Add Altitude and Attitude to This Year’s Vacation
Colorado’s Western Slope is known worldwide as an astonishing snowsport paradise. But in summer, those same high-altitude landscapes become gorgeous playgrounds for hiking, cycling, camping, fishing, boating, dining, shopping and cultural enrichment.
Golf is a given. From Steamboat Springs to Grand Junction to Aspen to Durango, the courses are a bejeweled necklace of routings on Mother Nature-painted canvases that are among the most heavenly on earth.
Here, the sky is the limit for outdoor adventure. Since most bucket lists are half full, we’re offering five must-dos that will tempt, delight and forever be remembered:
1. 26th ANNUAL ROCKY MOUNTAIN MUSTANG ROUNDUP: Steamboat Springs is most definitely not a one-trick pony. Besides skiing, the town is celebrated for its hip cowboy undercurrent, art and culture, live entertainment and family recreation. One must-see is the Mustang Roundup, which sounds like a wild and wooly rodeo but is actually a signature car show of 450 Ford Mustangs displayed up and down Lincoln Avenue. The show and planned autocross are free and open to the public. Jun. 12-15, 2014. www.steamboat-chamber.com
2. TASTE OF CRESTED BUTTE: Authentic, open and free of crowds, Crested Butte is a quaint 1880s mining town and Registered National Historic District. It’s also the “official wildflower capital” of Colorado. Culinary aficionados should mark their calendars for the Taste of Crested Butte, an on-mountain fest that features local restaurants and some of the state’s best breweries and distillers. Event includes a progressive dinner ($90/person), underscored by gorgeous mountain views and delicious cocktails. June 14-21, 2014. www.tasteofcb.com
3. 7TH ANNUAL TELLURIDE YOGA FESTIVAL: Wedged into a glacier-carved valley at the base of the San Juan Mountains, Telluride is regarded as the festival capital of America with one premier event after the other all summer long. The Telluride Yoga Festival will feature more than 30 professionals, including Noah Maze, Scott Blossom, Peter Sterios, Cat McCarthy and Beryl Bender Birch. $395 for a three-day pass, or $495 for the 3-day plus the Thursday all-day intensive. July 10-13, 2014 www.visittelluride.com
4. 28TH ANNUAL MUSIC IN THE MOUNTAINS: Durango offers an endless variety of warm-weather activities and world-class experiences, including Mesa Verde National Park, Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad, mountain biking, river rafting and more. For something truly inspirational, check out Music in the Mountains, an exceptional summer music festival with premium-caliber musicians that entertain and delight audiences with classical concerts and youth educational programs. July 13-Aug. 3, 2014. www.musicinthemountains.com
5. 47th ANNUAL PALISADE PEACH FESTIVAL: Sited at the foothills of awe-inspiring Colorado National Monument, Grand Junction is the state’s unabashed wine country capital, plus it offers exhilarating outdoor adventures like hiking, camping and Colorado River whitewater rafting. For an iconic adventure, attend the Palisade Peach Festival, featuring four days of fruit-based celebrations that include pies, jams, ice cream, wine, pancakes, parades, car shows, fun runs and more. Aug. 14-17, 2014. www.palisadepeachfest.com
Durango resident Chris Duthie is a contributor to Colorado AvidGolfer, the state’s leading resource for golf and the lifestyle that surrounds it. It publishes eight issues annually and proudly delivers daily content via www.coloradoavidgolfer.com.