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Telluride/ In-town Versus Mountain Village

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Dallas
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Telluride/ In-town Versus Mountain Village

I'm visiting in early June (before Bluegrass) and am trying to figure out the differences between staying in MV (at Lost Creek) or somehwere downtown (unknown choices yet.) Looking at romantic 4 days with wife. Anyone please advise. Thanks.

Charleston, South...
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1. Re: Telluride/ In-town Versus Mountain Village

I prefer town, you are close to everything and can just walk any where.

In MV, if you are close to the Gondola, then you can just ride it to and from town. I think the atmosphere in town is more quaint also, MV is all brand new and (to me at least) looks like any one of a hundred "condo villages."

Is this your 1st time to Telluride? If so, you will love it. I go there at least once a year.

Dallas
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2. Re: Telluride/ In-town Versus Mountain Village

To Endosunshine: This would be my first overnighter in Telluride. I've day-tripped it from Ouray before. Just bought a few acres outside of Ridgeway (looking at the back of the mountains, Sneffels, etc.) and am really looking forward to getting to know Telluride personally. Tell me more about your experiences there. DG.

Glenwood Springs...
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3. Re: Telluride/ In-town Versus Mountain Village

I am so jealous of you getting property in Ridgeway with such close proximity to Ouray & Telluride! I agree with town verses the village. Although, in town has changed too from the quaint place it once was. When I first started going there, the village was in the very early stages of planning and development. Shop owners were long time locals and remembered you from year to year. I have been disappointed by the changes, but still love the place. The village kinda reminds me of Vail with all of the condos and huge homes. Great place to visit and look around, but not all that warm and cozy feeling. You feel more like a local in town.

And you probably already know this, but bring a jacket. I travelled from Dallas every summer with my girls to the area and have been snowed on as late as July 4th.

Charleston, South...
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4. Re: Telluride/ In-town Versus Mountain Village

One of the best things is how beautiful it is in Telluride, just spectacular! Most of the people are pretty friendly. We own land between Ridgeway and Montrose and also have a family owned house in Telluride. There is nothing on the land yet, we are just holding on to it for now, may retire there.

At one time (many years ago) my husband lived in Telluride, so he is a great skiier, but I am pretty pathetic at it, so I generally enjoy my visits more in the summer. I do really enjoy getting to see a little snow in the winter tho! I don't imaging that you see any more snow in Dallas than I do in Charleston. My husband first went to Telluride in the late '70s and I went the first time in 1992. We got married there in 1994. The B and B where we stayed for our honeymoon has now been turned into some kind of corporate retreat or something.

The hiking around Tell. is really wonderful and the difficulty of various hikes pretty much runs the scale from not too difficult to really hard. On our honeymoon we took one near Alta Lakes and my husband suggested a "short cut". Big mistake, ever since then I have referred to it as the "Honeymoon Death March"!! There is alot of wildlife to see on the hikes or even just driving around in the area. We don't have chipmunks in SC, so I alway enjoy seeing them. When I am there I put peanuts and raisins on the porch and watch them pig out. Now that I think of it there are ALOT of animals we don't have in SC.

One of my very favorite things is the drive between Ouray and Silverton, it is called the Million Dollar Highway, and is just wonderful. It is very steep with lots of sharp switch backs, but the views are beyond description. If you have the time I would highly recommend it. From Tell it takes about 45-50

minutes to Ouray and then (if I remember correctly) about 90 min to Silverton. Silverton is a quaint little town and you can have lunch there and shop around a little and then drive back. Unless things have changed recently the prices are cheaper there than Tell.

Also, something you must do at least once (altho probably not on this trip) is take the dirt road pass thru the mountains to Ouray - the Ima Jean Pass. It requires 4 wheel drive and it pretty scary at times. It is only open about 3-4 months of the year weather permitting. In the fall they have a race where runners race over the pass!! I always think they must be insane, I work out pretty frequently, but that just seems like torture to me.

Well, you were probly not expecting a book. Hope I haven't bored you to tears.

If you have any other questions I would be happy to help answer them if I can.

Enjoy your trip, I mostly likely won't get back until about Aug.

Charleston, South...
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5. Re: Telluride/ In-town Versus Mountain Village

I agree with the previous post about the jacket, it will not be all that warm in early June. Especially compared to TX or SC standards. Even in Aug - if it rains then the highs are only in the 50's and lows in the 30's. Evenings cool down rather rapidly. Compared to what I am used to I always wear long pants and carry a sweater to go out in the evening and that is usually in July or August.

Some of the shops, etc have changed hands, but I can think of at least 4 off the top of my head that the owners/staff have stayed mostly the same for years and recognize me when I come in.

Dallas
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6. Re: Telluride/ In-town Versus Mountain Village

Dear Endo & MtnLife: Thanks so, so much for your thoughts...(and no Endo, it's not too long of a post... I love a good "book".) Endo, you're so right about that "Million Dollar" run from Silverton to Ouray. I've done it several times (summer and winter) and there's nothing like it. In fact, on my last visit to Ouray in January, I checked out of the Comfort Inn in Ouray in the morning (see "Tripadvisor" Review from dgantt from Dallas for a laugh) and tried to get over the pass in "light" snow. Naturally it got heavier, and heavier, and soon there was no oncoming traffic going the other way. I finally got to a place where a huge snowplow had the road blocked, with the driver sitting in the cab sipping coffee and listening to the radio. When I rapped on the window, he was shocked, and said "how'd you GET here?" NEVER again folks....that stuff seemed so easy in my youth, but this time it scared the heck out of me. I crawled back down the mountain to Ouray, and was darn-glad to be there!

The property we just bought is up on the hillside in a place called Pleasant Point (Pleasant Valley) about ten minutes out of Ridgeway toward Telluride. Kind of overlooks "Ralph's" ranch down in the valley, with a nice vista of the backside of the Sneffels range. My brother-in-law has a "spread" in Ouray, and he found it for me, and I'm very grateful. Much like you guys, who knows WHEN I'll have the time (or funds) to build on it, it really is God's country up there. I truly loved my stay in Ouray while putting the deal together, as meeting all of the locals was a gas.

Many thanks for the early-June weather tips...I would have blown-it! Do you guys think it's a mistake to do a soft river-raft ride (due to the cold temps?) Please advise. I can't wait to see some more of the local color, do some hikes (VERY light ones) and take a glider trip (I'm a former pilot.) We pulled th trigger on this thing after checking out Durango and Pagosa, both of which would have been great, but there's nothing like this ridgeline. I did this deal just after a business visit to Geneva Switzerland, and flew over Monte Blanc and the French Alps. This is the closest thing to that I've ever seen.

I can't wait to check it out in June (sneaking-in just before the Blugrass Festival, duirng the Wild-West Festival...not on purpose though :-)

So what's everyone's favorite "Festival" to attend? What's everyone's favorite restaurant?

Thanks for the help.

Don Gantt

Glenwood Springs...
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7. Re: Telluride/ In-town Versus Mountain Village

If you wait for the right time or enough money, you might wait foevery. You could do as I did, say to heck with it all, quit a job you have had for 18 years, sell the house, tell the kids it has been fun and they can move with you or get their own place (ok, they were starting college so that part was easy), pack the biggest UHaul you can find, tow your car and move. I explain it to those who do not understand the call of the mountains as my midlife crisis. I was a Dallas native that spent a lot of time and money here part time. I live a more simple life now (ie I don't have much money), but I am so much richer in other ways, more relaxed and just plain happier. Instead of resolving boredom by going to the mall or out to dinner or a club, I hike or bike or walk. I go to outdoor concerts that are free and share the space with a 100 people instead of 1000's. And I know and speak to about 50% of them. The rewards go on and on.

I love the drive from Ouray to Silverton as well. I have never done it in the winter since, if I don't have to work, I am skiing and don't have time for the side trips. Rafting in June might be a little cool, but you could always rent the went suit. Right now we are having warm temps, so we could loose the heavy runoff quickly and it might be a little warmer then. I have rafted the Colorado here in Glenwood in late May and my teeth were chattering by the end of the day. If it is a warm sunny day you should be fine. If it clouds up, you could be miserable.

I don't know if you have ever done one of the 4 wheel drive trips out of Ouray, but if not you should give it a try. We always go with San Juan Scenic Jeep Tours (they drive, you enjoy the scenery). Their vehicles are completely open and the guides are great. It is worth the money to see that kind of beauty.

Glenwood Springs...
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8. Re: Telluride/ In-town Versus Mountain Village

Favorite Festivals - Probably the Balloon Fest just because I love to watch the balloons. 4th of July in Telluride was a tradition for many years and I suppose that would be my absolute favorite time to be there. It really feels like a community with the parade, BBQ and fireworks. I have been during BlueGrass and had a great time, but everything was crowded. Getting around difficult at times and a couple of restaurants actually ran out of certain items. I prefer to be there when it is less crowded.

Places to eat - Floradora Saloon - Howie (the owner) would visit with my girls and discuss the various sports team pendedants, what was new and who he needed to get up on the wall. He and his wife started out as waitress and busboy and eventually came to own the place. I haven't been in a couple of years, but I'm guessing the still own the place. We also liked Smuggler's Brewpub for casual dining. Since I haven't been in a couple of years, I am sure they have added a number of new places. Since I was traveling with kids/teens, we usually went for the more casual dining. I can't help too much on the upscale or more romantic places.

Charleston, South...
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9. Re: Telluride/ In-town Versus Mountain Village

Howie sold the FloraDora about 4 years ago. It became the Brown Dog Pub.

Stayed basically the same inside tho. The first of the year the woman who has owned the building itself the entire time bought the restaurant business, remodeled the inside and renamed it FloraDora again. I have been to the new version twice (at lunch) and thought the food was good, altho the attitude of the wait staff left something to be desired. Several of the locals I know hate it and say the food is terrible.

Depending on price range there are lots of good restaurants

Harmon's ($$$$) is great for a special occasion, anniv. etc, fantastic wine selection.

Excelsior is relliably good upscale food.

Honga's Lotus Petal (altho now it might just be called Honga's) is excellent asian, Tellurice is also really good, better than I anticipated, considering the hole in the wall location.

La Marmot was always very good, I have not been there in over a year and heard that it changed hands, so not sure if it is still as good.

Sofio's is excellent mexican and margarita's, great breakfast as well.

Smuggler's Brew Pub is fine - just your basic sandwiches etc.

That is all I can think of off the top of my head, there are lots of others.

Clark's Grocery store on the edge of town sells hot soup (to go) at their deli section - the Santa Fe Chicken is wonderful!! Especially if you add a little cayenne pepper to it.

Due to my work schedule I haven't gone to that many of the festivals. I am an endodontist and have to plan everything at least 2 months in advance, due to scheduling. Because of the time change and travel time from SC, it is not very feasible to "zip over" for just a weekend. If I think of more restaurants I'll let you know or if you have a specific one, let me know.

Melanie

Charleston, South...
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10. Re: Telluride/ In-town Versus Mountain Village

Forgot.... I have taken a glider trip with "Glider Bob" in Telluride and LOVED it, well worth it.