We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Thoughts, Prayers and plan B

San Dimas...
Level Contributor
261 posts
10 reviews
Save Topic
Thoughts, Prayers and plan B

First of all, as many others have expressed, my thoughts and prayers are with everyone that in any way has been impacted by this situation. It is so sad to see loss of life, property and landscape. I pray these rains stop and that the healing and recovery process will be as easy as possible.

My husband and I are flying in this Friday. Sept. 20. Through advice of the TA family we had planned to arrive at DIA at 9:30 am and drive up the peak to peak arriving for 3 nights in Estes Park. We planned to return to Denver Monday for the Broncos game that night departing for home Tues. Our flight snd game tickets cannot be changed.

I need help with a plan B. I would prefer if possible to still go elsewhere for the 3 days and not just stay in Denver. I just don't know where??

I would greatly appreciate any suggestions. We were hoping to see and experience more of nature then the big city. If that is not possible then Denver suggestions are also appreciated.

Trip advisor is a community of people that ties us all together and even though we have never met, my heart goes out to all of you during this time.

Santa Fe, New Mexico
Destination Expert
for Santa Fe, Mesa Verde National Park, Boulder, New Mexico
Level Contributor
21,097 posts
53 reviews
Save Reply
1. Re: Thoughts, Prayers and plan B

I would look at Summit County - Frisco, Dillon, Silverthorne, Breckenridge, Vail, Aspen, Gunnison/Crested Butte or Salida/Buena Vista. All beautiful places to visit. Black Canyon of the Gunnison Nat Park, Great Sand Dunes Nat Park both worth visiting. As much as the town of Estes Park needs tourist dollars, but will take time to get access to the town for visitors. They are working now to evacuated and locate people.

Nederland, Colorado
Level Contributor
10,456 posts
13 reviews
Save Reply
2. Re: Thoughts, Prayers and plan B

Thank you for your kind thoughts, Mommyhern. The floods have been devastating for so many. It is surreal to watch the coverage on tv.

It is good that your plans are flexible. I'd suggest spending a few days in Breckenridge or Frisco. The leaves should be starting to turn and it's lovely there in the fall. There is plenty to keep you busy for a few days in Summit County. Check out the Breckenridge forum and this site: http://www.gobreck.com/

Frisco is a nice little town on the way to Breckenrige: http://www.townoffrisco.com/

San Dimas...
Level Contributor
261 posts
10 reviews
Save Reply
3. Re: Thoughts, Prayers and plan B

Thank you for your previous suggestions. We cancelled our reservations in Estes Park and booked 2 nights in Breckenridge and added another in Denver, making that 2 nights there.

First of all, do you have suggestions on a pretty drive to get to Breckenridge? We arrive at 9:30 a.m. so we have a full day to plan. Next, any suggestions on favorite things to do and see. We love the outdoors and weather permitting, would love walks, hikes, bike trails and drives to see beautiful scenery and possibly wildlife? Anything special to the area that is not to miss?? Favorite restaurants?? Also, things to see and do in Denver. We are staying at the Marriott Springhill Suites downtown to be close for the Broncos game Monday night. We depart on Tuesday.

I am such a planner and this experience of changing plans at the last minute is teaching me about going with the flow. I am up for it as long as we have some ideas from the wonderful TA community.

Thank you in advance for your time and input. We will hopefully be able to return for another fall season to Estes and RMNP and will continue to pray for the recovery process.

Windsor, Colorado
Destination Expert
for Estes Park, Rocky Mountain National Park
Level Contributor
10,179 posts
129 reviews
Save Reply
4. Re: Thoughts, Prayers and plan B

Breckenridge

Main Street Frisco is also charming and worth a stroll.

Hiking

summitcountyexplorer.com/summithikingtrails.…

Biking Breckenridge to Frisco

summitbiking.org/area_rides/breckfrisco.html

Scenic Drives from Breckenridge:

Top of the Rockies/Collegiate Peaks Scenic Byway loop (extend this to Nathrop and take a soak at Mount Princeton Hot Springs)

http://mapq.st/160EHEY

Mount Evans Scenic Byway/Loveland Pass loop (Mount Evans byway is open to Summit Lake at 12,800 ft. depending on weather - check www.cotrip.org

Nice hike along the byway

funcoloradohikes.com/chief_mountain.html

http://mapq.st/1657rWk

Guanella Pass Scenic Byway Loop (several of last miles are dirt)

Nice hike along the byway

funcoloradohikes.com/silver_dollar_lake.html

http://goo.gl/maps/k2Muy

You might enjoy the Georgetown Loop Railroad and Lebanon Silver Mine Tour

Fruita, Colorado
Destination Expert
for Fruita, Grand Junction
Level Contributor
6,410 posts
226 reviews
Save Reply
5. Re: Thoughts, Prayers and plan B

You might also enjoy the wildlife sanctuary in Keenesburg. denverpost.com/breakingnews/ci_24106530/lion…

tripadvisor.com/Attraction_Review-g33499-d17…

The Guanella Pass road may not be the best in a rental car as that last stretch is very washboardy. Your contract forbids off pavement driving, in most cases, and if you have any problems off pavement you will find both your roadside assistance from the rental company and your credit card assistance voided because you voided the rental contract. It gets really expensive to get towed out or have any help up there. Lots of other great drives if the colors are turning.

San Dimas...
Level Contributor
261 posts
10 reviews
Save Reply
6. Re: Thoughts, Prayers and plan B

Thank you fv and SusieLou. Great information! I will look up all the links.

I saw the links for scenice drives from Breckenridge. What is your suggestion on the drive from DIA to Breckenridge? Would you drive straight there via the 70 or do you suggest another route taking in more scenery?

I have already checked out the bike trip and defintely plan to do that.

Thanks again!

Colorado
Destination Expert
for Colorado
Level Contributor
12,836 posts
60 reviews
Save Reply
7. Re: Thoughts, Prayers and plan B

If you want a scenic route you can take the "back " way into Breckenridge via 285 I think it is a very pretty drive

maybe with a stop at the Depot in Como http://comodepot.com/

Edited: 17 September 2013, 00:37
Windsor, Colorado
Destination Expert
for Estes Park, Rocky Mountain National Park
Level Contributor
10,179 posts
129 reviews
Save Reply
8. Re: Thoughts, Prayers and plan B

Only about the last 4 miles of Guanella Pass Road as you approach Grant is dirt. It is paved to just past the summit, followed by about 4 miles of deteriorated asphalt with potholes. SusieLou is correct. The dirt section is often washboard and against rental car contract provisions regarding dirt roads. The Silver Dollar Lake hike is off the nice paved section of the road.

For your leisurely drive from DIA to Breckenridge, there are a couple of options different from the scenic drives I gave you above. I checked www.cotrip.org and currently there are no restrictions on this route that I saw.

http://goo.gl/maps/0Xevi

At Cripple Creek, if you have any interest in a gold mine tour, the Mollie Kathleen Mine is great if you do not have claustrophobia. The Cripple Creek Heritage Center across the street is a first rate museum. Florissant Fossil Beds National Monument would be a good place for a walk.

http://www.nps.gov/flfo/index.htm

Mueller State Park is really pretty.

…state.co.us/parks/…MuellerHome.aspx

I will give you the second option later. I have to go.

San Dimas...
Level Contributor
261 posts
10 reviews
Save Reply
9. Re: Thoughts, Prayers and plan B

Hello again. What great suggestions you have given us! In looking through different drive possibilities, I saw the scenic drive up Mount Evans. I read TA reviews and it seems to be a winner! I was thinking we could possibly do that on our arrival from DIA and do one of the other scenic drives on our return to Denver.

I am wondering if because of the altitude it would be better to save that for our return drive? Would it make a difference or would we be affected by doing the drive on our arrival?

Thanks in advance!

Windsor, Colorado
Destination Expert
for Estes Park, Rocky Mountain National Park
Level Contributor
10,179 posts
129 reviews
Save Reply
10. Re: Thoughts, Prayers and plan B

I would be hesitant to do the drive up Mount Evans upon arrival. Eventhough it is not open to the 14,000 ft. summit, 12,800 ft. is still very high and you will feel the effects of the altitude. You will want to get out and walk around at Summit Lake and at the Mount Goliath Natural area for the thousand year old bristlecone pine forest. There are great overlooks along the Squaw Pass Road section of the byway at the Eagle's Aerie and Juniper Pass (very short trail to your right) picnic areas. I would save it either for the return trip from Breck to Denver or as an easy day trip from Denver.

Do be aware of altitude sickness and take proper precautions. Even going from DIA to Breck for the first night can be a little uncomfortable for some people. See this recent thread about that.

tripadvisor.com/ShowTopic-g33327-i838-k61655…