Last Minute Colorado Summer Trip Ideas

Not ready to let summer go? Aching to take one last summer trip? Here are some quick trip ideas sure to make a few long lasting Summer 2016 memories.

Go Biking

Biking is one of the Colorado activities that most reminds me of childhood. I think there was a period in my life – while I was trying to learn to ride a bike without hands – that I peddled more than I walked.

Last minute Colorado summer trip ideas - go biking.
Biking between small farms & wineries in Paonia, Colorado.

Today, when I’m speeding down the Yampa River Core Trail in Steamboat Springs or sailing down the Animas River Trail in Durango, I feel like a kid again.

Ryan and I have been adding biking to our many Colorado travels over the last two summers; renting bikes at the various locations we visit. Most recently we rented bikes from Cirque Cyclery in Paonia and toured small farms and a winery.

Bikes are fun. And they’re even more fun when you do it in one of Colorado’s fabulous locations.

Go Boating

Don’t have a boat? That’s okay, you can rent one. We’re heading to Lake Dillon at the end of the month where we’re renting a pontoon boat with a couple of friends. It will be the perfect way to say goodbye to Summer 2016.

Last minute Colorado summer trip ideas - go boating.
Boating on Grand Lake in Grand Lake, Colorado.

Other Colorado lakes with boat rentals include Steamboat Lake, Grand Lake, Carter Lake and Lake Pueblo, among others. Colorado Parks & Wildlife’s website is a great resource for finding a lake near you.

Go Driving

Did anyone else’s family “go on drives” as a kid? We did. And late summer is a great time to check out some of Colorado’s high altitude drives that close during the winter.

Last minute Colorado summer trip ideas. Independence Pass.
Independence Pass

Independence Pass soars between Twin Lakes and Aspen and provides some of the most breathtaking views in the country. It tends to close around November 1 and not reopen until Memorial Day.

Last minute Colorado summer trip ideas. Trail Ridge Road.
Trail Ridge Road

Trail Ridge Road, which usually closes in early October, is another scenic drive worth the gasoline. The views, the wildflowers and wildlife all make this a bucket list excursion. Trail Ridge Road can be closed until June, depending on spring snow.

Go Rafting

This has been a good year for rafting companies in Colorado. Outfitters that run the Poudre River are hoping to stay open through Labor Day this year and they say it is “looking real good.”

Rafting the Poudre 2 credit Visit Fort Collins Richard Haro
Visit Fort Collins/Richard Haro

Rafting companies along the Arkansas River in Salida and Buena Vista are looking forward to great rafting through Labor Day. They’re already planning to run short, half-day trips after Labor Day as well.

Don’t want to raft? You can always just float. Floating the river is one of the top late summer activities in Pagosa Springs along the San Juan River, as well as Steamboat Springs along the Yampa River.

five things to do in pagosa springs this summer. tube the san juan river.

So there you have it – summer may be coming to a close, but that doesn’t mean you have to put away the flip flops quite yet. Get out there and have yourself one last Colorado summer adventure.


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