Colorado in Sept

May 26th, 2010, 08:49 PM
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Colorado in Sept

We are thinking of a flight to Denver and then day trips to see Aspen, Vail, Breckenridge, Steamboat, Telluride, etc. We are in our mid 70's and while we want to see a lot, we don't want to wear outselves out driving long distances.
Which of these destinations would be compatible with a day trip from Denver, or is it possible to do a circle without long days of driving?
Not crazy about driving along roads with huge drop offs either!!
Appreciate any suggestions.
dotsy is offline  
May 27th, 2010, 03:28 AM
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I would do a small tour . Denver-Colorado springs-Aspen back to Denver via route 70. Possible in 3 days but preferable in more.
tovarich is offline  
May 27th, 2010, 03:48 AM
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You could do a drive up from Denver to Rocky Mountain National Park. Go through the Park and back down to I70 to go on to Vail. Then go on to Aspen and back to Denver, perhaps doing a small detour on the way back through Leadville. That could be done in 3 days if you wanted.
For a strict day trip from Denver you could do the Park. Or you could do Vail. Or you could do Colorado Springs--Garden of the Gods outside it.
The roads are wide and good.
Gretchen is offline  
May 27th, 2010, 04:53 AM
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I fear that you have setup a difficult though not impossible scenario. Of the towns you mentioned, only Breckenridge and Vail could be done as day trips from Denver.

Here is a possible itinerary which would get you to all of them and Rocky Mt National Park--
1. Denver to Estes Park and Rocky Mountain National Park-70 miles (11/2 hours to Estes)- spend a couple of days in the park
2. then drive through the Park to Grand Lake and spend a night there
3. Grand Lake to Steamboat Springs-100 miles- 3 hours
(alternative--if you don't want to go to the RMNP-drive from Denver to Steamboat Springs--it is 160 miles and would take about 3 1/2 hours)

4. Steamboat Springs to Vail--100 miles 2 1/2 hours (you could also visit Breckenridge while at Vail since it is less than 1 hour from Vail)
5. Vail to Glenwood Springs-60 miles 1 hour
(alternative Vail to Aspen--about 100 miles--2-21/2 hours)
6. Glenwood Springs to Aspen-40 miles 1 hour- (Aspen can also be done as a day trip from Glenwood Springs)

Now we come to Telluride--which is 200 miles and 5 hours from Aspen. Telluride is also 7 hours from Denver--if you are flying out of the Denver airport. Another option would be to fly out of the Durango airport (which would probably be more expensive).
Or you could skip Telluride (though it is one of the most beautifully situated towns I have ever seen)and return to Denver via I-70 or if you have a little more time--return through Leadville to Buena Vista to Denver on highway 285.

It is certainly possible to visit all of these towns if you have 10 to 2 weeks. September is usually a beautiful time in Colorado with the aspen turning--though there can be a little snow at the higher elevations.
martym is offline  
May 27th, 2010, 05:04 AM
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You can also fly into Albuquerque and drive 3 hours to the SW Corner of Colorado. Southwest offers lots of flights into ABQ and if it is at your airport, it's worth looking into :

Once in that corner of the state, you can easily see Durango, Mesa Verde National Park [a must see], Telluride, Silverton, Ouray by driving what is known as the Million Dollar Highway.

There is huge festival in Telluride 9/17- 9/20 with over 10,000 people so avoid it at that time.

I have lots of threads here on places to stay, eat in that area.
For starters:
DebitNM is offline  
May 27th, 2010, 12:37 PM
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Last Sept DH and I flew into Denver. Drove to Aspen, stayed at the Limelight for two days, and then drove to Vail, stayed at the Hotel Tivoli (one of my favorite hotels ever). We saw a good many of the small towns (Breckinridge and Leadville were our favorites) did a few hikes and had incredible weather for our day visit to Maroon Bells. The rates we got at the hotels were excellent. Sept is a great time to see Colorado. Have a wonderful visit.
cmcfong is offline  
May 27th, 2010, 07:39 PM
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Thank you all for your quick responses and suggestions. This gives us a good idea of time and miles between towns. Know we can't see it all but with this info we can choose what works best for us.
Happy Memorial Day weekend to you all.
dotsy is offline  
May 28th, 2010, 03:17 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 15,882
I think the important thing would be not to do day trips. you won't have any trouble finding places to stay in the mountains each day so a loop trip would be nice. It's such a beautiful state. You'll love that time of year also.
Gretchen is offline  
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