Let us be the first to congratulate you on a great choice of visiting our corner of the country. The southwest is rich with culture and history, filled with an abundance of nature, and all around a wonderful place. But what exactly should you do on your trip? Below are some important considerations to help you get an idea of what your trip might look like.
1. When are you coming?
Coming in winter? Bring warm layers. Coming in summer? Still bring layers!
2. What do you want to get out of your trip?
3. What is your fitness level?
If you are coming from sea level, keep in mind the Southwest, particularly mountainous regions, sit at a high altitude. This means your body will be receiving less oxygen than its used to, which may affect how you go about your day. In order to help reduce the affects of altitude, make sure to rest up before arriving, drink lots of caffeine- free fluids, and take breaks while partaking in physical activities.
4. What is my adventure level?
The Southwest is filled with different adventures. Remember, age is just a number that only affects your adventure level if you choose to let it!
5. Does whitewater rafting fit into your itinerary so far?
Contrary to what some people might assume, the Southwest is filled with rivers. In Durango alone, you could easily join a trip and get to six different trips within a few hours drive. Whatever you decide, Durango rafting is unique and each river offers adventurers different thrills at different times of the year.
6. Does nature fit into your itinerary?
A great way to see wildlife and wild flowers specifically is on a Jeep trail tour. These tours go along National Forest Access roads, often bumpy, twisting dirt roads you would not what your vehicle to go down. If you choose a ghost town tour, you’re going to go visit long abandoned towns such as Animas Forks, Minnie Gulch, Sunnyside, or other similar places. You might even get to go up one of the passes, such as Cinnamon Pass, which tops out around 13,000 feet. If you’re lucky, you might actually see a bald eagle, a bear, or a moose!
7. Want to learn a thing or two?
Like mentioned above, the Southwest is rich in both culture and history. You can go on a guided tour of Mesa Verde, stop at Chaco Canyon, or check out Chimney Rock.
8. Want to experience it all?
With so much to do in the area, it can be tricky to try and fit the entire southwest experience into just a few days. Rafting, hiking, train rides, visits to the museums, eating your way across town, and relaxing are all accessible, and possible. Your best option is to figure out your budget, time frame, and the activities you want to complete to help plan.
Or, head down to the Durango Welcome Center. The staff there is friendly and ready to answer all your questions. They can recommend you to restaurants, activities, or other companies that would be best suited to help you.
9. Are you on a tight budget?
If you’re on a tight budget, it’s especially important to figure out exactly what you want to do before booking activities. You may find it helpful to rank each activity so you know which one you’re willing to spend money on. Look on TripAdvisor to see what other visitors suggest. They will be able to tell you if a certain activity is worth it, or if there is a certain company to avoid.
Of course, there is always the great outdoors that will provide you with cheap, if not free, entertainment. Take a hike or go on a bike ride. Durango has miles of trails, all of which are easily accessible. Consider going to one of the many area parks and eating a packed lunch instead of going to an expensive restaurant. There are countless things to do. All you need to do is investigate a little.
10. Is this really a great place to visit?
Who wouldn’t want to come to a beautiful place filled with kind, fun-loving people? Depending on where you’re coming form, the Southwestern United States might feel like going abroad. If you’re not convinced, just ask around your neighborhood. You may be surprised with how many people have visited and loved it! If you need more information and advice on your trip planning, Mild to Wild Rafting and Jeep Trail Tours is an excellent resource to get the most out of your trip. The trip consultants are here to help you book activities, as well as offer suggestions for food and lodging. We can be reached at (970) 247- 4789 everyday of the week. We look forward to helping you plan an unforgettable trip.