The Rocky Mountains — Our Top Three Destinations
DELSEY PARIS and THE UNSEASONAL have teamed
up to take a fresh look at travel destinations that go beyond expectations.
Spanning from Colorado, North Dakota, South Dakota, Montana, Wyoming to Idaho, the Rocky Mountains are the largest mountain system in North America. The vast and lightly populated area stretches over 3,000 miles where outdoor aficionados find unspoiled nature, explore old Wild West heritage, discover native culture, rugged mountains, and expansive ranches. The natural beauty of the Rocky Mountains is endless. Within its borders, nine distinctive National Parks encapsulate the great diversity of the region. From Yellowstone National Park and its geysers to Wind Cave National Park featuring one of the world’s longest and most complex cave systems, to Grand Sand Dunes National Park and Glacier National Park with over 700 miles of trails, the Rockies are a paradise for the adventurous visitor.
We have selected our top three destinations in the Rocky Mountains of Colorado that capture the spirit of the region with its unique scenery and vivid history.
Durango — TheHistoric Wild West Town
Once a mining and railroad hub, Durango has developed into a movie backdrop since 1925. After approximately 30 major films were shot in the area — including Around the World in 80 Days and Butch Cassidy and Sundance Kidand films starring stars such as John Wayne, Robert Redford, and Paul Newman — Durango became known as the “Hollywood of the Rockies”.Each year, the Durango Film Festival presents films that were shot in the area. But not only Wild West movie buffs will find heaven in Durango. The town offers countless attractions from white-water rafting and boating to ice fishing on the 126mile-long Aminas River. Durango also has some excellent fishing spots year-round. Trout easily exceed 18 inches. For ancient history, visit Mesa Verde National Park, which is just 40 minutes from
For over 700 years, the Ancestral Pueblo people have called this region their home and have built their houses in the cliffs of Mesa Verde. Today, the ancient stonework of 26 Pueblos still stands and offers a stunning window into the past.
One of the most exciting attractions of Durango is the Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad. Once transporting gold and silver from the San Juan Mountains the train now serves passengers. The 140-year-old
ride will transport you, not only back into the Wild West, but through breathtaking scenery full of untouched nature, past the Aminas River with a two-hour stay at Silverton for exploring and sightseeing. The five and half hour round-trip
should not be missed.
Silverton— The Secluded Mountain Retreat
The entire town, with a population of about 600 people today, is a designated National Historic Landmark filled with gold rush history and a vivid main street lined
with saloons, shops, and lodging. Silverton is the premier gateway into the Colorado backcountry. Surrounded by the spectacular mountain peaks of the San Juan Mountain range, the highest being Storm Peak at 13,487 feet, Silverton is a fantastic base camp for a climbing adventure with countless tour guides available. From ice-climbing on alpine routes to rock climbing and shorter sport-climbing routes, the area offers plenty of variety for beginners as well as for advanced climbers.
In winter, the Silverton ski area attracts thousands of visitors with its unique features — the whole region is nothing but expert terrain. Silverton’s high mountain skiing area, with a base of 10,400 feet and a lift-served summit of 12,300 feet, counts as one of the most spectacular in the state with an unbelievable average amount of more than 400 inches of snow a year. Several heli-skiing packages are available for exclusive slopes with especially steep runs in the remotest parts of the area. In the summer, when the valleys start to bloom and hum, it’s time to explore the area’s beautiful mountain lakes, like Haviland Lake with its excellent boating, canoeing, and fishing opportunities.
Telluride— The Victorian Town
Butch Cassidy robbed his first bank in 1889 in Telluride. At an elevation of 8,750 feet, the town is dotted with pristine Victorian architecture, mining relics, cozy cafes, and majestic retreats. Telluride’s magical transformation from dusty mining town to hippie haven in the late 60s and 70s to world class ski resort plays into its unique charm and spirit. Celebrities like Oprah Winfrey, Tom Cruise, Jerry Seinfeld, and Ralph Lauren have bought land in Telluride —a place where they feel unbothered by fans and paparazzi. Perched on the backdrop of the majestic San Juan Mountains the yearly music festival the Telluride Society for Jazz attracts a world-class line-up of jazz
musicians to play on huge outdoor stages during the day and in historic theatres and clubs at night.
One of the oldest bars in the region is the Sheridan Bar. Its hand-carved cherry wood panels and filigree light fixtures were built in 1895. This architectural gem is located on
the corner of Colorado Avenue and Oak.
Hiking the most beautiful waterfalls around Telluride is maybe the best way to experience and explore the region. The trails vary in difficulty and length. One of our favorite trails is Bear Creek Falls which starts right in the town of Telluride. The two and half mile hike takes about two hours one way and leads through the forest and past colorful wildflower meadows. From the waterfall, you’ll have a fantastic view of beautiful Telluride — one of the best-hidden highlights of the Rocky
Images: Ger Ger Words: Tina Ger
The Unseasonal is a purpose-driven special projects magazine and alternative take on the world – a magazine about passion, travel, beauty, the change in seasons, the unusual, and the human condition. It features timeless pictorials, thoughtful stories, and unique collaborations. The Unseasonal embodies the feeling of a getaway, of slowing down, of exotic places, optimism, breathtaking dreams, unique architecture, and a lightness of being, traced with elements
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