Dylan.Blog Writing and musings by Dylan Reed

Five Places to visit in Southern Colorado

Recently Sarah and I took a trip to Southern Colorado and tour a lot of the attractions in that part of the state. It was a really fun trip, aside from the mantis attack, so I figured I would give you the five things that we really enjoyed.

  1. Royal Gorge Bridge:What can you say about a bridge that is 1053 feet above a river, was built on a bet and cost only $350,000 to build. It was pretty neat. Other then the fears of the bridge collapsing on our way across and me neglecting to tell Sarah that they allow cars on the bridge. We took some pictures for scale as well as seeing long horned cattle on the other side. I think that this is one of the attractions that everyone should do when they are in Colorado, it is so neat to be on a suspension bridge in the middle of the mountains. The story of the Bridge is that two Texans, of course, made a bet that one of them couldn’t build a bridge across the gorge. So of course they where able to and so in Colorado we have a bridge that you can take to get no where.
  1. Cave of the Winds: We did this on the last day of our vacation and I think that it might have been my favorite part of the trip. The night before we had avoided going to the hotel we booked, it looked like a crack den, and drove all night to get to a hotel with a vacancy. So after a quick breakfast, included in the stay, we where off to the cave of the winds. Once we had arrived and purchased our tickets it was time to hell about Manitou Springs waiting for out tour to start.We arrived back at the cave about 30 minutes before our tour and had to wait about 25 for the guide to show up. We had opted to do the lantern tour, which is a tour into the less traveled parts of the cave carrying kerosene “candles” in buckets. As we traveled into the caves out guide told us ghost stories and it was a really fun time. We enjoyed learning the history of the cave and the area.
  1. Royal Gorge Bridge: This was the first thing we did after leaving on Friday. We drove up and made it to the Depot about one hour prior to our train leaving. Since Sarah had her clot we have been very conscience of sitting for to long so we where off to take a walk and take pictures. After an hour and 30 some pictures later we went a boarded the train. Our only disappointment with this train ride was that since we did the lunch train we where sat with another couple. Man they where annoying. Luckily after lunch Sarah and I went and looked out on the open air car and where able to avoid them for a good part of the ride. The beautiful trip up was interesting because you can see the old Canon City water pipe, which was made of wood and laid by convicts, as well as passing under the bridge. On the way back they where nice enough to pause under the bridge for 20 minutes so everyone can get twenty or so under bridge shots.
  1. Royal Gorge Incline Railroad: This railroad is actually an elevator that goes down the side of the mountain. It is really pretty cool and a much better way to get up or down a mountain then walking. The ride down is pretty exciting because you are standing in a car looking across at the other side of the gorge. When you arrive at the bottom you are right beside the Arkansas river and there is a nice area to take pictures of the water way. The ride up is interesting because you are traveling backwards and the car coming down sneaks up on you.
  1. Great Sand Dunes: Are and will always be GREAT!! I had been to the Dunes once before about eight years ago and had forgotten how big they are. I told Sarah that we should have no problem reaching the top. Shouldn’t take us more then an hour I said. I was so wrong. One thing to remember, that we forgot, is to bring sno-disc type sleds or a snowboard. With these you can surf or slide the dunes, we watched a lot of people do this and it looked like fun. Sarah and I did a pretty good job hiking up the dunes and found ourselves about a third of the way to the top. What we found funny is that we had this group that followed us most of the way to the top. Everytime we would stop they would catch up and stand in front of us until we moved, this happened three or four times until Sarah pushed them off the dunes we finally stopped moving. Of all of the wonderful natural attractions that Colorado has the Great Sand Dunes has to be pretty far up there on the list. They are so cool because they are unexpected. They are a wonderful little desert in the middle of the mountains. Awesome.

So next time you find yourself thinking “Man, I have to go to Southern Colorado, that place is so lame”. Remember this list and check all of these places out.