Spring has sprung here in the beautiful city of Fort Collins. As I walk around campus, I can find students laughing in groups, hanging hammocks among the trees, practicing sports on the fields, and walking/biking everywhere. I admire the activity and just as any other student has been doing at this point in the semester, I daydream about what my summer will look like. Spring is only a tease of what's to come. Each year I make a "bucket list" for my summer, most of which is moved to the summer following. It's hard to work and accomplish all of the adventures I set out to do. This summer, I promised myself I would spend the summer doing what I truly want because after college, I won't have these opportunities anymore. To begin, I wrote a list of all the places within Colorado that I want to see, hike, camp, or swim at. Here are 8 of my favorite places, and a few I have yet been to!
Colorado "Bucket List"
1. Great Sand Dunes National Park;
the most exciting adventure on my list has got to be the Sand Dunes! With so many activities such as hiking, camping, swimming in the Medano Creek, 4 wheeling, and even sand sledding, this is the first adventure on my list for the summer :)
2. St. Mary's Glacier; Idaho Springs.
This Glacier hike is located off of 1-70. There is a short hike to the top (my friends and I took sleds up in the winter to see the glacier, then sled our way back down the trail). At the end of the trail, you come to the base of the glacier and a lake at the base where you can swim. Camping is not allowed.
3. Paradise Cove Swimming Hole (Guffey Cove);
located near Cripple Creek, the cove is deep, scenic, and surrounded by cliffs; attracting the most adventurous of people. (Can't wait to finally go here!)
**Disclaimer: Cliff jumping is highly dangerous and this article is not a suggestion to partake in such dangerous activities.
4. Hanging Lake; Glenwood Springs.
Hanging Lake is one of my favorite spots in all of Colorado. The hike to the top can be very steep, but is very rewarding for only a mile long. The Lake features beautiful turquoise water and waterfalls. For the best experience, pack a lunch, bring a blanket, and have a picnic at the top :) it's beautiful and you probably won't want to leave.
5. Glenwood Hot Springs;
while in Glenwood visiting Hanging Lake, check out the hot springs for a natural mineral water swim. Open year round; there is a diving board, slide, and lap lanes to keep you busy and entertained.
6. Aspen and Vail
in the summer are both beautiful cities to visit as well and if you're near Glenwood Springs, you don't have much farther to go! These 3 cities are perfect for a weekend trip!
7. Seven Falls; Colorado Springs.
This attraction is privately owned and is a 224 step climb up. Alongside the stairs there are 7 waterfalls and a restaurant and other tourist attractions within the area like zip lining and hiking!
8. Estes Park;
30 miles West of Loveland; Estes Park is home to various wildlife creatures including elk, moose, bears, etc. There are many options for overnight/weekend stays as well as hiking/camping. Estes Park is known as the base of the Rocky Mountain National Park.
The best advice I can give for any adventure this summer is to take care of yourself and bring along great friends! Pack lots of food, protein bars, water, and lots of sunscreen and protection from the sun; glasses, hats, etc. The last thing you want to be doing is taking care of a sunburn. Can't wait to see what adventures everyone is up to this summer!