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Off-roaders delight in the more than 500 mi of four-wheel-drive roads around Ouray. Popular routes include the Alpine Loop Scenic Byway to the Silverton and Lake City areas, and Imogene Pass or Black Bear Pass to Telluride. Figure on the four-wheeling season running from May to September, but you'll have to keep an eye on the weather.
Yankee Boy Basin. About the first 7 miles of the road to Yankee Boy Basin are accessible by regular cars, but it takes a four-wheel drive to reach the heart of this awesome alpine landscape. After leaving Ouray, the route climbs west into a vast basin ringed with soaring summits and carpeted with lavish displays of wildflowers. At 17 miles round-trip, this is one of the region's premier day-trip destinations. County Rd. 361, Ouray, CO.
Switzerland of America Jeep Rental & Tours. If you have the skill and confidence but not the four-wheel-drive vehicle, you can rent one from Switzerland of America. The company also operates guided tours in open-air six-passenger trucks. Full-day tours cost $60 to $130. 226 7th Ave., Ouray, CO, 81427. 970/325–4484 or 866/990–5337. www.soajeep.com.
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