The Great Outdoors
Colorado Springs is gifted when it comes to outdoor activities!
The West side is the best side! Because that’s where Pikes Peak is!
The Great Outdoors
We hope you’re well rested and ready to play, because there’s no time to lose!
Broadmoor Soaring Adventure
Who needs coffee when you can zip line your way through the gorgeous Colorado sky first thing in the morning? Start day one in Colorado Springs at The Broadmoor Soaring Adventure, a rare and unique zip line attraction that guides you over the region’s most stunning bedrock and woodlands. (If you’re unfamiliar with the adventure sport, a zipline is simply a pulley suspended on a cable, and it propels you from one high spot to another.) The Broadmoor Soaring Adventure has 10 zip lines, divided between two courses — the Fins Course and the Woods Course.
The Fins Course takes you on a soaring excursion above steep canyons, craggy cliffs, and colorful rocks that make up Seven Falls. With its custom-built suspension bridges and rappel, you can safely take to the air and stroll while marveling at the canyon landscape and glistening streams below. The Woods Course takes you on an excursion high above the lush Colorado forest. You get a bird’s eye view of pine trees, winding creeks, and numerous hiking trails. As you move — or should we say zip — along, the duration of each course gradually increases from 300 feet to 1800 feet. This is great if you’re new to ziplining, as it allows you to ease into the process without overwhelming you. And even though you’re high in the air, you still need to keep those feet protected. Closed-toe shoes (think: tennis shoes or hiking shoes) are the only acceptable footwear for the courses. Also, most of the zip lines and bridges are in direct sunlight, so be sure to bring your sunscreen and sunglasses.
The Broadmoor Seven Falls
You’ve seen The Broadmoor Seven Falls from above, but now it’s time to explore the unforgettable natural wonder at ground level. As the name suggests, Seven Falls is a series of seven majestic waterfalls, located a little under a mile from The Broadmoor, and it is one of the most popular sites to visit in Colorado Springs. (It is so impressive, it even made National Geographic’s list of International Waterfalls!) Known as “The Grandest Mile of Scenery in Colorado”, this resplendent cascade is nestled in the sky-scraping Pillars of Hercules, a 900- foot box canyon. Though the space between the pink granite canyon is a narrow 41 feet wide, the sight of the enclosed waterfalls is unmissable. You and your crew will certainly be in awe.
Crystal clears streams of Pikes Peak water dance and leap along the towering canyon rocks, tumbling a whopping 181 feet from the top of the 224 step staircase. Enjoy captivating vistas of green forest vegetation and scenic rock outcrops while you climb the staggering 224 steps that lead you to the series of stunning waterfalls. Because of all the hiking and walking, it’s wise to bring water and snacks along so you can stay hydrated and energized. And it wouldn’t be a bad idea to dress in layers — even at The Broadmoor Seven Falls, the weather can change at a moment’s notice.
Food, drinks & more
Flying W Ranch Chuckwagon
Founded in the early 1950s, the Flying W Ranch is one of most popular tourist destinations and entertainment venues in the Pikes Peak region. And we know why. All of the structures at the Flying W represent a core piece of western history, both in design and function. Plus, when you visit the ranch, you get to see live demonstrations of old west activities such as horse shoeing, silversmithing, and Navajo rug making. Naturally, as with most attractions in Colorado, there are striking scenes of red rocks and hiking trails, as well as ranch animals rambling all around the historic pioneer property.
Surrounded by thousands of rural acreage in the northwest foothills of Colorado Springs, the Flying W Ranch sits on land that was once owned by city founder, William Palmer. While the history of this cattle farm is as fun as it is fascinating, the Flying W Ranch is also famed for its outdoor chuckwagon suppers. The informal buffet features hearty home-cooked BBQ, trail beans, foil-wrapped potato, biscuits, and applesauce — all served on a tin plate. Remember we said something about entertainment? After dinner, you can catch a show by the celebrated Flying W Wranglers, one of the world’s oldest western singing groups. (They were created by the ranch’s original cowboys back in 1953!) The new crop of Flying W Wranglers are still dazzling audiences with their music-filled, bunkhouse comedy stage shows, but you might have to wrangle yourself a reservation to see them.
Grab your walking shoes and camera, and start exploring these westside wonders!
Drive the Pikes Peak Highway
The 19-mile stretch of road runs from Cascade all the way to the summit of Pikes Peak and straight through the clouds. Ok, maybe it doesn’ go that far, but it does take you to the top of the mountain, which is a whopping 14,115 feet! While technically a toll road, the scenic, winding highway provides plenty of breathtaking views of the Pikes Peak region’s most notable natural wonders, including lakes, wildlife, and of course, those tree-covered peaks we like to call mountains. If you don’t feel like driving all of the highway’s 19 miles, there’s a complimentary shuttle service offered at two separate locations: Glen Cove, which is at the 13-mile mark, and Devil’s Playground, which is at the 16-mile mark. Both of these mile-marker pit stops are great places to stretch your legs, take in the fresh mountain air, and get you and your crew pumped to see the summit.
In total, the lengthy expedition takes about three hours there and back. But it may take a smidge longer if you, like the rest of us, stop to take pictures (the elevation sign is a favorite spot for snapshots), spend time in the gift shop, or stroll atop the summit taking in the beautiful views. (Which you should absolutely do, because it’s what makes the drive!)
Walk Around Historic Manitou Springs
Known by locals as Colorado Springs’ eclectic neighbor to the west, Manitou Springs is a quaint location for a wide-range of activities, from sight-seeing, shopping, and lots of outdoor fun. Free parking and shuttles are available year-round, which makes it a lot easier for you and the family to explore the magic of this budget-friendly mountain town. Just be sure to bring your face mask and wear comfortable footwear and some sunscreen: On average, the city gets about 250 days of sunshine per year, making it the perfect place to stroll and soak in the sun. (Though it’s just as picturesque in winter too!) Walk about the art galleries and specialty boutiques downtown, stop by the Manitou Outpost for unique gifts, listen to some live music, or cool off and take a sip of the effervescent water from one of the many mineral springs that populate the scenic city.
Only 6.5 miles from Colorado Springs, Manitou is chock full of historical hot spots and must-see places to play like the Cliff Dwellings, the Cave of the Winds, and the Incline — just to name a few. And if you’re feeling more adventurous and outdoorsy, there are plenty of hiking trails, parks, and nature spots in Manitou that will satisfy your need to connect with Mother Nature. It’s true, there’s so much to do in Manitou, you’ll want to add another day to your trip!
Miramont Castle Museum
Ghost Town Museum
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Open Year 'round
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