The Royal Gorge is a canyon on the Arkansas River. It is located near the city of Canon City, Colorado. In 1929 the city authorized the construction of the Royal Gorge Bridge at a point where the canyon cliffs are 1053 feet above the Arkansas River. The site has now grown to include several other features of interest to thrill seekers.
It encompasses some 360 acres and 21 rides. These include but are not limited to the world's highest suspension bridge, the world's longest single span aerial tram and the steepest incline railway.
The park is open all year round. Peak season runs from the end of April to the end of September with off season running the rest of the year. Adult admission is $23 with children 4 to 11 years of age $19. It is possible to get a bridge only pass however the hours for this are between 7 a.m. to 8 a.m. and 1/2 hour before the park closes until dusk. The park opens at 10:00 a.m. but closing hours vary by the point in the season. They vary from 4 p.m. during off season to 7 p.m. during peak season.
Crested Butte Ski Area
Crested Butte was a mining supply town and is one of the largest historic districts in Colorado. It was originally settled in 1880. There are a total of 16 lifts serving 1167 skiable acres with a vertical lift of 2775 feet.
The season is from November to April. Ticket prices vary by the point of the season one gets tickets. There was a two week period where skiing was free (2007 to 2008 season was November 24 to December 5). Mid season adult price is $79 with kids under six skiing free all year. Average snowfall is 300 inches.
Airline service goes to nearby Gunnison (31 miles) and Montrose (96 miles) regional airports. International service via Dallas, Chicago, Denver and Atlanta is available.
Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park
The Black Canyon of the Gunnison is the newest National Park in the United States, being formed in 1999. The park encompasses 14 miles of the Black Canyon and is unique for is sheer walls and narrow distance between the canyon walls. At its narrowest point it is only about 350 m. The walls can be nearly .8 km in height. The Gunnison River, as it flows through the Black Canyon offers, some of the most challenging rapids in the world. Parts of the river are considered non traversable. It is also home to some of the best fishing in the state of Colorado. There are several routes to the inner canyon. There are, however, plenty of dangers. Visit the web site for more specific information and warnings.
There is air service via airports in Montrose, Gunnison, and Grand Junction. The nearest major international airport is in Denver, about 402 km northeast of Montrose. The north rim is 24 km from Montrose while the south rim is 18 km from Crawford. Both the north and south rims can be visited, however to get from one side to the other takes about 2 hours as there is no bridge.
The visitor center is open all year with the exception of Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Years day. Hours: Fall, Winter, Spring: 8:30 am - 4:00 pm ; Summer: 8:00 am - 6:00 pm.Cost is about £7.65 per carload. The park is open every day of the year. However, the north side visitor center is only open a few times during the year. The total length of the south rim road is open only in summer. From about mid April to late November. The road is used for Nordic skiing and snowshoeing starting at Gunnison Point.
Jimmy's Restaurant and Bar
Jimmys Restaurant and Bar is located centrally in downtown Aspen and he offers his guests "Fierce American Food". The menu includes steaks, chops and fresh seafood. As a dessert Jimmy offers his award winning Vulcano Cake and other sweet specialities.
The bar offers its own menu for dining in a more casual atmosphere. There are TV's for watching a game and a well stocked bar, specialised in Tequila and Mezcal. They offer a selection of 67 Agave based drinks, but also Margaritas, Whiskeys, Rum's, international beers and more.
Ever Saturday they host a Latin Dance Party in the Bar which starts at 10 pm and lasts until well after midnight.
Aspen Music Festival and School
Every year since the festival and school have been founded in 1949, more than 350 classical events will take place over the 9 weeks duration of the festival.
Concerts will be given daily in the Benedict Music then, an award-winning venue, the Wheeler Opera House, the Harris Concert Hall and in churches and smaller halls all over town. The events include chamber music, opera, contemporary music and orchestral concerts, but also childrens' programmes, lectures and discussion.
The full programme of the festival is published on the website and visitors may note that many of the events are free of charge.
The School offers up to 750 students from all over the world the possibility to study with some of the best known instructors in the world. Students will participate in classroom lessons, the orchestra, individual lessons, master classes and will gain experience by taking part in the events throughout the festival.
Time : June/August
Ashcroft Ghost Town
Visitors can view 12 original buildings that once made up the prosperous town of Ashcroft. The ghost town is located around 10 miles outside of Aspen and offers guided tours during the summer months. Self guided tours are always possible and entry is free of charge then. Please note that dogs are not allowed on the site.
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