Our Top 7 Colorado Summer Weekend Getaways


Our biggest ‘travel goal’ for the summer was to, well, not travel. As much as we love living in Colorado, we don’t intend to stay here forever so we wanted to spend the summer enjoying the Rocky Mountains right here in our own backyard. That combined with our exciting new adventure in the works (big announcement coming in the new few weeks!) that is consuming all of our savings, our points and miles and our time, a “staycation” strategy was the perfect fit for our summer. Here were our seven favorite getaways, in no particular order.

Aspen/Snowmass
Distance from Denver:
3.5 hours
Purpose: Anniversary Celebration           
Lodging:
Viceroy Snowmass (We won two free nights in a contest at Alpine Bank) and Sky Hotel (free Kimpton award night)
Activities: Skydiving, Hiking, biking, wine and beer tastings, and lounging by the pool
Overall Thoughts: Loved, loved, loved Aspen! Super impressed by both hotels and overall a very relaxing weekend. Easily the best part of the trip was our skydiving experience, which wasn’t in Aspen but in Canon City. We also stopped in Salida on our way and I thought that town was just adorable too.

IMG_2564

The Maroon Bells are the most photographed mountains in North America, for good reason!

Steamboat Springs
Distance from Denver: 3.5 hours
Purpose: Tegtmeier Family Vacation
Lodging: VRBO Rental House
Activities: Tubing the Yampa River, hiking (and seeing a bear!), Strawberry Park Hot Springs, golf, cardboard boat races, themed dinners, lounging in the hammock and around the fire pit
Overall Thoughts: Getting to spend almost a week with family was one of the highlights of our summer since we never seem to see them enough. Steamboat Springs was beautiful and there were plenty of good options for family-friendly things to do and places to eat.

Beaver Creek
Distance from Denver:
2 hours
Purpose:
Plush Family Reunion
Lodging: Sheraton Mountain Vista Villas (free night from Hotels.com)
Activities:
Hiking, stand up paddle boarding, beer tasting, picnic in the park and most of our crew went white water rafting and ATV riding
Overall Thoughts:
Always a good time to be reunited with the Plush family! The Sheraton was great because each family had their own villa with a kitchen, separate bedroom, pull out couch, washer/dryer, etc. There’s also a Comfort Inn directly across the street as a slightly more affordable option.11873672_1048305028520822_5441266929667354544_n

Kite Lake and Surrounding 14ers
Distance from Denver:
2 hours (outside of Fairplay, CO)
Purpose:
A surprise proposal! My sister Jenna and Justin are engaged!
Lodging: Camped at Kite Lake ($12 per site)
Activities:
Summited four 14ers: Mt. Democrat, Mt. Cameron, Mt. Lincoln and Mt. Bross
Overall Thoughts:
A relatively easy quadruple 14er hike until the way down on Bross, which got super steep. The campground itself only has five campgrounds but there ended up being hundreds of people camping near us thanks to big event the following day. We’re still enjoying free Which Wich sandwiches from this hike. And of course, the highlight was Justin getting down on one knee on the summit of the final mountain and she said YES!11828815_10155875927215285_8326785009544756961_n

Vail
Distance from Denver:
2 hours 
Purpose:
Backpacking trip with Kait and Tim, our friends in town from Baltimore
Lodging: Camped at Gore Creek Lake (free, but you have to earn it by carrying all your gear in)
Activities:
Backpacked the Gore Creek Trail, about a 12-mile roundtrip with +3,192’ total elevation gain
Overall Thoughts:
This was a pretty strenuous trail but well worth the views. Thankful for opportunity to spend two days with Kait and Tim because not only are they among our favorite people ever, but have way more backpacking experience than us so we learned a lot.11811476_10102039005144247_7559330049978209043_n

Mt. Bierstadt
Distance from Denver:
1.5 hours
Purpose:
4th of July Camping and my bestie Kacey Faith’s first 14er
Lodging: Camped at the Guanella Pass Campground. $26 if book online, but reservations are highly recommended
Activities:
Hiked St. Mary’s Glacier and summited Mt. Bierstadt. You can read more about our experience in this post.
Overall Thoughts:
We lucked out with perfect weather, had a great hike and a great time camping with friends at this pretty, peaceful site. Would highly recommend to anyone looking to do a 14er in the Front Range.

Mt. Bierstadt

Manitou Springs
Distance from Denver:
1.5 hours (Colorado Springs area)
Purpose:
Memorial Day Weekend
Lodging: Magnuson Hotel (Only $16.57 thanks to the Orbitz Black Friday promotion)
Activities:
Hiking, Manitou Incline, the world’s worst murder mystery dinner theatre show, Territory Days, wine and beer tastings
Overall Thoughts:
The murder mystery was a bust and many of the trails in the area were still closed due to all the flooding we had in late spring, but we still managed to have a nice stay, especially for the price tag.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published.