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Old 05-02-2013, 11:30 AM   #1
Disney Springs
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Glenwood Springs, CO - Anyone vacation here?

DH and I have scheduled a 3 day vacation over the 4th of July weekend in Glenwood Springs. We are so excited! It's about a 3 hour road trip for us, so that'll be fun....I love road trips.

Anyway, I've never been there, and DH only visited Glenwood Springs as a child, so he doesn't remember much. We're staying at the Glenwood Hot Springs Lodge, and plan on going to the Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park.

Obviously we plan on hitting the hot springs pool, and mini golf. What other activities are 'not to be missed'?

Also, any tips for preparing for the Glenwood Carverns? The Disney planner in me is already thinking about it being crowed over the holiday weekend, so maybe we should go at park opening.....is that important? Planning on walking tour of caves, 4-D movie, and a few rides. Important to do these in a specific order? (Ugh, there's my Disney brain again!)

One more thing: We are looking for good local restaurants to eat at. Any suggestions? Nothing too fancy. Somewhere we can knock down some beer and burgers....stuff like that.

Thanks for any help!
Me: 34 DH: 39

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Old 05-02-2013, 03:57 PM   #2
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First off, just want to say I am jealous! We did a 3 week vacation in Colorado and Utah last summer and I really wanted to stop in Glenwood Springs, but we just couldn't fit it in.

But we did get to do a very popular hike in the area called Hanging Lake Hike. I really can't even begin to tell you what a beautiful area it is. Just think crystal clear lake with wide waterfalls falling into it. Below I copied my notes that I took from TripAdvisor last year. The only inconsistency I have with it is it is very steep and not as easy as the notes say, but it is worth it and there are lots of spots to rest along the route. And the parking lot does fill up early, we got one of the last spots at 11:00 on a weekday. I heard sometimes (especially weekends) they have a ranger in there making people go back out to the highway if there are no spots. Have fun!

From Trip Advisor:

Hidden within the steep walls of Glenwood Canyon on Interstate 70 about 150 miles west of Denver and 7 miles east of Glenwood Springs, Colorado lies a popular and relatively easy hike up a side canyon to a beautiful lake and two waterfalls.

The trailhead can be somewhat tricky to find now that the Interstate highway bypasses part of the canyon by going through the Hanging Lake Tunnel. One can only get to the trailhead when heading eastbound on I-70. This means that if you are traveling westbound on I-70 you must actually pass Hanging Lake (while in the tunnel) and exit at the Grizzly Creek rest area (and trailhead) several miles to the west. At Grizzly Creek, exit the highway, turn left and immediately turn left again so that you are now on the on ramp to I-70 eastbound. Pass the exit to Shoshone and several miles later you will get off the highway at the exit marked Hanging Lake (just before you would enter the tunnel - eastbound - if you had not left the highway). The parking area is well taken care of as it serves a dual purpose of rest area and trailhead

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Old 05-02-2013, 07:33 PM   #3
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Hot Springs

I'm jealous too! I remember loving to go to Glenwood just to swim in the hot springs! Since you have a car, you could visit Aspen or go to Maroon Bells, which is a beautiful area and nice hiking too.

Whatever you do -- enjoy!
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Old 05-03-2013, 12:07 AM   #4
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We like the Italian Underground and the Glenwood Canyon Brewing Company. Both are walking distance from the hotel.
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Old 05-03-2013, 12:10 AM   #5
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I'm from Denver. I agree with visiting Aspen and going to Maroon Bells. I've never been to Hanging Lake but my daughter enjoyed it. Sorry, can't help with food. We usually just pop into Qdoba.
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Old 05-03-2013, 09:57 AM   #6
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It's a beautiful area and the Caverns are amazing! Keep yourself hydrated and be ready for the change in altitude.. Our family used to lived in the Brighton area ( Denver suburbs) for almost 5 years and I never get used to the high altitude.. have fun and happy travels !!

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Old 05-03-2013, 12:48 PM   #7
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The Glenwood Springs Brewery was a decent place to eat. The pretzels were really good if my memory serves me correct. And fresh beer is always a plus! For us one of the main draws was the memorial to the firefighters that died in 94. Definitely visit it and read the stories. And, if you are so inclined, there is a trail on Storm King Mountain where it all happened. As DH and I were both still wildland firefighters when we visited, it was a very emotional experience.
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Old 05-03-2013, 05:41 PM   #8
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I have family who lives in Snowmas and Basalt which are just south of Glenwood. We have stayed in Snowmas during July 4 weekend and if memory serves correct this was the year that we did of the Glenwood Caverns stuff. Of course this was about ten years ago. I don't recall anything being crowded. I can't remember doing anything special for the cave tour. It was very basic. Snowmas has a wonderful July 4 celebration with live music. It is about a 45 min drive from Glenwood Springs. We always go white water rafting. Of course we don't use any of the tours since my family members have all of the equipment so I can't offer any advise on that. There are a lot of horse back riding opportunities as well although they are out of our price range. Have a great trip. There was an awesome BBQ restaurant in Besalt. It was right along the main highway going through. I wish I could remember the name. It was an upscale BBQ place but prices were still reasonable and you can be casual while you are there. I only mention it as it was some of the best BBQ I ever had and it was not you standard food. My sister got the sprimp and grits that were out of this world. Next door to it was one of the best Mexican food restaurants I have haver eaten as well.

I just looked up the name of the restaurant on tripadvisor. It is Smokes Modern BBQ.


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