Travel to Northwestern Colorado – Episode 724

categories: USA Travel

Travel to Northwestern Colorado (Podcast) - Dinosaur National Monument and Rocky Mountain National Park

Hear about a road trip to Dinosaur National Monument and Rocky Mountain National Park as the Amateur Traveler talks to Sam and Mina Oppenheim about this part of their western road trip.

Sam says, “Because of COVID, we did a little domestic travel this year. There are some amazing sites up there. Dinosaur National Monument doesn’t get enough attention and Rocky Mountain National Park is among a lot of people’s favorites.”

Sam and Mina did this as part of a larger trip by RV across the national parks of the west. It was their first family RV trip. As a one-week one-way road trip, you can fly into Salt Lake City and out of Denver. Dinosaur National Monument is mostly in Colorado but the Dinosaur Quarry Visitor Center is in the Utah portion of the park. They recommend staying in the Split Mountain or Green River campgrounds inside the park. The Dinosaur Quarry Visitor Center has a unique display of dinosaur fossils left in situ in a vertical rock face where the kids were even allowed to touch some of the dinosaur bones. They also recommend the short Fossil Discovery Trail where you can search for fossils outside of the visitor center.

Chris had a very different experience in Dinosaur National Monument with a 3-day rafting trip on the Gates of Ladore Route on the Green River with OARS outfitters. It is an amazing landscape and an amazing trip. In addition to a whitewater experience guests also hiked up one of the side canyons to see Native American pictographs. The rafting trip left from Vernal Utah which has a small but good dinosaur museum and a local trail where you can see native petroglyphs.

 In Dinosaur National Monument, the Oppenheims visited the cabin of homesteader Josie Morris. Josie lived here for the first half of the 1900s without electricity, plumbing, or neighbors. You can hike from here to a box canyon where Josie kept her livestock.

In between the parks, they visited both Grand Lake and Steamboat Springs. Steamboat Springs in particular is a popular winter sports area. Both areas also have hot springs. Steamboat Springs has amazing restaurants. They had a close encounter with a moose at a campground in Grand Lake which is just 2 miles outside of Rocky Mountain National Park.

Rocky Mountain National Park is known for the highest road in the national parks, Trailridge Road which goes up to 12,183  feet, past the tree line to the tundra that is inhabited by pike and marmots. They enjoyed the hikes at Irene Lake Trail and at the Tundra Communities Trail near the top of the park. The family also enjoyed a horseback ride near the Fall River Visitor Center.

We talk about parks and hikes and RV travel on this episode which will make you want to hit the road on a road trip to the national parks.

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Sawyer International

This episode is sponsored by Sawyer international. We talk about their charity programs which are distributing water filters in 80 developing nations.

Gunnison Colorado

This episode is also sponsored by Gunnison Valley, Colorado. If you are not working from the office, why not work from a beautiful mountain town. See for more information.

right click here to download (mp3)

Show Notes
Travel to Bali in Indonesia- Episode 237
Trekking in the Himalayas in Northern India – Episode 63
Travel to Laos – Episode 199
Dinosaur National Monument
Split Mountain Campground
Green River Campground Book camping
Rafting the Green River (Gates of Lodore) – Dinosaur National Monument – Colorado
Quarry Visitor Center
Fossil Discovery Trail
Josie Morris Cabin
Butch Cassidy
Butch Cassidy’s Childhood Home – Panguitch, Utah
Grand Lake, Colorado
Steamboat Springs Colorado
Stagecoach State Park
Elk Creek Campground and RV Park, Grand Lake
Cruise America
RV Miles Podcast
Living the RV Life – This Week in Travel #242
Holzwarth Historic Site – The Never Summer Ranch in Rocky Mountain NP
Trail Ridge Road – Rocky Mountain National Park
Irene Lake Trail – Colorado | AllTrails
Alpine Visitor Center – Rocky Mountain National Park
Tundra Communities Trail – Hike to the Toll Memorial in Rocky Mountain
Rock Cut Overlook On Trail Ridge Road In Rocky Mountain National Park
Fall River Visitor Center – Rocky Mountain National Park
The Stanley Hotel
Campground in Estes Park Colorado – Yogi Bear Jellystone Park


Please don’t stop taking us around the world
by browningshooter
You cover my favorite subject and it’s a pleasure to listen to a well-spoken adult who knows their geography and history. I recommend listening to all episodes, as some destinations which one might not expect to hold much interest actually turn out to be among the best. I’ve always wondered though, how you find the time to create a weekly show like this along with your real job, family, travel, etc? Thank you Chris for your excellent and interesting podcast.

Great to listen to when looking for travel inspiration
by Marina ‘ The Trader Chick ‘ 
In this podcast, you will find information, tips narrations, and itineraries for tons and tons of different destinations from around the world. There are countless episodes where you can listen to guests talking about some of their favorite places they have visited and explored thoroughly. 

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Travel to Northwestern Colorado (Podcast) - Dinosaur National Monument and Rocky Mountain National Park #colorado #utah #national-park #rocky-mountain #dinosaur #road-trip Travel to Northwestern Colorado (Podcast) - Dinosaur National Monument and Rocky Mountain National Park #colorado #utah #national-park #rocky-mountain #dinosaur #road-trip

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Chris Christensen

by Chris Christensen

Chris Christensen is the creator of the Amateur Traveler blog and podcast. He has been a travel creator since 2005 and has won awards including being named the "Best Independent Travel Journalist" by Travel+Leisure Magazine.

One Response to “Travel to Northwestern Colorado – Episode 724”

carla mowell, podcaster, Wyoming My 307


Great episode, near my backyard! About Pika, I did some research for my own podcast, and learned that they inhabit a very specific altitude and are found across the planet, including Japan…and yes, Pikachu is a Pika!

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