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Feel that chill in the morning air? That’s fall making its first appearance. With the first day of autumn less than a month away (September 22), it’s time to start planning some weekend getaways. Of course, leaf peeping should be on everyone’s fall calendar. But we’ve got three other ideas—in Colorado and beyond—to help ensure you’re using all of your vacation days. You’ve earned ’em.
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There’s an adrenaline-pumping new reason to visit the Broadmoor in Colorado Springs: the Fins Course zipline, which opened in mid-August ($169 per person). You’ll zip along five lines (two of which are considered training routes), taking in views of Seven Falls Canyon, and walk across two plank-and-rope suspension bridges 400 feet above the ground. Make a half-day of it by combining Fins with the five lines that make up the year-old Woods Course ($235). Expect to reach speeds up to 45 miles per hour.
Distance: 75 miles
Set an early alarm—you won’t want to miss seeing more than 1,000 buffalo stampede across the grass during the annual Custer State Park Buffalo Roundup (September 30). In its 51st year, this South Dakota tradition brings more than 10,000 people out for the thunderous photo-op and associated arts festival. (The Roundup does have a serious purpose: It allows the park to vaccinate the herd and ensure it stays at a reasonable size of 1,300.) Lots open at 6:15 a.m.—bring camp chairs—and the roundup begins around 9:30 a.m. While you’re in town, don’t miss South Dakota’s other must-sees, including Mt. Rushmore National Memorial, the Crazy Horse Memorial, and Badlands National Park.
Distance: 348 miles
In June, Air Canada began offering daily nonstop flights from Denver to Montreal, Quebec. And it just so happens that October, falling right between summer’s heat and winter’s freeze, is an ideal time to visit. (You’ll still want to bring layers.) Plan to explore this European-esque city by foot, as galleries, shops, and restaurants await around every corner. Plus, flights will only set you back about $356.
Distance: 1,800+ miles