Located 11 miles south of Aspen on Castle Creek Road lies the town of Ashcroft. Back in the late 1800’s Ashcroft was a booming town. With two newspapers, a school, sawmills, and 20 saloons, the town was even larger than Aspen at the time. However, as quickly as the town boomed up, it quickly went bust. Now a ghost town, the Aspen Historical Society runs tours of the beautiful old town. Ashcroft is the ideal town to experience the blooming wildflower season, which fills the surrounding town with a plethora of vivid colors.
The John Denver Sanctuary boasts the largest perennial flower garden around, as well as stone sculptures of the artist and former Aspen resident’s most beloved songs. The sanctuary sits right along the base of the Roaring Fork River and is a must see attraction for any John Denver fan.
Looking for a nice drive with stunning scenery and incredible views? Take a drive east from Aspen along Hwy 82 towards independence Pass. Driving along this pass, you’ll see some of the best fall foliage in Colorado during the autumn months. The pass starts at 9,200 feet and climbs all the way up to 12,095 feet at the summit with peaks like Mt. Champion, Geissler Mountain, Twinning Peak, Grizzly Peak, and Casco Peak scattered along the drive. Be sure to take your time on the drive! There are plenty of Instagram-worthy pull-offs, trailheads, and even a ghost town to visit along the way.
Climb aboard the Silver Queen Gondola for a lift up to the top of Aspen Mountain to soak up the beauty of Ajax at 11,212 ft. The gondola runs all summer, winter, spring, and a select few weekends during the fall. When it’s not ski season you can enjoy lunch, yoga, as well as tons other things going on at the Sundeck Restaurant.
Catch a show, or even just tour the Aspen community opera house. The opera house has been the community’s performance venue all the way back since 1889. Originally part of the Silver Circuit, a mining-era group of venues, the venue has brought internationally renowned performers from its early days all the way till now. Famous artists and comedians like The Eagles, Jerry Seinfeld, and Kevin Smith have performed at the venue in more recent times.
For the cyclists out there that would rather enjoy these places from the seat of a bike, we offer a number of tours like the Colorado Rocky Mountain Adventure, the Colorado Classic Self-guided Cycling Tour, and the Glenwood Springs, Snowmass & Aspen Multisport Tour. Each itinerary tours the gorgeous Roaring Fork Valley. From cruising through Aspen’s hotbed of trendy boutiques, art galleries, and sumptuous culinary options to a ride along the abandoned bed of the narrow gauge Rio Grande Railroad, we’ve got you covered with the most scenic, yet exclusive rides in the Roaring Fork Valley.