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Old 04-19-2009, 04:36 AM
 
Location: Sunshine Coast, BC
10,791 posts, read 7,687,910 times
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From Pike's Peak, which would be the best way to get to Salida:

1. back up to 24 and then south towards Victor/Cripple Creek on 67 and one of the three routes down to Canon City area and then west to Salida? And which of those three routes would be best?

or

2. back up to 24 and continuing west and then south, via Antero Jct., Nathrop, etc?

We'll be in a Jeep and have some 4WD experience. We're after scenic and interesting, nothing too tourist-trappy.

I've read stuff about the Royal Gorge being quite expensive and very commercialized. The gorge sounds interesting but we don't want to spend, what is it? $45 for the two of us.

Would early to mid May be a problem weather-wise in those areas? as in snowed-out closed roads?

Any tips and recommendations along those routes would be appreciated.

Thanks.
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Old 04-19-2009, 06:04 AM
 
Location: on an island
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I can only help with a couple of your questions, you might want to drop by the Colorado forum they can be very helpful there.

I would take Mesa Verde and/or the Great Sand Dunes over the Royal Gorge.
The Sand Dunes would be especially enjoyable at that time of year.

Snow can happen in May, I've certainly experienced it as late as May 23rd. Maybe you read about the recent snowstorm?
Trail Ridge might still be closed.
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Old 04-19-2009, 07:45 AM
 
Location: Sunshine Coast, BC
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BlueWillowPlate View Post
I can only help with a couple of your questions, you might want to drop by the Colorado forum they can be very helpful there.

I would take Mesa Verde and/or the Great Sand Dunes over the Royal Gorge.
The Sand Dunes would be especially enjoyable at that time of year.

Snow can happen in May, I've certainly experienced it as late as May 23rd. Maybe you read about the recent snowstorm?
Trail Ridge might still be closed.
Thanks, BlueWillowPlate, for that information. Any little bit helps. Yes, I thought, from what I've read about the Royal Gorge in the Rough Guide, that it was a bit commercialized, and tourist-trappy. Not to mention the expense! Even if we went that route, we likely would not visit the Royal Gorge, rather just using that route for a way to get to Salida, if it were a nice scenic way.

Yes, I'll post this in the Colorado forum. Thank you.
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Old 04-19-2009, 09:40 AM
 
Location: SW MO
1,238 posts, read 4,040,097 times
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We enjoyed the rock formations at Garden of the Gods. It's been a few years ago, but I think it is still free.

Colorado Springs: Garden of the Gods - TripAdvisor

Garden Of The Gods | Home
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Old 04-19-2009, 09:40 PM
 
Location: Cosmic Consciousness
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Four FEET of snow this weekend in large areas of Colorado...
Your best resource here is the Colorado forum, where the people who really know hang out.
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Old 04-20-2009, 08:21 AM
 
Location: Sunshine Coast, BC
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Quote:
Originally Posted by allforcats View Post
Four FEET of snow this weekend in large areas of Colorado...
Your best resource here is the Colorado forum, where the people who really know hang out.
Oh dear, and here we are, only 3.5 weeks away from going there. I hope not to four feet of snow

If all else fails, we'll head out to New Mexico or Arizona right away and head back up to Colorado later in the trip, hopefully things will have thawed out by then.

Thanks, everyone for your kind help. I'll keep in touch with the Colorado forum and the weather forecasts.
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Old 04-23-2009, 07:40 AM
 
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Mid May for back off roads will be VERY iffy. It's considered mud season, even at mid elevations. My husband have been on 4 wheel back roads in July that were blocked with snow and had to turn back. Make sure you have a really detailed off road book.

Jeeping in the back roads is more of a July/August thing.

We have gotten snow down here on the Front Range in May, so be prepared that most likely you'll get it up in the high country.

Last weekend tons of snow, this week 70's and 80. Colorado weather - erratic doesn't even begin to describe it! Just bring clothes, etc for any type of weather.
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Old 04-23-2009, 07:47 AM
 
Location: Sunshine Coast, BC
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Thanks jkcoop. Looks like we need to be prepared for anything. That's fine as we don't have anything booked or obsessively planned. We just want to go where the road takes us. And if the road is too difficult to take, we'll take another one.
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Old 04-23-2009, 08:25 AM
 
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That is the best way to travel! Have fun. Mid May into early June is a very beautiful time to be here because things are greener (at least on the Front Range). After that we begin to go brown again from heat/lack of moisture.

And run off is high, so it's a great time to hike to waterfalls.
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Old 04-23-2009, 08:29 PM
 
Location: New Jersey
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I don't know if you're familiar with it or if it's too tourist-trappy, but I liked Cripple Creek when I went there a few years back. A tiny town in the mountains, old west feel, and lots of poker!!! When I went there was a biker convention of some sort going on but it was fine, nice and peaceful. It was a good time. I enjoyed playing poker there with the most diverse group - a couple of bikers, me (a Jersey guido), some 45-ish-year-old cowboy,an old lady, a young girl, and an older guy who looked like a doctor or lawyer in an expensive suit. And I honestly have never seen people get along so well in any poker house or casino I've ever played in. Unbelievable how well we all got along. Everybody there enjoyed everyone else's company. Even the surly biker of the two.
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