OURAY HOT SPRINGS
Fishing • Hiking • Cycling • Horseback Riding
BLACK CANYON OF THE GUNNISON
Cedaredge is a quaint, friendly town just a few miles from Big Spruce Campground. In town, you can find restaurants, art galleries, antique stores, groceries, and plenty of fresh, local produce from surrounding farms and orchards. Cedaredge hosts the annual AppleFest in the fall with activities including a scarecrow contest, wine and beer garden, the Golden Gala, and an antique tractor show.
Also in Cedaredge, Pioneer Town is a 19th-century Western village. It has a blacksmith shop, jail, saloon, schoolhouse, and a frontier museum. Experience the American West at the turn of the century.
At 10,000', Grand Mesa is one of the largest flattop mountain in the world rising more than a mile above the valley floor and stretching over 40 miles of Colorado's landscape. The entire area is a focal point of back roads and trails leading into the wilderness. The Ute Indians called the Grand Mesa "Thunder Mountain" because of how the mesa towers over the valley 6,000' below.
Escape the summer heat and relax in Grand Mesa's cool mountain air. Hikers will want to trek along the Crag Crest National Recreation Trail, a 10-mile circle that is only open to foot traffic.
Discover over 300 lakes offering fantastic fishing. Rainbow, brook, and brown trout like to roam these waters. Some lakes have boat launches accessible via Highway 65; for the more adventurous anglers, visit one of the many lakes only accessible by 4WD vehicles/ATV, foot, or horseback.
Drive the Grand Mesa Scenic and Historic Byway and tour the changing aspen in the fall. Travel through Austin, Cedaredge, Collbran, Eckert, and Mesa to view various scenery changes; start in a desert canyon, and pass aspen foothills, lakes, alpine forests, lily ponds, and meadows bursting with wildflowers as you make your way to the top of the mesa. The byway provides many scenic overlooks to view each of these wonders.
Almost entirely within the Grand Mesa National Forest, Grand Mesa has abundant wildlife making this a popular area for fall hunting.
Big enough to be overwhelming, still intimate enough to feel the pulse of time, Black Canyon of the Gunnison exposes you to some of the steepest cliffs, oldest rock, and craggiest spires in North America. With two million years to work, the Gunnison River, along with the forces of weathering, has sculpted this vertical wilderness of rock, water, and sky.
There are wonderful natural hot springs in Ouray and nearby Ridgway. These include the Ouray Hot Springs Pool and the naturally landscaped pools at Orvis Hot Springs in Ridgway.
For more than half a century, the Ouray Hot Springs Pool has provided a relaxing, family- oriented environment in which to enjoy the soothing pleasures of hot mineral water. In addition to lap swimming lanes, the Pool offers three different soaking sections with temperatures ranging from 88 to 105 degrees. The crystal-clear water, free from the strong smell of sulfur typical of many hot springs, makes the Ouray Hot Springs Pool a popular, year-round spot for visitors around the world. Seven natural hot springs supply the pool with hot water, approximately 150 degrees. The Ouray Hot Springs Pool itself has not changed much since construction in the 1920's. The pool is an historic structure, listed on the National Historic Register.
COLORADO NATIONAL MONUMENT
Colorado National Monument preserves one of the grand landscapes of the American West. But this treasure is much more than a monument. Towering monoliths exist within a vast plateau and canyon panorama. You can experience sheer-walled, red rock canyons along the twists and turns of Rim Rock Drive, where you may spy bighorn sheep and soaring eagles.
Just a short away and you can find yourself rafting down the Gunnison River through the Gunnison Gorge. See inaraft.com for more information.
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