancient Anasazi and their finely crafted dwellings, then an even more remote place is Hovenweep National Monument, even further west, with the its formal entrance actually in Utah.

Once in southwestern Colorado it would be well worth visiting such towns as Durango, and driving the quite spectacular high mountain route of US 550 north through Silverton to Ouray. Highly recommended. From there Telluride is a bit of a detour, but beautiful in its own right, and one might continue in the long drive to Cortez, through Rico. Particularly in its higher reaches, a lovely drive, but it can't touch US 550.

Should it prove a practical route in your adventures, I-70 between Grand Junction and Denver is an often beautiful drive. Fast as well. Notable would be such towns as Breckenridge in Summit County. Or from Glenwood Springs one might venture south to Aspen, which defines expensive elegance. If it is open as early, and likely not, Independence Pass from Aspen to Twin Lakes is a fantastic drive. Otherwise one could backtrack a bit to take McClure Pass through Paonia. Although the small town of Redstone, at the base of this slight pass, is nice enough, the only other reason for such a route is to get somewhere else. It may or not be open, but the good dirt road of Kebler Pass can be reached thus, which will take one into Crested Butte. It is a lovely old mining town, now a favorite of skiers, which by all definitions is remote. The only paved access is from Gunnison to the south, which itself is near nothing. But should it prove convenient, then the drive on US 50 between Montrose and Salida can be a nice drive.

Should you find yourself as far south, perhaps in using US 160, then a brief detour to Taos, NM should prove interesting. And in the same general region, if liking Taos, then a visit to Crestone, CO could be in order. It can be reached off of CO 17, in driving north towards its junction with US 285. Both Crestone and Taos are eclectic, each with a stupa near by.

Or in a slightly different direction, the town of Creede, CO, which has gone slightly upscale of late. It can be reached off US 160 from the junction at South Fork. Again, isolated, and it may not be worth it save one continues on in a lovely and remote drive through Lake City. It is a paved road now, where before the higher reaches dirt, but the pass may or not be open that time of year.

I should also give a nod to Manitou Springs, which is surprisingly different from nearby Colorado Springs. And in the same area are the easily accessible and beautiful rock formations of Garden of the Gods.

If all this seems a bit much, then myself remiss in neglecting to mention other possible sights, such as the Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park. Thus I'll mention just two to surely visit: Rocky Mountain National Park, and the town of Silverton. Start there, and you'll find so much more.
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Old 03-15-2010, 07:21 AM
 
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Katiana, I am going to be coming up from NM.

Thank you guys soo much for the help!!! The good routes to travel are well appreciated!
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