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08-27-2022, 07:56 AM   #1
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Denver area vacation last week in September - what to see/where to go?

I plan to be in Denver, CO for a week at the end of September. What scenic places (day trips) can Pentaxians suggest, just in case I choose to bring a camera or two? Not at all interested in indoor stuff or tourist traps.

Thanks!


Last edited by madison_wi_gal; 08-28-2022 at 03:48 PM.
08-27-2022, 08:38 AM - 1 Like   #2
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Possibly irrelevant -


Have fun, anyway.
08-27-2022, 09:32 AM - 1 Like   #3
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The airport itself is full of odd treasures. Mountains to the west are amazing.
08-27-2022, 09:39 AM - 1 Like   #4
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Drive to the top of Lookout Mountain. It overlooks the Great Plains and contains the graves of William Cody (Buffalo Bill) and his wife. East of Denver is pretty much flat and not much to see there except wide open skies. Drive US 40 up and over the Berthoud Pass to Winter Park. Very scenic drive.

08-27-2022, 10:21 AM - 1 Like   #5
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Colorado Railroad Museum in Golden, and Rocky Mountain National Park is in the area.
08-27-2022, 10:31 AM   #6
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Thanks so far!

Still trying to obey rules and not talking specifically about photography (although this forum has a few of those sorts of topics) but I'm thinking K-01 (Full Spectrum) and K-3 III with... (some lenses). Want to pack light. 55-300 def, 10-17 also def. Maybe 2 more.
08-27-2022, 12:21 PM - 1 Like   #7
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@madison_wi_gal

may be a little dated but these threads might have something that could be of interest to you while you are in Denver

QuoteQuote:
looking for help: local info and ideas needed for Denver Colorado trip in June
my wife and I will be arriving in Denver in June 9 late morning and leaving late afternoon on June 12, 2019 . . .
looking for help: local info and ideas needed for Denver Colorado trip in June - Page 2 - PentaxForums.com

QuoteQuote:
looking for suggestions for RiNo section of Denver
https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/43-travel-events-groups/380611-looking-h...ml#post4537382


Last edited by aslyfox; 08-27-2022 at 12:41 PM.
08-27-2022, 12:23 PM   #8
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What kind of transportation will you have? Roxborough State Park is a nice hiking spot, not too strenuous. (The local idea of an easy trail is broad and may be "no rope required".) Roxborough is not all that close to the center of the city, maybe 40 minutes by car. Red Rocks is a good hike too, but check their web site because they have a busy concert schedule and access changes. The amphitheater is popular with excessively healthy people running up and down the steps. You can see the airport from there, quite a distance away.

Aspens start to turn maybe one or two weeks into September but that varies with altitude. There should be some around at the end of the month. There should be snow if you get high enough.

Rocky Mountain Arsenal National Wildlife Refuge has a loop road drive through tour. It is in between the airport and the city. They have a bison herd, usually at telephoto distance. If you are lucky you can arrange a shot with a grassy plain, bison and snow capped mountains that hides the very urban area surrounding the refuge.
08-27-2022, 12:42 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by Just1MoreDave Quote
What kind of transportation will you have?
My own car, AWD 3.6L 289HP SUV with very grippy Nokian WR4 tires. Driving from Wisconsin, stopping in Omaha overnight.

I can hike, but not run up stairs Snow itself (on plowed roads) is not bothersome, but panicky other drivers are.

Bison sounds fun, I'll have the 55-300 (not PLM) and maybe bring 1.4x-2x converter? Emptyish Red Rocks Ampi fine, full of people.. naw.

The K-3 III can shoot anything but I want to give the IR K-01 a nice workout with lots of contrasty scenery and huge skies. I'll probably just leave the 20-40 on that (or 10-17).

---------- Post added 08-27-22 at 14:43 ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by aslyfox Quote

Thanks!

Last edited by madison_wi_gal; 08-28-2022 at 08:13 AM.
08-27-2022, 01:55 PM - 1 Like   #10
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Depending on weather conditions, you could go a bit south and drive up Pikes Peak, or go west and drive up Mount Evans, or go a bit north and visit Estes Park and Rocky Mtn Nat'l Park.

Depending on how you feel about night time driving in the mountains, I would go with Mount Evans. Get up early, leave Denver about 4 am, go west on I-70 and follow the signs. Go carefully up the road as you get higher, and you should get to the top well before dawn. With luck, the road will be open all the way to the summit (highest paved road in the Lower 48), but go as far as possible. Climb up away from the road into the talus slopes, find yourself a comfortable rock, and wait for the day. You will hear elk bugling, marmots, and who knows what else. The view spans the entire Denver basin as you look out onto the flatness of the plains. As the sun rises over the plains, you will get a wonderful experience (especially if you are a Flatlander like most Wisconsinoids are <grin>). It *might* even be worth taking a snapshot or two...

When you descend, then you get to see why the road must be driven carefully. Some folks might prefer driving it at night when they *can't* see... But you'll have a number of short hikes around the summit area well worth it, plus the aspens will be gorgeous, bristlecone pines up there, and just plain ol' GORGEOUS country.

https://www.google.com/maps/dir/denver+CO/Mt+Evans+CO/@39.666923,-105.456257...6!2d39.5883005
08-27-2022, 05:41 PM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by RoxnDox Quote
Depending on weather conditions, you could go a bit south and drive up Pikes Peak, or go west and drive up Mount Evans, or go a bit north and visit Estes Park and Rocky Mtn Nat'l Park.
etc.

Oooh, nice! If I can pull a 14' boat on I 40 in "The Gauntlet" I should be able to do this.
08-28-2022, 05:12 AM - 1 Like   #12
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Garden of the Gods is about an hour south of Denver (close to Colorado Springs) but it's stunning and worth a visit.
08-28-2022, 03:17 PM - 1 Like   #13
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And if you do go to Garden of the Gods (highly recommended), then you are ~95% of the way to Pikes Peak.
08-28-2022, 03:38 PM - 1 Like   #14
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In downtown Denver, walkable:
Lobby of the Brown Palace hotel
Capitol building
Boettcher Hall
Larimer Square
Platte River walk
Union Station

Metro Denver via Light Rail/bus
Botanical gardens
Washington Square Park

Outside Denver (look at a map)
Manitou Springs , take the cog railway up Pikes Peak instead of driving
South through Buna Vista to Salida
West up I-70 to Red Rocks amphitheater, mountans and resorts
Northwest up Hwy 36 to Boulder, and then to Estes Park

I used a K-1 with a 24-90 and a CPL for my last trip there. Use the 10-17 for architectural stuff great lens.

Last edited by robgski; 08-28-2022 at 03:44 PM.
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