Colorado help

Old Jul 14th, 2009, 04:45 AM
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Colorado help

It is hot in Texas and I want to leave for cooler climate. Great deals on Denver but not sure where to go....2 adults, 2 children 11 and 13. We like to fish, hike and all outdoor activities. Shopping not important and like to avoid crowds. I would prefer to stay in one place or two places at the most, on the inexpensive side. We camp, so basic lodging as long as it is clean. Do not need many bells and whistles. I just need a direction and don't have much time to plan. Haven't bought tickets but would like to leave in 2-3 weeks.

Thanks
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Old Jul 14th, 2009, 05:38 AM
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Durango is a great spot in SW Colorado. Mountains, fishing, hiking, a couple of lakes, train ride, off roading, spectacular scenery, Mesa Verde National Park's ancient Puebloan cliff dwellings, to name just a few things to do. A quaint downtown area with reasonable family restaurants and motels.

It is expensive to fly into Durango, but depending on where you are in TX, you might be able to drive here. Or fly Southwest to Albuquerque and then drive for 3 hours to get here.

While it is low 90's [cooler in the mountains] here, there is no humidity and it cools down every night to mid 50's.

Deb
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Old Jul 14th, 2009, 06:00 AM
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Durango good idea.

Another thought is the Frisco area. We like it because it's a central location and is fairly quiet. It's within minutes of both Keystone and Breckenridge. About 30 min from Vail. Lots of activity choices. We usually get a condo - more room and often cheaper than hotel.

Easy drive on I 70 from DEN.
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Old Jul 14th, 2009, 06:25 AM
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Actually I found some decent rates to Durango but are leaning to flying into Denver. How long of a drive from Denver?
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Old Jul 14th, 2009, 06:55 AM
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Durango from Denver is a little over 400 mi. Scenery can be great, but don't count on great time as most of the roads aren't freeways and there really isn't a "direct" route. I'd count on at least 7 hrs.
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Old Jul 14th, 2009, 07:14 AM
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dfr is correct, 7 good hours. ABQ is much closer.
Also - AA now flies from DFW to Santa Fe, that would be about same time as ABQ not sure what rates are like.
Deb
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Old Jul 14th, 2009, 07:47 AM
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Consider flying into Denver for a stay at Estes Park family YMCA near Rocky Mountain National Park.
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Old Jul 20th, 2009, 12:14 PM
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Another two or three weeks will put you in middle August and by then raft could be over or marginal at best -- low water flows. But some float trips out of Idaho Springs or along the Colorado in Glenwood Springs would still be doable. Glenwood Springs, three hours west on I=70, would be a good focus point. There are some inexpensive hotels/motels in that area and good hiking in Glenwood Canyon. And then split it with a few days in the Frisco area for a little change in activity.
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Old Jul 20th, 2009, 01:13 PM
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A lot of good input. I suggest you pick the cheapest airfares and then decide, whether it's Durango, Salida/Buena Vista, Glenwood Springs or Frisco. As fmpden mentioned, you could easily combine Glenwood Springs with Frisco or Frisco area with Buena Vista/Salida. If you like to bike, there is a great trail following the Colorado River from Glenwood Springs.
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Old Jul 24th, 2009, 12:18 PM
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Lots of great ideas -- I'm seconding many and adding a few more to the pot.

I'd put in a vote for Gunnison. Quaint and fits the bill for most of the things you are looking to do. But it is a few hours' drive from either Denver or CS.

Second: Buena Vista and Salida/Brown's Canyon are also beautiful spots for a ton of outdoor activities.

I also second the Colorado for a float through Glenwood Canyon. Just breathtaking and easy that late in the summer.

One other float trip to consider: the Roaring Fork outside Aspen/Snowmass. It is quieter than the Colorado, which although lovely runs along I-70. The RF runs through park area and you may see some wildlife along the way. I did this trip years ago with my family as a last weekend before grad school and I'll always remember getting to see a bear along the side of the river, getting his paws wet. A bit nervewracking as we went past, but so memorable.

If you would rather stay closer to an airport locale, and are considering a float trip near Idaho Springs, there is camping near Mount Evans as well as fishing and hiking and rafting along Clear Creek. Also, Guanella Pass outside Georgetown is a lovely area for camping.

There is a great book that you might be able to either order or check out from the library called Colorado Campgrounds: The 100 Best And All the Rest by Gil Folsom that has some great information. It was suggested to us and it has been so helpful as we plan our own family outings.
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