Travel Photo Thursday: In “The Garden of the Gods”

Travel Photo Thursday: In “The Garden of the Gods”

Think Colorado.

Think snow-capped mountain peaks over 14,000’ high.

But think rocks, too.

Red rocks.

You’ll find them not in a national or state park, but in the Garden of The Gods, a Colorado Springs city park.

The paved “Gateway Trail” leads you on an easy stroll through many of the park’s fantastic rock formations.

Not all of the rocks in this part of the park are brilliant red. Some are a muted gray-white.

If you’re not content to merely gaze upward, mouth agape, at these cathedral like spires, get a rock climbing permit from the park, meet up with a climbing companion, and soar far above the tourists milling about on the ground below you.

If cliff-scaling isn’t your forte, but you brought hiking boots along, scramble up the dusty unpaved trail across slickrock and make your way to the Siamese Twins, one of the park’s prime attractions.

If you only have time for a drive-through of the Garden of The Gods, be sure to jump out of your car long enough to photograph what is undoubtedly the park’s most famous feature: Balanced Rock.

(Garden of The Gods is located about 5 miles and a 15 minute drive from downtown Colorado, Springs, Colorado. If you’re staying in Denver, you can reach the park by car in about an hour and 15 to 30 minutes, depending on traffic. Be sure to stop at the Visitor & Nature Center first to view exhibits and get suggestions on where to walk and shoot photographs. Late afternoon, when these photos were taken, is an ideal time to come to the park. The “trading post” provides an opportunity to buy either fine or schlocky souvenirs, get a bite to eat, and use restrooms.)

(Click on an image to enlarge to full-size. Visit Budget Travelers Sandbox for more of this week’s Travel Photo Thursday shots.)

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11 Replies to “Travel Photo Thursday: In “The Garden of the Gods””

  1. I lived in Boulder for 10 years and went to Colorado Springs so many times for hockey and soccer games – but unbelievably I never made it to the Garden of the Gods and I kick myself for it. One day…

    1. Leigh, the first planned stop on my recent trip to Colorado was Estes Park. But that was literally washed off my itinerary by mid-September floods that caused severe damage there, in Boulder, and other Front Range towns.

      Colorado Springs became a “stand-in” for Estes Park. Otherwise, I may have never made it to the Garden of the Gods, either.

  2. The red in the first photo of Garden of the Gods is absolutely gorgeous! It brings back fond memories of our trip there. I can attest that the trails are easy since I easily pushed a stroller along them. Hubby and I had great fun making up alternate names for the different rock formations.

  3. Garden of the Gods is a staple when you are a Colorado kid growing up here. Visiting from field trips in school, to beginner hikes and picnics it is a very cool area. It might be beneficial to note that is the average drive time from the outskirts of Denver to Colorado Springs, and the park is at 1.5hrs, from central Denver or DIA it is to 2hrs+.

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