Bellvue

Part of the Fort Collins-Loveland metro area, Bellvue is a tiny Front Range community with a big view of the Rockies.

The town itself consists of little more than a post office, a school and a church along the stunning Cache La Poudre-North Park Scenic Byway. This 101-mile road peaks at 10,276-foot Cameron Pass and passes rural North Park, a habitat for deer, elk, moose, black bears and mountain lions. The byway winds through the Cache la Poudre River canyon, once a corridor used by both American Indians and explorers.

Today, kayakers and anglers pursue their respective sports along the Poudre, Colorado's only federally designated National Wild and Scenic River. From its headwaters east of Greeley, the river descends 7,000 feet, providing some of the best whitewater rafting in Colorado.

Nearby wetlands in the Arapaho National Wildlife Refuge showcase first-rate views of migratory waterfowl against a splendid Rocky Mountain backdrop. Bellvue area guest ranches, B&Bs and rustic cabins offer varied lodging options, and the river corridor boasts hundreds of campsites. For more urban pursuits, neighboring Fort Collins features great shopping, extensive cultural activities and a wide array of dining options.

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