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Cliff Palace, Mesa Verde

Cliff Palace, Mesa Verde National Park, CO

Cliff Palace, Mesa Verde National Park, CO

Photo of the Day: Climbing Great Sand Dunes

Hiking Great Sand Dunes National Park, Colorado

Climbing the dunes at Great Sand Dunes National Park in Colorado

Photo of the Day: Colorado National Monument

Colorado National Monument

Colorado National Monument near Grand Junction, CO


Where the Sun Don’t Shine

Black Canyon of the Gunnison, Colorado

Cleaved by the Gunnison River over the course of two million years, the Black Canyon in Western Colorado is so deep and narrow that some areas rarely see sunlight. So forbidding are its chasm walls that no people ever occupied the gorge. Even today, access to the river and lower sections of the canyon are reserved for skilled watermen and climbers. Being neither, we happily kept to the miles of hiking trails along Canyon’s rim.

Shannon at the Black Canyon of the Gunnison

Because That’s Where The Money Is

Telluride, Colorado

It is said that at the height of the gold rush there were more millionaires in Telluride, Colorado, than there were in Manhattan. And while most of those fortunes were made mining, lifting ore out of the ground wasn’t the only way to strike it rich. Butch Cassidy also started a productive career here. His first job lightened Telluride’s San Juan Bank of $24,580 during a brazen 1889 robbery. The sum, worth about $600,000 in today’s dollars, was never recovered.

Over 100 years later, millionaires still flock to Telluride. No longer drawn by the prospects of making a fortune, they come to spend one. A more upscale version of its neighboring mountain towns Ouray and Silverton, Telluride is so used to celebrity guests that we witnessed a casual Kelly Ripa walking the sidewalks completely unmolested and largely unnoticed by citizens apparently familiar with seeing such sights.

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