Night Hike to Doc Holliday’s Grave

Glenwood Springs Night Hike

Overlooking Glenwood Springs, CO – from the trail to Doc Holliday’s Gravesite

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.

Doc Holliday, a legend from the O.K. Corral gunfight, spent the final months of his life in Glenwood Springs and is buried in the town’s original Pioneer Cemetery.

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 Night Hike View

Up we go… and it’s getting darker…

Glenwood Springs Nighttime Hike

Glenwood Springs Night Hike with DadduOk, so let’s get to the night time hiking.  I don’t know about you, but the winter months tend to hermit-ize me just a bit.  Maybe it’s the dark.  Maybe it’s the cold.  Take your pick.

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 Night Hike the Crew

Here comes the crew!  Making our way up the wide, snowy trail.

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.

Glenwood Springs Night Hike Family

Bring family, it’s always more fun! (My brother, sister-in-law, and nephew.)

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.

Glenwood Springs Night Hike Shovel

You may not NEED a mini shovel, per se… but they’re always fun to mess around with.

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.

Glenwood Springs Night Hike

Grainy, night-time photo… but you get the idea. My family enjoying our nighttime hike! (Ok, son looks crabby, but it’s because he doesn’t want to SIT… )

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.

Glenwood Springs Night Hike

Glenwood Springs night hike, view from Doc Holliday’s Grave Trail (Photo courtesy of my sister-in-law Wendy)

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?

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About COMtnMom

Hi, I'm Tami! Mom of 2, full time software engineer, who loves enjoying the outdoors, staying active, travel, reading books, and eating desserts. We are pretty much always planning our next trip to Disney...

Comments

  1. What beautiful pictures! You make it look like fun with a gorgeous background. I believe the gorgeous background part but like being a hermit in the winter. Especially at night when it’s freezing. Love the hike and Glenwood!

    • You’re funny, Susan :) That’s why I mentioned the hot springs… need a good thaw-out afterwards!

      I get a strange kick out of studying and reading the tombstones – I think it’s fascintaing. We really couldn’t see them this time, by the time we got to the top – too dark. We need to do it again, maybe when both lighter and warmer.

  2. That sounds like fun! Lots of great photos, too! Makes me want to go. Except maybe for the cold. :)

    • Thanks Steve! It was very fun, but I think the key was that it’s a nice, SHORT hike ;) We were ready to get warmed up afterwards. There’s something about being outside on a crisp, snowy night though… it’s enchanting!

      Thanks for stopping by, and so nice of you (an amazing photographer) to say my pictures were nice. Ha! You’re too kind.

      • One of the most important parts of photography is capturing a moment, which you have done well here. If you aren’t capturing a particular moment, then you set about trying to make the photos look fancy. That’s what I do. :)

Trackbacks

  1. [...] Glenwood Springs is one of my favorite scenic Colorado mountain towns, boasting of an interesting past full of Wild West history.  Not allowing the late start to deter us on our “Family Adventure Day” outing, we bundled up our toddlers and headed out on this short but rewarding trail.  Join us for the sweeping views and snow romping fun, and witness how nightfall gradually transformed this breathtaking landscape. [...]

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