What to do and see after the Festival??!

Howdy Festivarians,
Well the TBF is just part of a larger Colorado vacation for us. We have 6 days between the end of the festival and when we need to be in Steamboat. My question is what should a family go do and see during those five days. Please bear in mind that we have a 2 and 5 year old so hiking some 14er’s is probably not feasible :wink: Just trying to get some ideas of where we should go where the whole family will have a good time. Thanks and Peace. Big Al

Get in touch with your inner native by visiting Mesa Verde for a day or 4.
Spend some time in Moab and Arches NM, be sure to pack a copy of Desert Solitaire by Edward Abbey in your back pocket and go out hiking in the very early mornings.
Take a raft trip on the Green, Gunnison, or Colorado rivers.
Fly fishing in the alpine.
Ride the Durango Silverton Narrow gauge railroad.

Should I stop now?

Hi, :wave

First of all, get to Telluride earlier than Wednesday, if at all possible. You won’t regret a couple of days to acclimate and do things in and around town before the music starts.

Are you looking to hotel/motel or camp after Telluride?

Like Jerry said, Mesa Verde Cliff Dwellings and the Durango/Silverton railroad are good things based out of hotel/motel digs in Durango.

Durango’s a good summer tourist town. The cliff dwellings won’t hold the kids’ attention for long, but are worth a quick trip. A one way (with to or from via bus) train trip will be plenty (the kids will sleep half the time due to train’s rocking motion anyway.)

Be aware summer is high season in the San Juans, nice places to stay fill up quickly and can be pricey.

Less hotel/motel availability, but good camping options exist in and around Silverton and Ouray. I highly recommend the Ouray Hot Springs. If your kids like water, they will love this place. Email me (it’s in my profile) or send me a Personal Message if you want some campground recommendations in this area, actually- email me anyway- we may be able to work out something Town Park-wise.

In and around Gunnison is another place to set up a base and have outdoor type stuff in all directions.

Way on up, closer to Steamboat, is Rocky Mountain National Park. We stayed near Grand Lake years ago, but folks more local can give you better info.

Have fun,

Ron (other Ron in Albuquerque)

I used to live in the Grand Junction area, I suggest stopping at Orvis Hot Springs on the way home (it is clothing optional though) they have an indoor pool that you have to wear your suit. (well so I heard) If the clothing optional is too much for you there is the Ouray Hot Springs closer into Ouray. If you have a good four wheel drive vehicle and some guts you can take the Imogene pass over from Telluride to Ouray. It usually opens the weekend of TBF. Then on the way through GJ, Stop at the Colorado National Monument, an easy 45 minute drive over the top and down into Fruita, CO. Beautiful views. In Fruita there is the Dinasour Museum and farther out on Hwy 70 heading to Utah there is Rabbit Valley where they dig for dinasour bones. Pretty cool and and easy loop hike. Then I would definetly head over to Arches. It is a great place with easy hikes and well worth the trip. I took my daughter when she was 12 and she seemed to enjoy it. There is tons of campgrounds in Moab and a hostel on the south side of town, that has little cabins and they used to have a TeePee. After that you could head back to Steamboat via Craig. There’s nothing too exciting up that direction that I can think of.

Living in Colorado these are my 3 suggestions:
Trip #1:

  1. Mesa Verde, spend the night in the campground there. From Telluride take Lizard head pass, Hwy 145, to Cortez and the W on Hwy 160 to Park; 2) West on Hwy 160 through Durango, past Pagosa Springs (stop for a quick swim in the heated spill off in the river, just off highway, ask, I cannot remember the name of the road there but it is free and large enough for your family (it is the road to the hot Springs and is on the SouthEast side of the bridge in the river); over Wolf Creek Pass, past Alamosa (stop for gas and groceries if needed) to Hwy 150 North to the Sand Dunes National Monument. This is a beautiful area and camp ground. Hike the dunes and take in the ranger talk at night in the campground, get there early to get a camping spot in the park, otherwise there is camping available close by; 3) Close by is an alligator farm, hit that and you will have the kids in Awe, it is located on a hot spring; 4) North to Mt Princeton Hot Springs by Salida, spend the night there, rooms available on site.or head North on Hwy 24 to Leadville and spend the Night there…… 5) North on Hwy 285 to Leadville, tour the museums and the highest incorpororated city in the U.S (and birthplace of my son). The scenery here is outstanding, Leadville is a renewed mining town with tons of history. From Leadville travel North on Hwy 24 to I- 70. Go West on I-70 to Hwy 131 North to Steamboat Springs

Trip #2:
1)go to Mesa Verde and spend the night in the camp ground (directions in post #1)
2) Travel to Durango and take the Durango Silverton Train ride through the wilderness, awesome ride and great with kids! If you are adventerous you can be dropped off mid way and camp and then the train will pick you up the next day- or whenever and take you back to Durango. From Durango take the “Million Dollar Highway”, Hwy 550 North to Ouray, spend the night here.
3) North on Hwy 550 to Montrose, visit Telluride Tom on your way to the Black Canyon of the Gunnison. Turn East onto Hwy 50 in Montrose. Spend the night at Curecanti National Recreation Area (Blue Mesa Resevouir).
4) Back to Hwy 50, West to Montrose and North on Hwy 550 to Delta. East on Hwy 92 out of Delta and North on Hwy 133 over breathtaking McClure Pass into Glenwood Springs. Spend the night here with the kids at the Hot Springs Hotel, the pool is great!
5) I70 East to Hwy 131 North to Steamboat

1)go to Mesa Verde and spend the night in the camp ground (directions in post #1)
2) Travel East on Hwy 160 to South Fork (stop on Pagosa at the hot springs mentioned in Trip #1 for a break). North on Hwy 149 our of South Fork to Creede. From here go to Wheeler Geological area, I have never been but it is on “my list”. Spend the night camping in National forest or at a campground.
3) North to Lake City, have breakfast or lunch in this quaint town. North to I-50 East. To Gunnison. North on Hwy 135 to Crested Butte, a beautiful town!. Spend the night here or camp in the forest. Out of Crested Butte travel West over Kebler Pass, there are a lot of places to camp here, check out Lost Lake near the top of the pass- awesome!.
4) Continue West over Kebler Pass to Hwy 133 and Turn Right, North towards Glenwood Springs. You can choose to stay at Glenwood Springs or to go to Aspen for the night. If you choose Aspen you will find that the rooms are cheaper in Snowmass at this time of year. In Aspen take the bus into Maroon Bells Wilderness Area and hike for as long as you like, or not. Return on the bus to your car and then head on up to Steamboat Springs via Hwy 82 to I-70 East to Hwy 131.
Have a safe trip!

I forgot to mention the DINOSAUR National Monument, this would be a great trip #4 choice. On your way to the DNM stop and camp at the CO National Monument and raft the Green River as already mentioned… pick up fresh fruit along the way at the roadside stands.
what to do? What to do?
pick up a map by GTR Mapping (they have a website) called: Recreational Map of Colorado,
I have several copies, it is a great map!
Happy trails!

All you have to do is click on the “delete” icon at the top of your duplicate post.

You can also click on the “modify” icon to edit your posts instead of opening a new reply if you want to change or add something. :flower

geesh - :wave Leave it to Theresa … Take a lifetime of exploring and condense it into a single road trip :wink:

Don’t miss the campground in the aspen trees near the top of Kenosha pass, eat some chili beans and rice in honor of my mother when you camp there…


Hi Tom;
Can’t wait to see you! Thanks for the info., I tried it and it worked.
I think that I was just tired from all of that writing :wink:
See you soon!

All you have to do is click on the “delete” icon at the top of your duplicate post.

You can also click on the “modify” icon to edit your posts instead of opening a new reply if you want to change or add something. :flower