McCullough Gulch Trail, White River National Forest

This trail follows the McCullough Creek drainage up the gulch beneath the massive summit of 14,225′ Quandary Peak. It starts on an old mining road south of Breckenridge, CO, then changes to single track trail as it climbs the gulch. You’ll pass through pine and fir forest, get splashed by White Falls, marvel at the colorful granite, and count the variety of...

Learn More

West Ridge Trail from Loveland Pass, Arapaho National Forest

The easier of the trails at Loveland Pass, West Ridge surrounds two sides of the bowl that makes up the Loveland area and the I-70 corridor over the Continental Divide. Still, at 11,990 feet, this is no piece of cake for folks like me who are used to mountains no more than half the elevation. Several ski slopes are visible from the ridge. Look too for cute rodents to...

Learn More

Vail Pass to Uneva Ridge, Eagles Nest Wilderness

This marvelous example of Rocky Mountain vistas starts, oddly enough, directly beside Interstate-70 at Colorado’s 10,585′ Vail Pass. The trail winds through forest and meadow, then climbs steeply above treeline to Uneva Ridge, 1,500 feet above. Along the way you will enjoy breathtaking views of four distinct mountain ranges as you pass into Eagles Nest...

Learn More

Rocky Mountain Summer at Hagerman Pass – A Photo Essay

Highway 4, west out of Leadville, CO offers a driving adventure that takes you past lakes, among a various assortment of summer wildflowers, and over a high mountain pass that tops out just short of 12,000 feet. I needed the drive rather than hiking the first day after recovering from a newly discovered adult-onset allergy to cashew nuts. The annual visit with my brother...

Learn More

10 backpack essentials for summer hiking adventures in Colorado

Colorado summers are as beautiful as they are volatile. Before you head into the high country for a hike this season, check your backpack. A well-packed bag can be the difference between a great day in the mountains and altitude sickness or — worst-case scenario — a rescue. According to a report based on National Park Service data, the most common contributing factors to...

Learn More

Hikes To Explore Colorado’s Western Slope This Summer

Colorado’s Western Slope is rich in backcountry hikes. Knowing where to find them — and what to expect on a trail — just got easier with a new guidebook by Grand Junction outdoor writer Bill Haggerty. The Falcon Guides “Hiking Colorado’s Western Slope” has details on more than 45 trails in Western Colorado. It doesn’t have just...

Learn More

Vail Nature Center expands hiking schedule

Walking Mountains Science Center and the Vail Recreation District’s hiking schedule kicks off in June 2017 with added trails, more peaks and learning on public lands. The Backcountry Hiking program, centered out of the Vail Nature Center in Vail, Colorado, runs from the beginning of June through the end of October, catching the summer wildflower blooms along with...

Learn More

Public Library Card in Colorado Offers Hiking Perks

When it comes to Colorado’s great outdoors, the Mesa County Public Libraries are here to help connect you to local scenic hiking trails at no cost. Bob Kretschman, Public Information Manager of the Mesa County Public Libraries said, “With a library card you can do a lot more than just check out books. This parks pass program lets you actually get out and...

Learn More

Spruce beetle infestation crosses Continental Divide

The devastating spruce beetle infestation in the San Juan Mountains has crossed the Continental Divide, and within the next few years, will spread into the high country around Durango and Silverton, leaving in its wake an expanse of dead trees. “I tell people all the time: you need to get up there before it starts to look different,” said Kent Grant, a Durango-based...

Learn More

Hiking in Snowmass provides solitude and views that canʹt be beat

Hikers who are looking for a pleasant jaunt in the woods, a steady climb that alternates between patches of forest and open, flower-choked meadows and slogs through dark timber have it all in their backyard in Aspen’s Snowmass Village. The town has done a good job over the years of creating an extensive trail system that now boasts 26 miles of natural-surface...

Learn More

Biking, hiking contribute $1.6 billion to Colorado’s economy

Biking generates a $1.1 billion annual economic impact in Colorado, in addition to $511 million in health benefits that include the prevention of about 50 deaths every year, according to a new study done for the state. Also, walking generates an additional $497 million economic impact and saves some 285 more lives every year from people who use it to enhance their...

Learn More

Hiking in Canyons of the Ancients National Monument

Located in Canyons of the Ancients National Monument a dozen miles west of Cortez, CO the Sand Canyon Trail accesses an array of small ruins deserted by the Ancestral Puebloans centuries ago. It’s a combined-use trail with hikers, mountain bikers and horseback riders welcome. Color-coded diamonds mark the route and “You Are Here” signs display maps at trail junctions....

Learn More

Autumn Drive from New Mexico to Colorado – A Photo Essay

The final day of our recent trip to New Mexico, my brother Dave and I returned to his home in Colorado. Along the way we stopped for some sight seeing in Los Alamos, NM, Pagosa Springs, CO and near Leadville, CO. When we originally left Colorado a few days before, the weather had been summer-like, and we had enjoyed the turning of the aspen trees to their brilliant...

Learn More

Great Sand Dunes National Park, Colorado

Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve protects the tallest sand dunes in North America, and a whole lot more. From the San Luis Valley floor to the crest of the 13,000 foot peaks in the Sangre de Cristo Mountains — the park and preserve contains ecosystems ranging from sand sheet to dunes to tundra — each supporting specially adapted plant, animal and...

Learn More

County Road 2 from Hoosier Pass, Pike National Forest

There’s a reason they call it Summit County. An old mining road climbs from Hoosier Pass above 12,000 feet and is surrounded by several of Colorado’s famous fourteeners. The first half of the road meanders through a spruce and fir forest with occasional views of the massive mountains that envelop the region. The rest of the way is above treeline, offering...

Learn More

Shrine Ridge Trail, White River National Forest

Fog and low-lying mist is very common in the Southern Appalachians. It is a product of the rainforest effect. Fog is highly unusual in the Rocky Mountains, but that’s what greeted Dave and I as we hit the trailhead to climb Shrine Ridge. It was somewhat of a dreary, forlorn scene as we walked from mountain bog to spruce forest to high meadow on our way to the...

Learn More

Spraddle Creek Trail, White River National Forest

The U.S. Forest Service has done a nice job of building trails up the watersheds that drain into the Town of Vail. Included among these is Spraddle Creek, located across I-70 from Vail Village. The reward at the top of the ridge is a mountain meadow that overlooks Vail, Beaver Creek ski mountain, and the Holy Cross Wilderness far, far away. Hike in late September for an...

Learn More

Magical hiking trail in the Colorado High Country

In the mountains near Breckenridge, CO where the trees grow tall is a village where the houses are very, very small. It’s called the Fairy Forest. It’s on a trail that can be a really good time. There are dozens and dozens of houses, some with a pool. The trail steps lead to a more magical moment that only a fairy village brings full of happy fairy things. There is even...

Learn More

Aspen a base for changing attitude about altitude

Just sleeping at altitude will help you acclimate, as more time in the area will leave you better prepared, regardless of your fitness level. But the best way to make the most of your high-altitude adventure vacation is to plan excursions that progressively take you higher over the days of your trip. “Progression makes the altitude less shocking on your...

Learn More

Rocky Flats: A Wildlife Refuge Confronts its Radioactive Past

A barn owl bursts from the tall prairie grasses. Elk skitter among cottonwood trees near an old stagecoach halt. A shrew crosses a track and hurtles into milkweed, where monarch butterflies feed. Somewhere amid the rare xeric grasses are coyotes, moose, mule deer, a handful of endangered Preble’s meadow jumping mice, and more than 600 plant species....

Learn More

Colorado’s Mount Audubon Trail

Thanks to its position east of the Continental Divide, this gentle thirteener has incredible vistas of snow-capped peaks rising above wildflower-filled tundra. Colorado’s fourteeners get a lot of acclaim. But hikers shouldn’t overlook the state’s gorgeous (yet still strenuous) 13,000-foot peaks. Take the easily accessible, 13,223-foot Mount Audubon,...

Learn More

Best places in Summit County, Colorado to view summer wildflowers

Wildflowers are all over the Rocky Mountains right now, but some places in Summit County, COlorado are better than others if you want to get your flower fix this season. Mid- to late July is usually the best time to see blooms in all of the High Country areas. In forests, look for wild roses, yellow arnica and fairy slipper orchids, and in wet areas find tall chiming...

Learn More

Raising money with safe hiking cards

Purchasing a Colorado outdoor recreation search and rescue card could help anyone in need get rescued as quickly as possible. A CORSAR card helps fund search and rescue teams for costs they spend during a mission. Search and rescue teams are made up of volunteers and the funds from a CORSAR card helps pay for their training and equipment. Colorado residents and visitors...

Learn More

Which one of Colorado’s treasured landscapes could stage the next chapter of conservation?

Flowing from the top of the Rockies to the Mississippi River, the Arkansas River is one of America’s mighty river systems. Its headwaters make up an ecological wonderland and a recreational hotspot, cutting through rugged canyon country full of hair-raising land features like rock hoodoos and rough crags. This breathtaking Colorado landscape could be protected for future...

Learn More

Hiking with Your Dog in Northern Colorado

Hiking Horsetooth Rock is a rite of passage for northern Colorado residents, and it’s especially spectacular at sunrise. The wind was fairly calm that morning, but it can be gale force – so make sure to have layers with you. There were only four other people up there for sunrise, and no other dogs. Getting down Horsetooth with a 75-pound dog is much more difficult than...

Learn More

Colorado hiking trail closed because too many people are taking selfies with bears

Waterton Canyon, near Denver, is closed because of bear activity. The popular trail was closed Aug. 28, 2015 because two momma bears, each with twin cubs, and other bears were actively foraging in the canyon. Part of the problem is not the bears, but people trying to get the perfect picture of them. “We’ve actually seen people using selfie sticks to try and get as...

Learn More

EPA is not the root cause + 8 other things to know about the Animas River Spill

On a scorcher of an August afternoon, a crowd gathered on a bridge over the deep-green waters of the Animas River on the north end of Durango, Colorado. A passerby might have thought they were watching a sporting event, perhaps a kayak race or a flotilla of inebriated, scantily clad inner tubers. Yet the river that afternoon was eerily empty of rowers, paddlers or...

Learn More

Get Your Kids Hiking by Taking a Llama to Lunch

Any parent who hikes with young kids is bound to hear a fair share of whining. “Why do we have to hike?” or “This is hard!” And the most common, “How much faaaaarther?” But worry not, dear parents. Paragon Guides near Vail, Colo., offers a fun remedy to prevent such protests: Take a llama to lunch. This half-day, family-friendly, guided tour not only serves as a way to...

Learn More

New Vail Hiking Center guides guests on trails

The hills surrounding the Vail Valley in central Colorado really come alive in the summer months, when aspen leaves quiver in the wind and blankets of wildflowers spread across miles of meadows. Hit the trails with some help from the new Vail Hiking Center in Lionshead, located near the Eagle Bahn gondola at the base of the mountain. “The Vail Hiking Center is our new...

Learn More

Wedding Canyon and Monument Canyon Loop, Colorado National Monument

Most folks who visit Colorado National Monument view its red sandstone landmarks from Rim Rock Drive and its many overlooks. It’s convenient for peering deep into the canyons. However, like most places of interest, getting out of your car and putting your boots on the trail will give you an up-close-and-personal encounter with iconic features like Independence...

Learn More
Page 1 of 4123Last »