Fodor's Expert Review Flat Tops Trail Scenic Byway
This gravel road east of Meeker stretches 82 miles through ranching communities to Yampa, crossing an area shaped by molten lava flows and glaciers that gouged tiny jewel-like lakes in the folds of the mountains. The drive is beautiful but desolate, so don't forget to fill up your gas tank in Meeker, Buford, or Yampa before departing. Also, the road can get muddy and dangerously slick when it rains. In good weather, take the extra time to explore some of the 235,000 acres available for outdoor activities, including the numerous trails that spin off right along the route. There are lakes to fish and plenty of picnic stops, and keep your eyes peeled for wildlife. The road affords views of Rattlesnake Butte, winds through the meadows and alpine lushness of Routt National Forest, opens up to the Flat Tops themselves with a magnificent view from Dunckley Pass Overlook, and then drops into White River National Forest (watch for elk).