(Closed) Eloping to Rocky Mountain National Park need advice

posted 10 years ago in Denver
Post # 3
121 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: June 2009

From a legal point of view, a few tidbits:  marriage licenses are $30, and are good for 30 days.  You do not have to be a CO resident.  You and the Fiance have to show up with ID, and swear you’re not related to each other (I believe CO does allow 1st cousins to marry.)  Also, you do NOT need an officiant—CO allows the bride and groom to self-sanctify, which means you and the Fiance sign the license, and that’s it.  You’re married.  (If you do use an officiant, it’s the usual guidelines of who can officate…which doesn’t really matter, since we had a friend ‘marry’ us, then the two of us just signed the license.)  Awesome.  Something to think about if you’d like to bring along a friend to perform, instead of a stranger.

All of RMNP is beautiful, but my favorite part to hike on the east side is Wild Basin.  I particularly love the Finch Lake Trail—it will take you through an almost 30-year old burn (burns recover VERY slowly in CO) which gives you some astounding views, all around, but also of Long’s Peak (14’er).  If you take the Peak-to-Peak highway from Estes to Denver, you might be intersted in stopping at Brainerd Lake Recreation Area, Nederland (Hessie TH, Fourth of July TH) or Rollinsville (East Portal TH) to do some day hiking.

September is lovely–second or third week is usually the aspen peak.  Varies a lot throughout the state, though, depending on altitude and aspect (direction the hillside is facing).  RMNP does not have a lot of aspend stands, so if you are interested in the fall colors, you might want to consider heading out I-70 towards one of the ski resorts for a few nights.  The world’s largest hot springs is in Glenwood, CO, about 3.5 hours from Denver.  It’s nice, but not rustic—-two giant olympic sized pools with hot mineral water.  It is right on the way to Aspen, though.  For a more rustic hot springs, try Hot Sulphur Springs, near Winter Park (another ski resort)–they have 24 or so small tubs outside ranged up and down the hill.  My favorite is Strawberry Hot Springs in Steamboat (yet another ski resort, but not out I-70)–very rustic, in that there are 3 different temperature pools built into the rock, and how hot they are is deteremined by how much water from the adjacent river goes into each.  They also have VE”RY rustic camping, if you’re interested.  That’s about a 3-4 hour drive from denver.

You mentioned kayaking–not a lot of whitewater here by september.  All our whitewater is snowmelt, so May and June are the months it’s really going gangbusters.  The dam-controlled rivers are usually shut down by that point, too.  I believe August is when they close the dam that feeds the Arkansas, down south.  Still water, just depends on your level of kayaking skill and what you’re looking for.

What to see in Denver?  There’s a zoo (nothing super-special), Museum of Nature and Science (museum seems a bit dusty, but has an IMAX), Art Museum, History Museum, Museum of Modern Art.  Denver Center for Performing Arts (DCPA) is quite large and has 7 theaters, hosts national touring shows.  Ummmm….one of the state capital steps has a medalion for one mile above sea level.  The row of purple seats at Coors Field also mark the mile-high elevation (home plate is actually below street level).  There is a B-cycle (rental bike) hub at the City building (WEbb building) if you want to tool around town that way, with more bike stations planned for next year, I believe.  Santa Fe (street) Arts District hosts first fridays art walk every month—all the galleries have open houses.  Tattered Cover bookstore downtown in LoDo (lower downtown) is a booklover/browsers delight–three floors of nooks and crannies.

September is a good time for mountain biking.  You can try the front range Jefferson County (JeffCo) parks, or head out to Buffalo Creek–that’s a good area with some beginner friendly bike trails.  Golden is on your way, and has four bike shops—you could rent a bike there.

Post # 4
948 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: March 2010

Boulder is gorgeous with some great trails too around Flagstaff Mountain above the town.  I would spend part of a day at least part of a day there and see the Pearl Street Mall Area.  Lots of art, food, and people watching. 

Post # 5
751 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: May 2010

I booked Bella Cappelli for my wedding in May.  Christi was recommended highly by my venue.  I was just planning on getting her rates and then making a decision, but we had such a great conversation and she made me feel so comfortable that I booked her on the spot. 

I’ll try to remember to update you after the wedding since I get married before you do…

Post # 6
236 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: July 2010

Can I suggest my favorite date night for your stay in Denver?

Downtown Denver has the 16th Street mall, which you can google and see. On the mall is a restaurant called Marlowes. Great food, I try to sit at the bar as you will get your food fast and the bartenders are usually awesome. I like their chipotle penne, personally – but Fiance gets meat. With a couple drinks and tip we usually do about $45-50 in damage. Then if you go up the street from there you will see a barnes and noble in a “shopping area”. Above the barnes and noble is a movie theater and near it is a great hidden jazz club with views of the mall below. If you really want to get fancy, stay at the Brown Palace. Dinner prices at the Brown Palace’s Tavern are a little steep, though. And that might be putting it lightly.

Let me know what your budget is and I could probably suggest better things for you to do. Sorry I can’t help you with the Salon, I’ve never been there.

Post # 7
29 posts
  • Wedding: October 2010

you should come visit Boulder (only 30-40 minutes from downtown Denver, and 1/2 way from Denver to Estes Park)! It’s a slightly crunchy granola city, where the University of Colorado’s main campus is (take an hour and wander the grounds, they’re beautiful). We’ve also got Chautauqua park and The Celestial Seasonings tea factory is also in Boulder. I could go on and on if you want me to, it’s my adopted home town now 😀 Let me know if you want more details.

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