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Hot air balloon ride

Boca Raton, Florida
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Hot air balloon ride

My husband and I are planning a trip to Colorado for our 20th anniversary in late October/early November. We would like to take a hot air balloon ride while we are there. Any suggestions? We are concerned about the weather, too late for foliage and too early for snow? We do not ski but would like to go tubing. Anything open at that time?

Colorado
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for Colorado
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1. Re: Hot air balloon ride

Hi Colleen, welcome to the Colorado Forums! First like Florida Colorado is a big state. What area are you looking to visit? No tubing at that time of year. Too late for fall colors other than that the weather could be anything depending on where you are visiting. A bit more details would help us a lot.

Boca Raton, Florida
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2. Re: Hot air balloon ride

Sorry about not giving many details. We haven't made any plans as of yet because we are a bit overwhelmed by all the info online. We'll be flying in and out of Denver airport and renting a car. The only "must" on our list is a hot air balloon ride and thought I would start from there hoping for a recommendation of a good company.

Colorado
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3. Re: Hot air balloon ride

http://www.denver.org/events/detail?e=1305 denver.org has a wealth on information to get you started. Boulder and Estes Park would be lovely places to visit at that time of year

Edited: 29 August 2013, 16:20
Denver, Colorado
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4. Re: Hot air balloon ride

Hi Colleen! I'm been on a couple of rides with the company "Fair Winds Hot Air Balloon Flights" in Boulder, and have been impressed with them (they have reviews here on tripadvisor - check it out!). You are pretty close to the mountains, and go up high enough to have great views of the Front Range mountains (Longs Peak, etc.). Plus, it's a relatively short drive from Denver, and Boulder has some awesome things to see as well (and is on the way to Rocky Mountain National Park (a must-see while you're in Colorado!).

As for late October/ early November, you are a little late for the aspen fall foliage. As for snow, we may have a large snowstorm around then, or it may be perfectly dry. Colorado weather is a little weird. Come prepared for either. Rocky Mountain National Park would be a good place to visit this time of year, as it is beautiful even after the fall colors have faded. However, keep in mind that trail ridge road will likely be closed by then. It's average closure date is October 23rd, though it has been known to close as early as October 17th (2012) and as late as November 6th (2003).

Windsor, Colorado
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for Estes Park, Rocky Mountain National Park
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5. Re: Hot air balloon ride

Actually the last day Trail Ridge Road was open as a through road between Estes Park and Grand Lake in 2012 was October 11. The actual closing date of Trail Ridge Road is often earlier than the official closing date. The rangers wait to see if it will be possible to reopen the road before declaring it officially closed.

nps.gov/romo/parknews/pr_2012_trail_ridge_ro…

Trail Ridge Road will be open as far as Many Parks Curve weather permitting on the east side of RMNP and all other main roads in RMNP will be open. It is actually fun to walk on the closed portion of Trail Ridge Road if it is not too cold and windy.

The east side (Estes Park side) of RMNP is the drier side. The largest snowfalls usually occur in March and April. You can have snow by late October/early November but it will melt at lower elevations. That time of year is low season for Estes Park and you can get some great lodging deals on hotels, cabins, condos, vacation rentals and B&B's. Last year, places had buy 2 nights and get 1 free, $99 a night specials, restaurant certificates, etc. Some of these deals will not show up on websites until after mid-October.

http://estes-park.com/lodging-guide-estes

Year round activities in Estes Park and RMNP include golf, horseback riding, hiking, biking, fly fishing, swimming at the Aquatic Center and rock climbing. Snowshoeing may be an option at upper elevations. Late October and early November is a great time for wildlife viewing - elk, big horn sheep and deer plus others. People enjoy wine tasting at Snowy Peaks Winery and tours of the historic and ghostly Stanley Hotel. October 25 and 26, the Stanley Hotel hosts the Shining Ball and Murder Mystery Dinner. On Halloween night, the main street through downtown is closed and merchants decorate store fronts for trick or treaters. It is a family friendly street party. On weekends, restaurants often have live music.

I love going to RMNP in the off season. Especially during the week, it is possible to visit all the beautiful lakes and waterfalls and be the only one there.

Denver, Colorado
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6. Re: Hot air balloon ride

Yes, fv1989 is correct about the closing date of trail ridge road - it is often closed early than the "official" closing date. The dates I quoted are the "official" closing dates. You get the idea though :)

Boca Raton, Florida
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7. Re: Hot air balloon ride

Thank you for all of your comments. We booked the trip and will be in Colorado a bit later than expected, Nov 16-20. Maybe there's a better chance to see snow at that time.

8. Re: Hot air balloon ride

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Fraser, Colorado
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9. Re: Hot air balloon ride

Check out www.balloonridescolorado.com they are located on the West side of Rocky Mountain National Park. Grand County is in the heart of the Rockies & its spectacular views are breath-taking.

10. Re: Hot air balloon ride

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