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West Elk Leaf Peeping in Gunnison, Crested Butte & Paonia

West Elk Leaf Peeping in Gunnison, Crested Butte & Paonia
4 days

Take a drive on through the largest aspen grove in the state at the height of fall color, indulge in some of the state's best eats and hike your days away in these towns.

Sustainability Activity

Help Maintain Public Lands:

The Crested Butte Conservation Corps (CBCC) maintains the public lands in and around the Crested Butte area. By donating to the CBCC, you will be supporting crews working in the backcountry six days a week.

Day 1
Activity

Take an Art Tour

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Stroll main street Gunnison and check out the art galleries to get a sense of the scenery in the area. Must-visits include the Open Your Eyes Gallery and the Gunnison Gallery.
Lunch

Firebrand Delicatessen

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Serves breakfast, lunch and coffee; deli, restaurant, grocery store. Read More
Activity

Go for a Drive

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Drive north on CO 135, 3.5 miles, then take a left onto Ohio Creek Road. You'll get to drive through the West Elk Wilderness area and see the iconic Castles. If you want to stretch your legs, check out Mill Creek Trail or Beaver Ponds.
Dinner

Garlic Mike's

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Garlic Mike’s, invites you to enjoy the finest Italian cuisine this side of New Jersey on the beautiful Gunnison River in Gunnison Colorado. Red-checked tablecloths, family friendly, outdoor dining... Read More
Activity

High Alpine Brewing Company

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Located in downtown Gunnison, Colorado surrounded by epic terrain that locals embrace all year round. Family owned and operated, Scott and Stacey started HABC as a way to rule world one... Read More

Lodging

The Inn at Tomichi Village

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The serene surroundings, and crisp mountain air make Tomichi Village the right choice for visitors searching for a combination of charm, peace and quiet, and a convenient location to explore... Read More

Day 2
Breakfast

Almont Resort

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Family owned since 1893, Almont Resort offers fireside and riverside dining, a full service cocktail lounge, and your choice of more than 20 cabins situated on the Gunnison River headwaters. Read More

Insider's Tip

The Reel Deal:

The Colorado Parks & Wildlife fishing app can help you discover 1,300 fishing locations, check conditions and regulations and more. Search CPW Fishing in the Apple App Store and on Google Play. 

Activity

Sink a Line

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To get your blood pumping, go Kokanee Salmon fishing on the Gunnison and East Rivers with Willowfly Anglers.
Lunch

Secret Stash

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Come taste for yourself why we have been voted Best Pizza in Crested Butte every year since 2002 when we opened!

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Activity

Hike the Afternoon Away

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Hike Upper Loop trails just outside of Crested Butte. These lightly trafficked routes will give you beautiful views and the chance to see some local wildlife.
Dinner

Sherpa's Cafe

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Authentic Himalayan cuisine. In a mission to share our love and culture, we opened Sherpa Cafe's door on July of 2010. Since then the Sherpa Café has been a Crested Butte cultural staple. Read More
Activity

Montanya Distillers

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Montanya Distillers is a Colorado craft distiller of award-winning rum, founded in 2008. The company moved its headquarters from Silverton, CO to Crested Butte, CO in May 2011. Stop by for a... Read More
Lodging

Elk Mountain Lodge

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Located 1 block from Elk Ave, fine restaurants, and unique shops and galleries, the Elk Mountain Lodge has become the premier hotel in downtown Crested Butte. Completely and beautifully renovated,... Read More
Day 3
Breakfast

McGill's At Crested Butte

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Enjoy homemade breakfasts such as french toast with real maple syrup, eggs benedict, and fresh baked biscuits. Read More

Insider's Tip

Picnic Lunch:

After breakfast, grab lunch to-go from Clark's Market and have a picnic during your Kebler Pass drive.

Activity

Drive Kebler Pass

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Just over the top of Kebler Pass lies the largest aspen grove in Colorado. To see it, take Whiterock Ave west out of Crested Butte. You won't be disappointed, and neither will your followers when they see all your fall photos.
Activity

Keep on Hiking

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Hike the Three Lakes Loop accessed from the Lost Lake Campground on Kebler pass. You can take Lost Lake Road #706 to the trailhead. This easy 2.8-mile trail offers views of a sapphire lake surrounded by golden aspens.
Dinner

The Living Farm Cafe

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Welcome to The Living Farm Café and Inn. We are one of the very few true farm-to-table restaurants in Colorado. Our café features farm-fresh and organic produce, meat, cheese and eggs from our... Read More

Activity

Taste Paonia's Wine

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Follow the West Elks AVA wine trail to discover some of Colorado's best wineries.
Lodging

Bross Hotel Bed and Breakfast

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The Bross Hotel is a graceful frontier hotel noted for its genuine hospitality located on the western slope of Colorado. The ten guest rooms all with private baths are appointed with beautiful... Read More

Day 4
Breakfast

Bross Hotel Bed and Breakfast

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The Bross Hotel is a graceful frontier hotel noted for its genuine hospitality located on the western slope of Colorado. The ten guest rooms all with private baths are appointed with beautiful... Read More

Activity

Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park

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No other canyon in North America combines the narrow opening, sheer walls, and startling depths offered by the Black Canyon of the Gunnison. Hiking and ranger-guided programs. Read More
Lunch

Pappy's Restaurant at Elk Creek Marina

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Come enjoy the beautiful view of Elk Creek Marina & Blue Mesa Lake from our patio dining area ! LIVE MUSIC SATURDAY NIGHTS! Casual dining open Memorial Day through Labor Day. Read More
Activity

Explore the Waters of Blue Mesa Reservoir

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Rent a kayak, canoe or stand-up paddleboard and make your way around the scenic Blue Mesa Reservoir.
Dinner

Twisted Fork

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Twisted Fork is the best place for fusion dining in Gunnison, Colorado. We serve everything from stir fry noodle bowls to burgers to Vietnamese tacos and fresh daily fish specials. Dietary... Read More

Activity

Gunnison Arts Center

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An 1880s centerpiece for visual, literary and performing arts year-round. Exhibition gallery, 75-seat theater and clay center. Enjoy our art exhibitions featuring regional and local artists.... Read More

Lodging

Blue Mesa Outpost

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Camp with us at 7,777 feet! Each of our accommodations envelope you with gorgeous views of Blue Mesa Reservoir and the surrounding Rocky Mountains of Gunnison, Colorado. Our cabins, tent sites,... Read More