When it comes to winter road trips, people will want one of two things. Some love all things winter and love bundling up for a day in the cold. Others crave something a little less invigorating for their down time. Snowbirds like these can’t wait to shed the extra layers and head out for fun in the sun.
This blog is for both.
Cold Winter Fun
One of the best cold-weather winter road trips can be found west of Denver, Colorado. While the skiers already know to hop on I-70 and head west to visit downhill heaven, you don’t have to be a winter sports enthusiast to enjoy the fun of winter or the natural beauty here.
If you’re looking for a day trip out of the city, head out to Morrison, home of the world-famous Red Rocks Amphitheater. Count the steps down to the stage or hike through the unique geological formations, as the park is open year-round. Remember: Whether you’re climbing the stairs or taking a stroll, the elevation at Red Rocks is approximately 6,400 feet above sea level and the air is thinner. Be sure to take it slowly until you’re acclimated.
Once you’ve soaked in the breathtaking views of Red Rocks, how about a mountain river winding through the mountains? Follow the scenic drive along Bear Creek Road (Hwy 74) until you get to Evergreen. (Insider tip: Bear Creek is great for fly fishing in the warmer months, too.)
Evergreen has lots to do, plenty of food to tempt the taste buds and plenty to soothe the soul. One of the highlights of this winter outing is skating on Evergreen Lake. Zamboni-maintained, the lake is usually frozen over from early December through early March. They offer skate rentals once you’re there, too. Wrap things up with a steaming warm hot-chocolate from one of the local shops.
Warm Sun and Sands
If you’re on the other side of the fence, Florida is a vacationer’s delight. Sure, your kids will love you forever when you visit one of the big theme parks (Disney World, Legoland, Universal, Sea World, Busch Gardens), but those trips can be pricey. What if you’re looking for a little natural scenery instead?
Florida has more coastline than any other state in the Continental 48. While the rest of the country feels the icy temperatures of winter, the roads of the Sunshine State will definitely lead you somewhere warm.
Visit the Florida Keys: it’s always a winner. Just south of Miami, follow the Overseas Highway (Hwy 1) across the island chain from Key Largo to Key West. This unique road runs through the islands and over the waterways in between. The remnants of a giant coral reef, the Florida Keys supports a host of plants and animals not found elsewhere in the United States.
The Overseas Highway stretches for over 100 miles. Beaches and state parks abound on this one-of-a-kind drive, but the star of the show is the ocean itself. Seven Mile Bridge can be especially breathtaking. (Insider tip: Time your return trip to the mainland around sunset and get your camera ready.)
Visit the Florida Keys any time you want to shake the grey skies of winter out of your system.