Ouray Colorado Vacation Guide and Trip Planning Information for SW Colorado

Best Five Snowshoeing Areas Around Ouray, Colorado

Posted by Maria Ziemba on Thu, Jan 12, 2017 @01:13 PM

Snowshoeing in the San Juan Mountains - An Adventure Not to be Missed!

For the past few days, all of Colorado has been enjoying healthy snowfall. CDOT has been working non-stop, maintaining our roads, and providing access to a variety of winter activities.

The Ouray Ice Park is easily preparing for the Annual Ice Fest at the end of December, but the number of outdoor experiences to be had are limitless in the winter wonderland we call home.

Cross country ski trails beckon, offering miles of serene landscapes to explore. Snow shoeing is yet another means to the back country, allowing adventurers access to a world not many get to experience...

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Tags: things to do in southwest colorado, things to do in winter, ouray colorado, san juan mountains, skiing in ouray

Santa Delivers in Ouray Colorado

Posted by Maria Ziemba on Tue, Nov 22, 2016 @10:39 AM

A CHRISTMAS TRADITION IN OURAY FOR OVER 80 YEARS!

 The Ouray Elks Lodge works all year, holding special events, BBQ's and meetings, raising money for the community. The funds these hardy volunteers raise are used to help pay medical expenses for some, scholarships to deserving students, and FUN! Perhaps one of the most touching events is when Santa comes to town. Elk members hold a special potluck dinner a week or so before Christmas, to help out Santa and his elves by stuffing dozens upon dozens of stockings. On Christmas Eve, several members of the club offer their services even further to St. Nick by becoming honorary elves for the evening, driving him to and fro, across Ouray County in all types of weather, to help him deliver gifts and good cheer.

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Tags: places to visit in colorado, things to do in ouray colorado, christmas holiday, colorado vacation, box canyon lodge & hot springs colorado, ouray colorado, box canyon lodge & hot springs, things to do in ouray

Ouray Hot Springs - the Perfect Getaway for Fall Colors!

Posted by Maria Ziemba on Thu, Sep 08, 2016 @10:13 AM

As the weather begins to change, and the chill of Fall begins to fill the air, the days get shorter and the leaves show the beginnings of change.  Nothing quite compares to a soothing soak in all natural hot spring waterafter a day of exploring Ouray.

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Tags: geothermal energy, green hotel, ouray, fall colors, natural hot springs, ouray colorado

Wildlife Abounds Near Ouray All Year

Posted by Maria Ziemba on Fri, Apr 01, 2016 @11:12 AM

Wildlife share Ouray with us in exchange for the occasional glimpse.


deeratthetubsYou don’t have to look very far to see wildlife in Ouray and the surrounding area.There are very few places that remind guests not to feed the animals outside your hotel room door, or to watch the hills as you travel north so as to catch a glimpse of the Bighorn Sheep (more likely, you will wind up sitting in the highway for quite some time as they pose for photos) For a long time, there was an old ewe living in the park, but after several relocation efforts, she and her family finally decided that the grass actually is greener about a mile outside of town off of county road 14. 
mooseA few fortunate people have caught sight of moose as they travelled different four wheel drive trails in the summer, and Silverton actually has frequent updates on Moose sightings around the area. Elk do not come into town as often as they once did, but just a few miles north can still be seen in small numbers grazing in the open fields by the cemetery. And of course, the photo of the elk standing on the steps of the Elks Lodge years ago is not a hoax, but was once a common occurrence. 
elk-23The town deer seem to have figured out that they are safest here in the city limits, especially during hunting season. Jack is a huge buck who has made a backyard on Second Street his home for at least six years. He majestically swaggers about town with a full sense of entitlement, safe in the knowledge that no one will harm him. The old floppy eared doe that frequents Second Street is battle scarred and bold. I know we shouldn’t have favorites, but she impresses me. Over the years, she has raised a couple of sets of twins in the field across the street from the Box Canyon Lodge. 
red_fox_scanningThe little red fox who lives by the hot springs tubs is quite a bit more shy, but in the evenings can be seen scurrying from here to there, and I have even seen him running across the street with a field mouse or rabbit in his mouth. There is a Lynx living on the north side of town that has been glimpsed a few times, but it is almost as shy as the mountain lions and wolves in the area.
The black bear living somewhere near the Box Canyon Park has wandered into town a few times. bearsShe and a couple of other young bear made Ouray their personal playground a couple of summers ago, and it almost became the norm to see them at least a few times a week lumbering down the side streets and alleys. Not as often over the past couple of years, thanks to stricter rules regarding garbage disposal, and a more conscious town as a whole.
It’s not that we don’t cherish every time we catch a glimpse of the local wildlife, but part of sharing the land with them is respecting that first of all, these are wild animals; it is not unheard of for even a deer to attack if it feels threatened. Bear have a two strike rule; the second time they are caught in an area inhabited by people, they are put down. Mountain lions have three strikes, and so on. Not to mention, people food is bad for animals. They cannot digest the preservatives we put in our treats; it stays in their stomachs, taking up space, and blocking real food and nutrients from doing their jobs. Even if we aren’t personally feeding them scraps, leaving garbage where it is easily accessible also teaches animals they do not have to work for their food, and reduces their natural fear of us. No one wants to be even partially responsible for one of these beautiful creatures being destroyed. 
blackswift-2Birds of every variety make Southwest Colorado home; Jays, Eagles, Swallows, Owls, and the list go on and on. The Box Canyon Waterfall Park is one of the few known nesting sites for the Black Tailed Swift. Flocks of Wild Turkeys can be spotted in fields all over the area, often close to the highway. Bald Eagles nest outside of Ridgway, around the reservoir, and can be seen surveying their territory either on the wing, or still as statues in tree tops close to the water. At a distance, you might mistake one for a falcon or hawk diving from the sky to capture small prey below. Wild geese and ducks form V’s across the skies, and Woodpeckers join the melee of sound with their own recognizable efforts. 
baldeagleSummer at the Box Canyon Lodge is a frenzy of activity as the hummingbirds arrive and feast at the many feeders positioned around the property. A virtual rainbow of wings and crests surround the front office as Black Chinned, Magnificent and Broad Tailed hummingbirds vie for treats. Everywhere you look in and around Ouray, there are creatures beside and above us. And if you don’t happen to actually see something, you can be sure that they are there, just on the other side of that tree or hillside. 
Evenings and early mornings, a soak in our all natural hot spring tubs are often shared with at least on or two deer, as they graze and enjoy the warm moist ground near the hot springs.
Ouray, southwest colorado
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Tags: wildlife viewing, ouray colorado

Ouray Colorado Hot Springs Historic Pictures from Ouray Museum

Posted by Karen Avery on Wed, Mar 16, 2016 @03:02 PM

The Ouray Museum is a glorious treasure filled to the brim with artifacts from earlier times.  All three floors of the former St. Joseph's Miner's Hospital are filled with artifacts, clothing, domestic appliances, books, newspaper articles, medical equipment, pictures, displays, and small diaramas seeking to explain the history of Southwest Colorado and specifically of Ouray and Ridgway.  

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Tags: things to do in ouray colorado, things to do in ridgway, things to do in southwest colorado, photography in ouray, ouray museum, ouray colorado, things to do in ouray, things to do in ridgway colo

CDOT Provides Amazing Road Maintenance in Ouray County!

Posted by Faith Parry on Mon, Feb 01, 2016 @03:04 PM

The Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) keeps Southwest Colorado safe!

Colorado has enjoyed a genuine snowy winter this year! As we all enjoy the great conditions for a variety of winter activities, the conditions of our roads is always on our minds. What fun would it be to hear about excellent conditions for skiing, ice clibing etc. if there is no safe way to get there?  Never fear! The Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) and our local organizations work extra hard in the winter to keep our roads cleared every time it snows. 

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Tags: getting to ouray, southwest colorado, ouray colorado

Five Must Haves to Drive The Million Dollar Highway Any Time of Year

Posted by Maria Ziemba on Fri, Apr 24, 2015 @10:04 AM

Driving the Scenic Highways of Southwest Colorado is not as scary as you think.

The 76 miles of US Highway 550 between Durango and Ouray, Colorado, often referred to as the Million Dollar Highway, is a combination of three (3) mountain passes accross some of the most breathtaking scenery the country has to offer. One of the most frequently asked questions we get from our guests is whether the road will be open when they are planning to visit.

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Tags: scenic drives, san juan skyway, southwest colorado, colorado, box canyon falls, motorcycles, ouray colorado, san juan mountains, million dollar highway

Five Reasons to Make Ouray, Colo., Your Summer Vacation Destination

Posted by Karen Avery on Tue, Apr 21, 2015 @10:17 AM

Festivals, Hiking, Biking, Historic Mining Highlight ‘Switzerland of America’

Winter won’t last forever (really). Despite the low temps, short days and seemingly endless snow shoveling ahead for much of the country, it is never too early to start dreaming about your summer vacation plans. Here are five reasons to put Ouray, Colo., the top of your to-do list this summer.

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Tags: ouray music, scenic drives, southwest colorado, history of ouray colorado, ouray museum, natural hot springs, scenic jeep tour, ouray colorado, things to do in ouray

Spring Fever Hits the San Juan Mountains!

Posted by Maria Ziemba on Thu, Apr 09, 2015 @06:04 PM

Warm Weather and April Showers Bring Promise of a Spectacular Season in Ouray County!

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Tags: southwest colorado, ouray, wildlife viewing, ouray colorado, san juan mountains, box canyon lodge & hot springs

Ouray, Colorado Celebrates the History of Groundhogs Day!

Posted by Guest Blogger on Mon, Feb 02, 2015 @11:17 PM

Southwest Colorado Looks Forward to Another Six Weeks of Winter

Looks like we will be having another six weeks of winter this year. On the morning of February 2nd, 2015 Punxsutawney Phil came out of his hole and saw his shadow, thus predicting that winter shall continue.

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Tags: southwest colorado, natural hot springs, ouray colorado, ouray ice climbing