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Colorado National Monument

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WI
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for Wisconsin, Colorado Springs
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Colorado National Monument

We're driving through Grand Junction on the way to Glenwood Springs and we do have plans for Glenwood but would consider a stop here to make this drive (Rim Rock Drive/Colorado National Monument). I believe it said it's 23 miles, does it begin right out of Grand Junction or is it out of the way? Is it an easy drive and about how long (with some quick in/out picture stops) might it take round trip, assuming we're doubling it back then driving to Glenwood Springs. Any further info. would be helpful. Also is it worth the drive? I haven't seen it mentioned on here that I've noticed (on posts) but we're interested in good scenery. Thanks.

Edited: 13 May 2010, 20:28
Hamilton, Canada
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11. Re: Colorado National Monument

Hey reddirtdawg that picture of the longhorn sheep has to be one of the most amazingly beautiful pictures I have ever seen. It almost is to good to be real. We'll be going thru CNM in Aug., are there a lot of Bighorn Sheep in CNM? Do they hang around any particular part of the Monument. I would like to see some butte's or rock formations that you see in Arches or Monument Valley. Are they visible from Rimrock Road or do we have to hike from the main road?

Thanks Bernie H

Edinburgh, United...
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12. Re: Colorado National Monument

Glad I looked in today, thanks for the info on the bikes Susilou, we had intended making the drive on the 13th.

One more question does this mean accommodation in the area will be scarce on the run up to this event?

Bertha

Grand Junction...
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13. Re: Colorado National Monument

Thanks everyone for the comments on my photos. I would hope they inspire folks to visit the CNM.

Bernie ~ I took that shot of the Big Horns on out annual Christmas day hike. This particular group of Big Horns hang near the top of Serpent't Trail. They are by the road a lot. If you go in the east entrance (Grand Junction) you will go by the parking lot of serpents trail.....then as you drive up to the top..via the switch backs you will reach the top of where Serpents trail comes out (there is also a small parking area there on one of the switchbacks) then you will go through I believe two very small tunnels....I can remember for sure if there are two on the Junction side or if there are two tunnels on the Fruita side. In any case....when you come out of the last little tunnel and are just about on top....keep your eyes peeled and you might see them. My wife and I see them almost every time we go up there....but we have been told by friends who take that road twice a day (everyday going to work) for past 7 years...that they have NEVER seen them. So I think they are just not looking .....I mean the Big Horns don't stand in the middle of the road....you have to look about 20 to 30 feet off the road on both sides. When you get to "Cold Shivers" overlook.....you are now past where they will be.

There are a few other herds on the CNM ....one on the Monument Trail...but you do have to hike some of that to get to them. These by Serpents trail you can see by your car. We have pulled over at times and had cars just pass us not asking what we are seeing...so these people miss them...I think that is what happens to the folks that drive it everyday....they just don't look close enough.

Here is a link....I think it is for Serpents Trail....like I said....you DON'T have to do that hike to see these Big Horns...but at the bottom of the page is a short, though not all that good, video of the CNM you might want to take a look at. The place in the video were they are that is called Bookcliff Point....that is where my third shot was taken from. This one of the best views of the red rock formations. You take the campground road near the Visitors center and drive back to the little pavilion to reach this point....you can walk out to the end and get this shot.

http://hubpages.com/hub/Hiking-Serpents-Trail

Thought it is nothing like Monument Valley...I am sure you will enjoy the easy drive through the CNM with many points to pull over and look at different views of formations. We do have the most of amount of arches ( outside of Arches NP) in the country near the CNM..called "Rattlesnake Canyon"...but I am afraid it would not be for someone just passing through...as they are time consuming to get to these.

www.bogley.com/forum/showthread.php…

Hope this gives you a little more detailed info

Fruita, Colorado
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14. Re: Colorado National Monument

In response to your question about lodging - that might be a problem. Part of the Ride the Rockies program is that participants could be part of a lottery to get reservations at motels, hotels and B&Bs - otherwise they tent camp at local schools. Last word is that the lottery had been filled and had a wait list. That may be due to the smaller towns they ride through not having many rooms for rent. Our area has quite a few rooms - if you haven't already booked a room please do so, to wait until you arrive may be too late. About the bighorn sheep, they do blend into the scenery quite well. My son and I saw a large herd right by the highway one day near Georgetown and took a number of photos, when we got them printed it looked like we had taken photos of boulders. I have seen them in Glenwood Canyon also, and many people just zoom past - guess we get so focused on getting down the road we forget to enjoy the trip. I'll have to pay more attention myself. Around Cold Shivers Point I am usually watching the birds catch the thermals - fun to watch.

Hamilton, Canada
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15. Re: Colorado National Monument

Thank You reddirtdawg; Thank you red for all the info, we will for sure keep our eyes open and take the hikes to the lookouts that you suggested, your time and assistance is greatly appreciated. Keep on taking those great pictures. Thanks Bernie

Portland, OR
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16. Re: Colorado National Monument

Thank you to everyone who has posted in this thread. We will be driving from Oregon to a meeting in Denver in July and we are junketizing the trip into a National Park smorgasboard. Our return route had been set to be US 40, in order to see Dino Natl. Monument, but, this thread (it musta been those pictures, eh?), combined with some closed exhibits at Dino has convinced me to head home from Rcky Mtn NP via I-70 and take in CNM with an overnight in Grand Junction.

17. Re: Colorado National Monument

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