Living in Colorado, I’ve had the opportunity to experience visiting several snowshoeing destinations that many people covet and dream about. I take the mountains for granted and I’m not proud of it. They are what I look at often as I go through life in Denver – although I rarely take advantage. However, when I can absorb a majestic Rocky Mountain experience, one Colorado mountain town will forever have my heart: Glenwood Springs. When I visit, I never take it for granted and nor do I want to leave.
I fell in love with Glenwood when I was child – kindergarten to be exact. I had the opportunity to live there for about a year. I watched my father and mother as they worked and thoughtfully raised me through my early life. My father worked in the neighboring town of Parachute. My mother – for a majority of the time – was pregnant with my sister, Lindsey. And she would later be born in Glenwood – a unique fact about her life.
But as a child, I found my fun and thrills within the landscape of Glenwood. Of course, during the winter it would snow often and in great amounts. Life in the early 80s brought Colorado a lot of snow. At the same time, it brought life to Glenwood. Some of my fondest memories include sledding down nearby hills, enjoying the occasional breakfast at Rosie’s Little Bavarian Restaurant and soaking in the local Hot Springs Pool.
For a kid, Glenwood is a place where life begins and then solidifies into a standstill image of winter perfection. For an adult, Glenwood is a playground that transforms complicated surroundings into simple pleasures of relaxation, unique dining experiences and outdoor splendor. When family or friends visit Colorado and ask me where to go, I always tell them to take a two and half hour drive on I-70 west of Denver.
Although Glenwood Springs isn’t generally associated with snowshoeing, it sits close to many of the best winter destinations in the world. Winter is considered Glenwood’s off-season, which is advantageous for snowshoers looking for good deals and exclusivity from the busy ski resorts. Because that’s what Glenwood is not – a ski resort. It’s somewhat of tourist town, attracting many people to its Hot Springs, but it’s definitely not an over-priced vacation spot. The closest ski resort is Sunlight; it’s a quaint, full-of-personality resort that’s smaller than most in Colorado and cost-friendly.
You will find character and charm in Glenwood; you won’t find aristocrats and posh settings. If you want that, Aspen is about an hour south of Glenwood. Although the Aspen experience is a different snowshoeing article altogether, it’s the location of Glenwood that will warm your soul and not deplete your wallet.
Spend some time in the hot springs after a long day of snowshoeing and you’ll surely be rejuvenated by its healing waters. Enjoy a perfectly cooked steak and a glass of wine at Juicy Lucy’s restaurant. Stay at the historical Hotel Colorado and discover why it was called the White House of the West. Relax and replenish your body in the Vapor Caves to cap off your stay. These are just some tastes of what Glenwood Springs truly has to offer the traveling snowshoer.
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