Colorado is among the most diverse and beautiful states in the United States. When you visit Colorado, you will experience various landscapes and features like sandstone monoliths, open plains, and rustic mountains.
There are also a lot of activities you can indulge in like hiking, mountain climbing, skiing, visiting museums and art galleries, and enjoying the diverse cuisines. These activities are spread throughout all seasons, making Colorado a great place to visit any time of the year.
However, like when visiting any other city or country, you have to plan carefully to ensure you fully enjoy your stay in Colorado. Some of the things you need to do include:
Plan for the dryness
Colorado is generally dry because of the high altitude and absence of large water bodies like lakes, oceans, and major rivers. The dryness can cause skin dryness, dry eyes, dehydration, and worsen respiratory diseases like asthma and bronchitis.
Therefore, when planning your Colorado trip, ensure you carry a humidifier, nasal drops, moisturizer, and lip balm. Throughout your stay in the state, you should also hydrate as much as possible by having water with you always.
You should also avoid taking long hot showers or using harsh and scented cleaning and moisturizing products as they could dry your skin more.
Avoid visiting during the peak skiing season
Colorado is a great place over the winter for people who love skiing. Most of them go to world-class skiing resorts, but others prefer the less popular skiing sites, especially with the family or a group of friends. They are also more affordable and offer a better terrain for advanced-level skiers.
Because of the high number of skiers visiting the state, winter might not be the best time to visit. The high number of tourists makes commodities expensive and hard to find accommodation, especially in hotels around the mountain.
Prepare for the sunlight
Because of the elevation of the state, it receives over 300 days of sunlight a year, and the sun is usually intense throughout the day. The likelihood of getting sunburn increases in high altitudes, so you should pack your sunscreen with a high SPF, protection hats, and sunglasses.
While the sun is present throughout the day, it gets hottest at around noon. Therefore, ensure you plan your activities such that your outdoor activities are in the morning and afternoon. You can plan to visit cool places like the Manitou Springs Arcade or the Garden of the Gods Trading post at noon.
Plan on getting a car
One of the saddest things you have to deal with after arriving in the city is transportation. Public transport is not common, and you have to figure out how to get around. One of the best and most convenient ways is to get a car for hire.
This way, you don’t have to pay for taxis every time you need to move around. When getting the car, choose depending on the areas you will travel to and how many people you want to move around.
You should rent a four-wheel drive or a front-wheel-drive with solid treads on tires during the winter. Any vehicle is good over the summer and seasons, but if you want to access close backcountry’s high clearance roads, you should consider getting an ATV or Jeep.
If you want to get to the mountains, there is an alternative to use private van transport, like Colorado Mountain Express, if you are from the Denver International Airport.
Reduce your alcohol intake
Colorado has a higher altitude than many states in the US, making it easier to get drunk quickly, even after drinking a small amount of alcohol.
Also, beer in Colorado, especially in the Pikes Peak, usually have a higher ABV, almost thrice the amount, than beers found in the liquor store. All the beers have the ABV indicated on the can, allowing you to choose the best depending on your alcohol preference.
Pack a variety of clothes
While the state receives sunlight most days of the year, there are still some weather changes throughout the day in different seasons. Therefore, ensure you pack clothes for all types of weather, like sweaters for the morning weather and light t-shirts for around noon.
If you are visiting around June or July, ensure you also bring rain jackets because it rains mainly in the afternoons. You should also bring hiking boots and backpacks to ensure comfortable hiking along the mountains.
Take it slow
Take a few days to rest and get used to the dry, thin, and low-oxygen Colorado air. Doing a lot of activities like hiking or sports immediately could cause your health complications.
For the first days, start by touring the Chill Chaser zones, visiting the museums and art studios, and trying out new restaurants. You should also avoid caffeine, alcohol, and marijuana for the first 24 hours after arrival.
You should also eat foods rich in carbohydrates and potassium to help replenish your energy levels and alleviate altitude sickness, especially before going up the mountains. Experts also recommend staying away from sodium-rich foods as they can cause dehydration.
Before starting your journey to Colorado, research all the activities and weather conditions to ensure you pack accordingly and prepare yourself psychologically. When going to Colorado, the most important thing is to be ready for the thin, dry air and high sunlight exposure by having water with you always, applying sunscreen, and wearing hats and sunglasses.
You should also give yourself a few days off and plan for your means of transport depending on the season and where you want to visit.