Colorado,  Hiking,  Kids,  Off Road Trips,  Playgrounds


We decided to try something different for breakfast this day and tried out Bobs Place in Avon. The kids and adults enjoyed it, and there were some Gluten Free options on the menu as well which worked well for Nana. We made a couple more stops here during our trip and would highly recommend it.

We needed to take a break from hiking so we decided to try out some more of the 4WD roads in the Vail area. Our trail for the day was the Red & White mountain trail (North West of Vail). After stopping to drop some air out of the tires, we were off!

Not a bad early morning view

This trail was a nice scenic drive through the valleys and mountains in the area. Nothing too hard, but lots of pretty things to look at. We drove through an immense aspen grove that would be outstanding to view during the peak of fall color. In all our travels throughout Colorado, we have never seen aspens on this magnitude. I can see why some of the “jeep” tour companies in the area run through these parts.

One of the many overlooks
Winding our way up the shelf roads

We didn’t run across much traffic on the trails in spite of an active hunting season going on. But we did run across some sheep and their wary guard dogs.

We drove through several large herds on our way up

After bumping around on the trail for awhile, we stopped in a nice valley to let the kids get some wiggles out and eat some lunch. This also knocked another item off my vacation “Must Do” list which was lunch on the trail with the family.

After lunch we descended back down the mountain to arrive at…

… yet another playground in Vail. So many cool playgrounds out here that the kids were just in heaven!

After taking a little rest in the afternoon, we headed out to the Piney River Ranch outside of Vail. Piney River Ranch is more unique as that it is one of the few alpine lakes you can drive too instead of requiring a long hike. The Ranch has cabins, a restaurant, gift shop, hiking trails, and more.

The road to the ranch in only about 12 miles long, but the website does warn you to allow 45 minutes to drive it. It’s not difficult and can be done in a car, but it is very rough and rutted. We especially had to go slow to allow for the parents to follow in their Astro van. We grabbed some dinner at the lodge (good food!) and hung out waiting for the sunset.

“Is the sun setting yet?”
Playing around and attempting family photos while we wait.

It was amazing to watch the sun sink lower and cast a lovely golden glow on the face of the mountain. The reflection in the lake made it double the view. We also had fairly pleasant weather for the kids to wander around while we waited on the sun.

worth the wait

Once the sky had finished its show for the day, it was time for an even slower trip back down the road in the dark. The parents were even fortunate enough to see a giant moose right in the middle of the road on the way back to town. Like most wildlife, it ran away before a picture could be taken. It was a late night for us all, but what a beautiful evening.

On to day 7….

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