Road Trip Out West: Colorado

Driving across the country I am constantly amazed by the changing landscape and the beauty in all we see. Idaho surprised me with its rolling fields, volcanic rock, and distant mountains. Colorado is all about mountains, plateaus, mesas, and the valleys between them. When we arrived near Grand Junction, Jef found a park that we could explore: Colorado National Monument. It was at the end of our day driving, so we didn’t hike around, but the drive was incredible.

Balanced Rock
This road went through tunnels of rock too

The road was about 23 miles long from one side of the park to the other. There were many overlooks, half a dozen hiking trails that were less than a mile, and quite a few that were longer. However, if you are not interested in hiking, the views from the road are spectacular. It is a National Park so if you have a park pass, like we do, you get in for free, but it’s only $15 per vehicle if you don’t. It’s definitely worth it. You may even see some rams.

Coke Ovens
Independence Monument
Falling Rock
Ute Canyon
View from the Highway

Today we drove to Golden, Colorado. We tried to stop and see some wild horses, but ended up driving down a dirt road for about three miles with nothing in view. We had better luck stopping at Rifle Falls State Park. It cost $9 to enter. We passed by a remarkable turquoise lake on the way.

It says that the waterfalls are on a mile and a half loop. We grabbed some water and our hats and started down the dirt trail. After about two minutes we came upon the waterfalls. You could continue on the trail around one side and explore some caves. The trail continued up around the top of the falls. There was also a short trail around the back of one of the waterfalls. We opted for that trail.

Rifle Falls
Side View
Back side of the falls

Our cabin is on Lookout Mountain. We are excited to spend some down time here.

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