The very best hiking, camping, paddling, fishing, climbing, mountain biking, and road cycling within two hours of Denver.
Four adrenaline-pumping activities to try in Colorado this summer.
Why We Love It: The exhilarating, bird’s-eye view of Colorado’s sweeping landscape catches your breath while you’re suspended from cables. Colorado’s newly opened Soaring Eagle Zip Line is the highest in the world: The 700-foot-long line (you’ll double back for about 1,400 total feet) over the Royal Gorge lets you soar close to 1,000 feet above the Arkansas River. Unlike its traditional counterparts, two riders sit in a chair for the entire three- minute ride. Find It: Royal Gorge Bridge & Park, Cañon City, royalgorgebridge.com
Why We Love It: It makes you feel like a kid again. Grab a group of friends, slather on the sunscreen, and hop onto your inner tube. Depending on the snowmelt, it might be a relaxing jaunt down the river or a rapid-filled, spill-fraught rush. Find It: Boulder Creek; Yampa River in Steamboat; Cache la Poudre in Fort Collins
What: Spelunking tours
Why We Love It: We head up, over, down, and around the mountains all year, but we rarely get to go physically inside the Rockies. Explore some of Colorado’s eeriest caverns—think dark tunnels, narrow gaps, and otherworldly cave formations—on a guided tour that goes hundreds of feet beneath the ground. Find It: Wild Cave Tour at Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park, Glenwood Springs, glenwoodcaverns.com; Lantern Tour at Cave of the Winds, Manitou Springs, caveofthewinds.com
Why We Love It: It’s the closest we’ll ever come to flying. Hook into your harness and let the winds carry you thousands of feet above the ground. Yes, you’ll fly tandem with an instructor so you don’t end up in a tree. Find It: Colorado Paragliding, Golden, coloradoparagliding.com; Aspen Paragliding, Aspen, aspenparagliding.com