Glenwood Springs is one of my favorite, scenic Colorado mountain towns. Conveniently nestled along I-70, it hugs the confluence of the Colorado and Roaring Fork Rivers. This town has an interesting past, and boasts a lot of rootin’ tootin’ Wild West history.
Dying of tuberculosis, Doc had hoped to take advantage of the reputed curative power of Glenwood’s naturally heated spring waters. (BTW – there’s a large hot springs family pool located here, which is very fun and open to the public). However, the sulfurous fumes from the spring may have done his lungs more harm than good. He died at Hotel Glenwood in 1887, aged 36.
Glenwood Springs Nighttime Hike
However, recently inspired by an excellent (former Alaskan) outdoor blogger’s post The Winter Fun Doesn’t End When the Sun Goes Down … when we arrived late in the afternoon on our Extended-Family Day Adventure to Glenwood, I was up for a hike despite the dwindling daylight.
Glenwood Springs – Doc Holliday’s Grave Site Trail
If you ever find yourself in Glenwood Springs with a little time to spare, I strongly encourage you to hike the trail to the cemetery containing Doc Holliday’s grave site. The trailhead is actually right in the center of town, in a residential area at the corner of 12th St. and Bennett Ave. Once on the trail, you quickly leave the urban area feel. It’s a short, 1/2 mile uphill hike.
The intriguing history of the tombstones found at the top of the trail, along with the sweeping views of the surrounding mountains and being able to gaze down at the town of Glenwood Springs tucked in the valley below, are well worth the effort.
A crisp December afternoon, we started our hike around 4:30. We geared ourselves and the kids up with warm boots, hats, and gloves (and in my nephew’s case, a pair of socks on his little hands, to compensate for a slight mitten shortage) before we set out. It’s just not fun if you’re cold.
As the sky slowly darkened, the lights of the town below slowly appeared. Leaving with about 1/2 hour of daylight left offered us the chance to see the sights from two contrasting perspectives. On our way up: we took in the mountains, trees, and landscapes. On our way down: we took in the clear winter night sky and beautifully lit up town below.
It was such a great time! I highly recommend this experience, or trying an equivalent one near you.
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Have you taken any nighttime hikes? Any specific trails you’d recommend to visitors?