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Pitkin County

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Top 10 Travel Destinations Pitkin County

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22 travelers at this place

  • Day1


    December 23, 2018 in the United States ⋅ ⛅ -9 °C

    So excited to be spending Christmas in Aspen!
    A white christmas is the best!
    Good flight with Qantas and the food was pretty good. I think I had the best dinner I have ever had on a plane plus the snacks kept on coming.

    As per usual I was up all night packing - I seriously have to stop that!

    We had an express pass at LA airport plus wheelchair assistance meaning we go to the front of the queue and we only just made our flight to Aspen in the two hours we had. And that was only because I made an executive decision to abandon the wheelchair and have mum and I make a dash for the gate. They had taken us to the wrong terminal as it had some stairs and there was no way we would have made it getting a shuttle to another terminal. Then they started saying can we go on another flight! And I am like no we have to catch this flight! Zero service and care factor.

    What a rush. But first I had to deal with airport staff telling me we couldn't leave them and the wheelchair. So that was easy when I said we are going! As we dashed off I heard them saying we will never make it!

    Thanks for nothing LAX. No wonder everybody hates going to that airport!

    Anyway we make it onto a bus which takes us to this weird 'gate' which is a shack in the middle of the tarmac.

    Anyway we make it to Aspen.

    No way we and our masses of luggage are going to make it on the free Aspen shuttle so taxi it is. I dash out and secure one telling him I have a mother in a wheelchair plus luggage. So I run back and get the luggage and run out and the driver is about to put someone elses luggage in the taxi! I stand there thinking he must be taking two fares but I get no acknowledgment so I ask.

    Well he says he is taking these other people. I am so flabbergasted. I say to him I just reserved the taxi and was getting the luggage and my wheelchair mother and he says well thats just what we do here.

    Is he kidding! Who does that to someone in a wheelchair I say to him. Anyway as I continue to be flabbergasted the Australian family who were going to take the cab tell me I can have it which was very decent of them.

    Anyway no tip for Mr Mean Taxi Driver.

    Our airbnb is lovely. Wood burning fireplace, very cosy bedrooms and beds, a killer massaging shower and a mid century decor. Love.
    Oh plus a lovely snow covered tree view with abit of the gondola.

    Mum sets herself up on the couch to rest in front of the fire which an australian neighbour lit for us while I go out to explore.

    Aspen is so lovely. A very pretty town. Originally a silver mining town.

    The shops are crazy expensive so strictly browsing only. The people watching is fantastic. Its so nice just wandering. But the lack of sleep starts to hit late afternoon so I do a grocery shop and head home.

    Early night as we are exhausted
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  • Day3

    Hotel Jerome

    December 25, 2018 in the United States ⋅ ⛅ 2 °C

    So lovely having a hot chocolate in front of the fireplace in this hotel.
    Met a mexican family who so admired my christmas beanie that they wanted me in their family photos!

    Way Out There

    Meaghs ! Annie wants to follow your adventures . Is there a link ?

    Meaghan Walsh


    Anne Johnson

    Hello all , thanks for accepting me Meaghan .. would have appeared earlier only I didn’t know you had until just now ..... I can’t help but notice this post is Dec 25 ........ am I too late ?ps : of course I love all the decorating photos!

    Meaghan Walsh

    Hi Anne - welcome! Back 6th February so plenty to go but the free wifi in the carrbean generally isn't strong enough to post or email!

  • Jul2

    Camping @ Crystal River KOA

    July 2, 2020 in the United States ⋅ ☀️ 77 °F

    Thus far, our camping trips in the Phoenix Cruiser have been within 30 miles of the house. We didn’t do this by design, but when it worked out that way, we figured that being near home as we worked on customizing the rig was not necessarily a bad thing. The actual reason for the close-in camping trips was mostly due to availability at campgrounds. We booked where we found space … three days here, three days there.

    This trip, still short at just four nights due to campground availability and a previously made dental appointment, took us quite a bit farther ... about 240 miles. And, instead of heading west into the mountains, this time we headed north and then west ... our destination being Carbondale, Colorado, which is about 35 miles from Aspen.

    We were both up by 5:30a, so getting on the road as planned by 8:00a was not an issue. In fact, it was 7:56a when we keyed in the access code to leave the storage facility. The temp was not yet 70F … that would be rising quickly. Wildfire smoke haze was present in the air, though not nearly as bad as it was when we went to Cheyenne Mountain State Park in mid-June.

    Traffic on I-25N was decent ... perhaps even surprisingly light. It was the opposite in the southbound lanes ... construction related slowdowns. Instead of detouring off the interstate to take E-470, the express tollway on which tolls are currently being waived, we stayed on I-25N through Denver to US-6 and connected to I-70W from there. By 9:30a, we were on our westbound route, beginning the first of several climbs along our route. Our highest point today was 11,000+ feet ... according to RV Trip Wizard.

    [By the way, if you subscribe to RV Trip Wizard and have not checked out the RV Life GPS app, you might want to do so. It integrates with RVTW to function as a GPS with directions on your device ... no more exporting from RVTW to Google Maps. And best of all, it’s free with your RVTW subscription.]

    The only stop we made on today’s drive was at the Visitor Center in Georgetown. They had no Colorado state maps, but at least Mui got a short break. It was a busy place with a small parking lot, but we managed.

    Once through the Eisenhower Tunnel, we had a 7% downhill grade for about 6 miles or so ... the steepest section of the road, with Bethel Mountain straight ahead. Got a glimpse of Dillon Reservoir where I am still hoping we might be able to get in before the camping season is over this year.

    Overall, I’d say that I-70W is one of those rare interstates that passes through some amazingly scenic landscape. It made the drive very pleasant. Mui said it wasn’t a tiring drive because the scenery was so nice. Despite the up and down grades along the way, the Cruiser did well. Even the 8-mile two-way section on I-70 was OK, with the traffic flowing well in either direction.

    The only real traffic we ran into was after we made the turn off from I-70 to Glenwood Springs on CO-82. To say that the town was packed would be an understatement. We might have to rethink visiting Glenwood Springs, and Aspen as well, unless we want to deal with the crowds … which we don’t.

    After topping off the Cruiser at a gas station in Carbondale, we continued onto the KOA, which is located about six miles south, just off CO-133. While I checked us in and paid the balance due on our reservation, Mui unhooked the CR-V. In hindsight, he could have waited to do so at the site since we’re in a pull-through.

    KOAs have never been a favorite campground of ours. Often too crowded ... too many kids ... and the sites too tight. But it was the only place where we found an opening. And that was only because we agreed to switch our dates to the holiday weekend. We prefer not to be camping during the major summer holidays because of the crowds, but in this case … well, beggars can’t be choosers.

    This KOA surprised us ... pleasantly. For one thing, the sites are more spacious than the ones at most KOAs. While the campground boasts a ½-mile of river frontage, we didn’t get one of the sites that overlook the Crystal River. We’re in site 16, one row over. It’s not a bad site. We have shade on the patio in the shadow of the Cruiser, and there are a couple of trees that help with further sun protection. A fence line separates the patio from the road, so there’s a degree of privacy. Our neighbor on the patio side blocks their view of our patio ... and we can’t see them either. That’s good in my camping book.

    The RV sites here are water/electric only … with “honey-wagon” service for long stays available at $10 a shot. We should be OK for the duration of our stay. At $50/night, this is an expensive campground. But we’re only about 20 miles from Glenwood Springs and 35 miles from Aspen, so the hefty tag is not surprising.

    We were settled into our site by 2:00p … floors vacuumed and swiffered … things we brought from home put away. It was 95F indoors … 90F outdoors. But the patio — mostly in the shade and with a nice breeze blowing — was quite comfortable. So, aside from a quick walk over to a couple of open sites on the river to take a peek at the water rushing by, we spent the afternoon relaxing on the patio.

    Not sure what we’ll be doing while we’re here. There are plenty of hiking opportunities, but I am still babying my foot after I did a number on it during the Catamount Falls hike. I did find a few scenic drives that look promising. We’re only at some 6,400 feet high in elevation, so if the forecasted temps hold true, it’s going to be quite hot here. We’ll play each day by ear.
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    Nickie Wilkinson

    We don't stay at KOA's for the reasons you present, plus the high cost. But, this one looks to be a good one. I hope you have a fun stay there. What did you do to your foot?

    Two to Travel

    Bruised one of my toes, so it’s very sensitive.


    I love that trip over the mountains in Colorado on 70. Also, I stayed in Redstone, just south of Carbondale back in the late 70's, with a friend of mine who worked in the mines there. He took me to the Redstone Castle, which at the time was empty and just a story. I just looked it up and it seems it is quite something now. The road along the river is beautiful toward the mountains to the south. We even drove all the way to Peoria back then. Who knows, maybe going south will take you away from the crowds. Wishing for you a wonderful time.

    Two to Travel

    I read about Redstone Castle. They are only offering private tours now due to COVID-19... $150 for 4 ppl. We’ll have to wait until post-COVID-19.

    2 more comments
  • Jul3

    Top of the Rockies Scenic Byway

    July 3, 2020 in the United States ⋅ ☀️ 81 °F

    When we first started planning our camping trip, we figured we’d drive to Carbondale via I-70 and return home via Independence Pass. Further research into the return route, however, uncovered restrictions … no vehicles over 35 feet in length on the 45-mile section of CO-82 that runs through the pass. While the Cruiser is only 28 feet, we didn’t want to drive two vehicles on what promised to be a scenic drive.

    So we decided to do the drive as a day trip instead. The plan … drive CO-82 up to and through Independence Pass and return via US-24 and I-70. It turned out to be an 11-hour outing that we made longer mile-wise because of our decision to make a loop back to Carbondale. But doing an in-out on CO-82 would not have saved us any time as the road is narrow and winding, and has steep grades that require slower speeds.

    There was an upside to doing the full loop. Not only did we drive the section recently added to the "Top of the Rockies Scenic Byway" — CO-82 through the pass — but also the original 82-mile byway — US-24 through Twin Lakes, Leadville, and Minturn to I-70. A nice bonus.

    CO-82 is not the highest road in Colorado. That honor goes to three others. What makes this road special is that it climbs steadily towards the Sawatch Range, located in the middle of the Rocky Mountains. At its peak is Independence Pass — at 12,095 feet … the highest paved mountain pass in Colorado. From this point, the road descends steadily into the valley of Lake Creek and then connects to US-24.

    The views along CO-82 are fantastic … especially when the road reaches above the tree-line to the alpine tundra zone. There are lakes and rivers, valleys rimmed with high mountains still sporting snow on their peaks, forests of fir and groves of aspen. And then there are the “WOW views” of the Continental Divide at Independence Pass. I have since read that it is recommended to do the road east-to-west as the views are better. We might try that another time. In the meantime, we have no complaints about how the views unfolded on our west-to-east route.

    Needless to say, we made stops along the way … a number of them, in fact. Luckily, there are plenty of turnoffs … some just big enough for a car … others larger. In most instances, however, we were the only ones pulling over.

    When we got to the Weller Lake trailhead, we decided to stretch our legs a bit and check out the alpine lake. The trail suited us perfectly … just .6 miles each way, and with an elevation gain of only 500 feet (starting at 9,300 feet). That the trail was categorized as easy meant that I didn’t have to worry about my bruised toe.

    Once we crossed the bridge over the Roaring Fork River, we found ourselves on a narrow, dirt path. Except for the rocks we had to negotiate, the trail lived up to its designation as being easy. We encountered a number of people along the way, but everyone was courteous. As we often do when hiking — especially in the age of COVID-19 — we stepped off the path for added distancing to let others pass us.

    The trail took us through the Collegiate Peaks Wilderness of the White River National Forest to Weller Lake. The view at the end of the trail was fantastic. Rimmed as the water is with huge basalt boulders, at first, it seemed that we’d have to limit ourselves to a single viewpoint. But scrambling over some of the rocks, we found a better vantage point.

    With no winds to ripple the water, the mountains on the far side were reflected on the calm lake ... a delightful scene that we stuck around to enjoy for a bit. Paddle-boarders who came ashore nearby suggested that we take a spur trail to a waterfall that runs down into the lake. As it turns out, the spur had a closed sign … which we obeyed.

    Our next stop was at the Grottos Day Use Area, also in the White River Forest. I had read about another short trail that starts from the parking lot, but the trailhead was a zoo. So, instead of walking, we collected our portable picnic table and went looking for a place to have lunch.

    I had my eye on a patch of gravel beach on the far side of the bridge spanning the Roaring Fork River. Alas, a family with several young kids beat us to the spot. Since they did not look like they would be leaving anytime soon, we followed a small trail through the trees to another patch of gravel on the riverfront. Unfortunately, there was another couple camped out there already. So, we set up our table in the forested area. A lucky turn of events for us as it started sprinkling rain even as we were setting the table. The trees provided the necessary cover so that we did not have to rush through our meal.

    After lunch, we continued our drive. Spotting the remnants of what used to be the Farwell Mill #2 at the edge of CO-82, we made our next stop at the ghost town of Independence. The place was once the first mining site in the Roaring Fork Valley. According to legend, prospectors discovered the Independence Gold Lode on 4 July 1879 … hence the name of the town in which 300 people were living by 1880. The town didn’t survive long. The population was down to 100 eight years later. In 1899, when the worst storm in Colorado’s history cut off supply routes, the miners dismantled their homes to make skis and escaped en masse to Aspen.

    Our next stop was the highlight of our day — the Continental Divide at Independence Pass — and the highest point of our day at 12,095 feet.

    I already mentioned that the views here were awe-inspiring. The sun was out again by the time we arrived at Independence Pass, adding to our pleasure in the day. That there were a couple of small tundra ponds to reflect some of the mountains and the sky was an added bonus. Though the place was crowded with parked cars, we ventured out on the trail to the overlook, donning masks as a precaution.

    By the time we began the descent from the pass, it was already 4:30p. We made a few stops on the way down but didn’t dally long. At the junction with US-24, we turned north towards Leadville. The murals we spied as we drove through the historic downtown area invited us to dally, but we promised ourselves that we’d return to the area and pressed on.

    US-24 proved to be another curvy road … two-way … narrow. The landscape was beautiful, but with the sun blocked by the high mountains, the scenery didn’t inspire photography. Nonetheless, we enjoyed what we saw as we made our way to I-70.

    I-70W was a cinch. No traffic to speak of … which I thought was surprising for the 4th of July long weekend. But mine is not to question why … rather, to appreciate it. Even the short section that narrows down to a single lane due to construction was easy to navigate.

    A quick stop to top-off the CR-V’s tank in Glenwood Springs added a 5-minute delay to the Garmin’s estimated arrival time at the KOA. By 8:30p, we were parked at our site. Time for some R&R.

    I was horrified to see an inflatable movie screen set up by our neighbor on the hook-ups side. The screen was intended to keep the kids entertained as the adults had their own group party. Luckily, these campers seem to be courteous enough to consider those not part of their group. They kept the volume low. Low enough, in fact, that Mui and I, sitting on the patio, could barely hear the sound.

    Since we had a long day today, we plan to do something easy tomorrow. Still debating what that will be.
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    Nickie Wilkinson

    Such beautiful country. You guys had a very long day, but saw some majestic scenery. Seems like you had to share with lots of other folks who were Out and About on the trails. At least you got to go, is my take on it. We're all in for the shorter trips.


    That looks like a fun paddle

    Two to Travel

    Unless there is another access point from elsewhere, no easy way to get the kayaks there. The paddle boarders we saw had inflatable boards that they brought in their backpacks.

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You might also know this place by the following names:

Pitkin County, مقاطعة بيتكين, Питкин, পিটকিন কাউন্টি, Condado de Pitkin, Pitkini maakond, Pitkin konderria, شهرستان پیکتین، کلرادو, Pitkinin piirikunta, Comté de Pitkin, Pitkin megye, Փիտկին շրջան, Contea di Pitkin, ピトキン郡, Pitkin Kūn, Hrabstwo Pitkin, پٹکن کاؤنٹی, Comitatul Pitkin, Округ Питкин, Піткін, پٹکن کاؤنٹی، کولوراڈو, Quận Pitkin, Condado han Pitkin, 皮特金縣