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Old 10-18-2018, 11:40 AM
 
Location: New Jersey
941 posts, read 413,523 times
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You've seen my username many times and you've heard me say this a million times, but the scenery in the entire West is gorgeous. In this thread, I am comparing Colorado and Arizona for their scenery. I never been to Colorado before, but I've been to Arizona when I was on a road trip with my family driving from the SF Bay Area to Sedona, AZ.

I watched these two videos:

This video is a person driving on I-70 westbound from Denver, CO to the rest of the state's length west of Denver. After seeing this video, I realized how dramatic the scenery in Colorado looks. Lots of mountains, a blend of desert scenery and greenery with beautiful trees. The road trip includes fun curves on the roads. There is also snow cover on the mountains too.


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qDgu9Bw3-QA


This video is a person driving on I-17 northbound from Humboldt area to Camp Verde area. Beautiful desert scenery with desert plants. Some parts are greener than the other. However, notice that there are some boring stretches of desert land with very few plants. The roads may be straighter, but there are some nice rolling hills on the road.


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Rkv-3E5r9XM

I'd have to say that Colorado scenery is more dramatic, because Arizona's scenery can get boring at a few times such as the higher quantity of boring land stretches. Also, Colorado has the blend of desert scenery with sudden areas of a lot of greenery. When I visited Arizona in real life, I did see some boring stretches of flat land with very few plants, but Arizona scenery was much more beautiful than what was shown in the video (second video). I've seen petrified woods in AZ in real life. Colorado still wins and is more dramatic looking.
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Old 10-18-2018, 12:09 PM
 
5,280 posts, read 3,316,104 times
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Don't forget, 40% of Colorado, including Denver, is high plains and flat as a pancake. Some people who have never been to the state believe it's mountainous from corner to corner and everything in between.

I've lived in Arizona (Tucson) for 7 years and been throughout both AZ and CO and think both states are beautiful and unique in their own way. I like to joke, if Arizona and Colorado had a kid, it would be called Utah!

Utah has aspects of both Colorado and Arizona.
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Old 10-18-2018, 12:33 PM
 
Location: New Jersey
941 posts, read 413,523 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cjseliga View Post
Don't forget, 40% of Colorado, including Denver, is high plains and flat as a pancake. Some people who have never been to the state believe it's mountainous from corner to corner and everything in between.

I've lived in Arizona (Tucson) for 7 years and been throughout both AZ and CO and think both states are beautiful and unique in their own way. I like to joke, if Arizona and Colorado had a kid, it would be called Utah!

Utah has aspects of both Colorado and Arizona.
I am pretty sure majority of the flat parts of Colorado are suburbanized, urbanized, or have farmland anyways, so at least that would add to any boring pancake stretch of land. California is crowded for a reason. California has a lot of mountains and there is not much flat land to relieve crowdedness.
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Old 10-18-2018, 12:40 PM
 
Location: Mars City
5,091 posts, read 2,140,934 times
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They're both too dry and lousy.
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Old 10-18-2018, 01:27 PM
 
Location: New Jersey
941 posts, read 413,523 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Thoreau424 View Post
They're both too dry and lousy.
Eww you hate the West. Maybe tropical scenery is your favorite thing or the ugly scenery of the non-tropical East Coast.
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Old 10-18-2018, 01:29 PM
 
Location: New Jersey
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HiddenHighways View Post
Both are amazing states with a great diversity of landscapes.

OP, you haven't seen anything!
It seems like people think the two states are equally beautiful.
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Old 10-18-2018, 05:23 PM
 
Location: Aurora, CO
6,557 posts, read 10,264,564 times
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Each state has its own unique beauty. I don't think I would generally put one over the other, but I do prefer the high peaks of the Rockies. The best scenery in Colorado is generally considered to be within the San Juan mountains in Southwestern Colorado.

The classic near-Denver shot of the mountains on I-70 is taken at Genesee. The peaks are part of the James Peak Wilderness and the highest ones in view are all over 13,000' in elevation. The wireframe below is from PeakFinder - 360 Panoramic Mountain View. It's a representation from roughly the same spot as the video.


I've highlighted Mount Flora, elevation 13,146'. It's an easy, Class 1 hike that's 6.25 miles round-trip from the summit of Berthoud Pass. The vertical gain is about 2000'. I've taken newbies up that hike a handful of times to give them a taste of high-altitude hiking.

Quote:
Originally Posted by cjseliga View Post
I've lived in Arizona (Tucson) for 7 years and been throughout both AZ and CO and think both states are beautiful and unique in their own way. I like to joke, if Arizona and Colorado had a kid, it would be called Utah!

Utah has aspects of both Colorado and Arizona.
I would agree with this. A small part of Western Colorado resembles Utah and Arizona - primarily the Grand Valley and the Uncompahgre Plateau areas. Colorado National Monument west of Grand Junction looks somewhat similar to the landscape around Moab.

Quote:
Originally Posted by cjseliga View Post
Don't forget, 40% of Colorado, including Denver, is high plains and flat as a pancake. Some people who have never been to the state believe it's mountainous from corner to corner and everything in between.
Quote:
Originally Posted by potanta View Post
I am pretty sure majority of the flat parts of Colorado are suburbanized, urbanized, or have farmland anyways, so at least that would add to any boring pancake stretch of land. California is crowded for a reason. California has a lot of mountains and there is not much flat land to relieve crowdedness.
The Eastern Plains are largely agrarian and pretty flat compared to the rest of the state, but, unlike what you see from the freeway, it's not uniform. I-70 just west of Limon is actually about 800' higher than Downtown Denver thanks to the Palmer Divide. The Pawnee Buttes northeast of Greeley rise 300' above the plains, and the Purgatoire River in southeastern Colorado runs through a couple canyons (and has the largest dinosaur track site in North America).

Quote:
Originally Posted by potanta View Post
Eww you hate the West. Maybe tropical scenery is your favorite thing or the ugly scenery of the non-tropical East Coast.
He's from Houston and prefers lush vegetation even if it means living in a reclaimed swamp that's flatter than a sheet of plywood. Not my cup o' tea, but to each their own.
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Old 10-18-2018, 05:47 PM
 
Location: northern Vermont - previously NM, WA, & MA
9,425 posts, read 18,324,231 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by potanta View Post
This video is a person driving on I-70 westbound from Denver, CO to the rest of the state's length west of Denver. After seeing this video, I realized how dramatic the scenery in Colorado looks. Lots of mountains, a blend of desert scenery and greenery with beautiful trees. The road trip includes fun curves on the roads. There is also snow cover on the mountains too.
Colorado's mountain scenery gets a lot better away from I-70. The San Juan range in the southwestern part of the state near four corners is the most stunning range in the southern Rockies. It also has a good collection of mountain towns with a lot of charm found in Silverton, Ouray, and Telluride.

Quote:
Originally Posted by potanta View Post
I am pretty sure majority of the flat parts of Colorado are suburbanized, urbanized, or have farmland anyways, so at least that would add to any boring pancake stretch of land.
I-25 between Fort Collins and Pueblo is pretty much a contiguous corridor of cities and suburbs edged by farmland on one side and the Rockies in the other direction. People like to dog on Denver's location being on the high plains, but I love the drive into the city approaching from the plains with the city backdropped by a wall of mountains rising above the plains. I think it's a marvelous setting for a city.

Quote:
Originally Posted by potanta View Post
This video is a person driving on I-17 northbound from Humboldt area to Camp Verde area. Beautiful desert scenery with desert plants. Some parts are greener than the other. However, notice that there are some boring stretches of desert land with very few plants. The roads may be straighter, but there are some nice rolling hills on the road..

I absolutely LOVE the scenery in Arizona. It's my favorite state to photograph, and Sororan desert sunsets are second to none. Orange skies, purples shaded mountain ranges, and hills silhouetted with saguaro cacti. This type of scenery is at it's prime outside Tucson and Saguaro National Park. AZ does have some blah parts, particularly along I-40 east of Flagstaff and I-10 west of Phoenix.

But Flagstaff is beautiful, like a little piece of Colorado in Arizona (with 12k peaks rather than the 14'er peaks in CO). It's got a similar mountain town vibe and scenery as some parts of Colorado. My favorite thing about Arizona is its diversity of climate range and scenery from sub-tropical desert valleys to alpine forests and snowy mountains ranges, on up into red rock and canyon country on the Colorado plateau. It's a sweet spot in the west, probably my favorite. I'd consider moving there but I'm being called back to New England after 7 years in the Southwest.

Last edited by Desert_SW_77; 10-18-2018 at 06:15 PM..
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Old 10-18-2018, 06:07 PM
 
Location: New Jersey
941 posts, read 413,523 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Desert_SW_77 View Post
Colorado's mountain scenery gets a lot better away from I-70. The San Juan range in the southwestern part of the state near four corners is the most stunning range in the southern Rockies. It also has a good collection of mountain towns with a lot of charm like Silverton, Ouray, and Telluride.



I-25 between Fort Collins and Pueblo is pretty much a contiguous corridor of cities and suburbs edged by farmland one side and the Rockies in the other direction. People like to dog on Denver's location being on the high plains, but I love the drive into the city approaching from the plains with the city backdropped by a wall of mountains rising above the plains. I think it's a stunning setting for a city.




I absolutely LOVE the scenery in Arizona. It's my favorite state to photograph, and Sororan desert sunsets are second to none. Orange skies, purples shaded mountain ranges, and hills silhouetted with saguaro cacti. This type of scenery is at it's prime outside Tucson and Saguaro National Park. AZ does have some blah parts, particularly along I-40 east of Flagstaff and I-10 west of Phoenix. But Flagstaff is beautiful, like a little piece of Colorado in Arizona. It's got a similar mountain town vibe and scenery as some parts of Colorado. My favorite thing about Arizona is its diversity of climate range and scenery from sub-tropical desert valleys to alpine forests in the mountains, on up into red rock and canyon country on the on the Colorado plateau. It's a sweet spoit in the west, probably my favorite. I'd consider moving there but I'm being called back to New England after 7 years in the Southwest.
At least Arizona's doesn't have extremely long flat pancake parts like the boring stretches of land you get driving in Texas. Arizona's scenery is definitely dramatic and Texas is so boring from what I heard.
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Old 10-18-2018, 06:29 PM
 
Location: northern Vermont - previously NM, WA, & MA
9,425 posts, read 18,324,231 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by potanta View Post
At least Arizona's doesn't have extremely long flat pancake parts like the boring stretches of land you get driving in Texas. Arizona's scenery is definitely dramatic and Texas is so boring from what I heard.
Eh, don't really need to jab at Texas to enhance Arizona. I actually like the hill country in Central Texas, it's a really nice looking landscape. There are hideous interstates in every region of the country, be it the antiquated and congested ones in the Northeast, or the isolated and boring ones through the scrub deserts and coal plants passing the Navajo res in eastern AZ.
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