Explore Colorado: San Isabel National Forest

San IsabelSo I mentioned earlier that for our anniversary Cory and I rented a little mountain cabin where we spent a long weekend. We didn’t want a super long drive, although Gunnison is on our list and looks amazing, so we chose to head down to the San Isabel National Forest just south of Cañon City. We queued up the gps and were on our way. The gps on the car had a longer drive time than the phone, so we went with the phone.

The Road

Turns out the more direct route drives straight up some treacherous mountain roads that happened to be covered in thick snow and ice that evening. It was harrowing the say the least. But we made it, and it was an exceptionally beautiful drive. Except when we got to the address the gps had flagged, it didn’t look like the pictures. And the fence was closed. And it had a sign that said, and I quote, “Trespassers will be shot, survivors will be shot again.” We were lost. I reluctantly told Cory that on the AirBnb site the owner had left explicit instructions on how to get to the cabin but I hadn’t written them down, because, you know, I’m an idiot. We hadn’t had cell phone service in about an hour and were not willing to go back over the mountain roads so we headed back the way the car gps told us to go and hoped we’d get service on our way. It took over 40 miles but we finally ended up in Florence (home of the Federal Supermax Prison) and had enough service to look up the correct directions. We also emailed family to let them know where we were going to be, having neglected that previously and realizing we were going to be way out in the boonies. We headed back, our easy 2 1/2 hour drive having turned into 6, with our spirits surprisingly high.


The directions were clear and concise and got us to the cabin easily, go figure. Anyway, we finally arrived and the rest of our weekend was perfect. Except when Cory mentioned, moments before falling asleep, that it reminded him of Cabin in the Woods and then I couldn’t sleep the entire night because I thought every noise was a crazed murderer and we were going to die and nobody would ever find our bodies.

Anniversary Trip

The mountains

The area is gorgeous. The views from the cabin were amazing. Mountains all around and true seclusion. We made all of our meals and played cards and games and talked and did a puzzle (although I bought a 1000 piece one so obviously we didn’t finish) and cozied up in front of the wood stove with the pups.

7 years and going strong

Our first full day we went on a long walk around the area. It was warm and beautiful. The second day there was a snow storm. It was so amazing to sit in front of the large picture windows and see the snow come down in it’s purest form. Our last day we couldn’t help but take advantage of all that fresh powder and went snowshoeing straight out of the front door. We made our way down into a valley and back up the hill. Layla finally got used to her little boots and loved running around in snow that was taller than her. She followed tracks and was just blissfully happy. Penny ended up in Cory’s coat. It was the perfect end to a really wonderful and relaxing trip.


Spoiled Dog

We can’t wait to head back when it’s warmer to explore some of the trails we saw on the drive. Plus, there is so much else to do in that area, including some pretty amazing white water rafting in Royal Gorge.

It might be a little overlooked when there are so many mountainous areas in Colorado, but I think it’s a great destination. An easy drive from Denver, and some place you should definitely check out!



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