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Concierge Recommended Day Trips

COLORADO SPRINGS

The scenery shifts as you head south, encountering ranchlands, rural towns and mountains. If you have time, drive up Pikes Peak, the highest summit of the southern front range of the Rockies, for truly once-in-a-lifetime views of towering peaks and glacier lakes. Cowboy fans can head to the Pro Rodeo Hall of Fame; medal-winner-wannabes would enjoy the US Olympic Training Center; hikers will love the 15 miles of trails among the red-rock formations of the Garden of the Gods.

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ESTES PARK

The adjacent Rocky Mountain National Park is worth a trip in itself, with wildflower hikes and sightings of bighorn sheep and elk. In town, the Stanley Hotel, dating back to 1909, is the place for lunch. Along the way, stop in Boulder to visit the Upslope Brewing Co., watch the street performers on Pearl Street Mall or sample some of Colorado’s best restaurants. My favorite return route is the Peak to Peak Scenic Byway, which will take you through the rock canyons and the old mining town of Black Hawk where 18 casinos have set up shop.

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SUMMIT COUNTY

The drive itself, through spectacular mountains, is worth the visit. Stop in historical Georgetown and take the loop railroad or drive the aspen-lined Guanella Pass. In Frisco, have brunch at the Butterhorn Bakery on Main Street and visit the marina; in summer you can go sailing on the Dillon Reservoir at over 9,000 feet. Continue to Breckenridge and ride the Peak 8 gondola for an amazing view, then finish the day on the patio at the Dillon Dam Brewery.

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