Welcome to Telluride Colorado!
Interactive Map of the San Juan Skyway.
Click a ‘Star’ on the map below or a ‘Colored Line Segment’ to learn more about that region of the skyway.
Places To Stay In Telluride Colorado
Peaks Resort and Spa
The list of reasons you will want to stay at this resort will be endless!
The Place to Stay In Telluride Colorado
Your ‘Classic’ accommodation in Telluride
Peaks Resort and Spa
The Spa at the peaks resort and spa in telluride is your rocky mountain respite.
Things To Do Near Telluride Colorado
Telluride – It’s not just for Skiing anymore!
Bridal Veil Falls, for example, runs at the eastern end of the canyon. At 365 feet, it is the longest free-falling waterfall in Colorado. Running through the town, the San Miguel River originates high in the mountains, drops more than 7,000 feet, converges with the Dolores River and, ultimately, flows into the Colorado River. Originally home of the Ute tribe, the San Miguel river and an abundance of wildlife were their sustaining resources. The first people to recognize the unearthly beauty of the area, they called it the “Valley of Hanging Waterfalls.”
The Spanish making their way north through Mexico and New Mexico in the late 1700s were the next ones to arrive and see the beauty of the Rocky Mountains that they named the San Juan Mountains. Starting as a silver mining camp on the San Miguel River in the late 1800’s, gold mining followed in the mountains above the town.
In the 1890s Butch Cassidy’s started his bank robbery career in Telluride and the New Sheridan Hotel was built in 1895, becoming its most famous landmark. Just eight blocks wide and twelve blocks long, the town contains an architectural legacy of Victorian homes popular during the late 1800s. By the mid-1950’s. the gold mining boom had become a bust, mines were shuttered and residents moved on. Because of its significant role in the history of the American West, Telluride was designated a National Historic Landmark District in 1964. Soon afterwards, Telluride discovered that it was surrounded by “white gold” and opened the Telluride ski resort in 1972. In 1975, the Coonskin Lift was constructed, creating access to the ski area directly from Telluride. In 1979, Ron Allred and the Benchmark Corporation of Avon, Colorado, purchased controlling interest in the ski area, spurring development of the town and Mountain Village perched above Telluride at 9500 feet. A regional airport was completed in 1985; the Sunshine Express high-speed quad chairlift was constructed for the 1986-87 ski season; and a luxurious hotel and spa, The Peaks Resort & Spa (formerly the Doral Hotel), was opened along with the Telluride golf course in the Mountain Village in 1992. The town’s colorful Victorian-era homes, clapboard storefronts and historic buildings soon would become part of a unique town setting with boutiques, art galleries, gourmet restaurants and much more.
Mountain Village, with its European-style architecture, modern amenities, ski-in/ski-out hotels and sweeping views of the surrounding peaks, has evolved as the perfect complement to historic Telluride. Telluride and Mountain Village are linked by a spectacular, 13-minute ride on a free gondola. Telluride consistently wins the accolades of magazines like Conde Nast Traveler. Not only is it a top-tier ski town, somehow the town has managed to maintain its marvelous unhurried character, authenticity, charms, and low-key vibe even though it offers everything that travelers are looking for. A December 2018 Conde Nast Traveler article, “Why Telluride Keeps Being Named the Best U.S. Ski Town,” unveils some highlights of why people keep coming back. The author of the article tells us that the mountain is unmarred by crowds and hoopla and the town as a whole manages to “fly under the radar”. Six times over seven years Conde Nast Traveler has listed Telluride as a “top ski destination.” Free of crowds and ostentation, without fanfare Telluride reveals but doesn’t flaunt its qualities. Telluride’s ski resort also has been on Forbes’ “top ski destinations” list for a number of years, most recently among “The Top 10 Ski Resorts In North America For 2019.” In addition to snowfall, terrain, and crowds, Telluride is a winner for the town’s ambience. According to Forbes, Telluride is an “alpha” when it comes to top-tier ski resort towns. “Telluride, for instance, sits at a high elevation and has good amounts of terrain that face north, which helps them preserve snow and stay cold even when the spring sun gains the upper hand from winter”. The author cites how well Telluride’s skiing serves skiers of varying abilities and all visitors for its restaurants, shops, bars and other attractions. And from another perspective, CNN Business named Telluride No. 2 on its “10 great destinations for combining work and play.” It’s easy to understand why Telluride has been continually ranked the #1 Ski Resort in North America by readers of Condé Nast Traveler. While in town or after returning home, skiers rave about uncrowded slopes, no lift lines and the exceptional terrain for all levels and abilities of skiers.
The destination also offers everything else that outdoor enthusiasts could ask for from snowshoeing and Nordic skiing to sleigh rides and bike tours. Telluride also is like few other places in summer months. Families can float down the San Miguel River through town on inner tubes while cyclists and hikers head off in every direction from town. And all visitors can move in and out of downtown Telluride and Mountain Village with beautiful azure skies and peaks framing spectacular views. The variety of outdoor activities near Telluride is mind-boggling. Hikers and nature lovers have choices of an abundance of scenic nature trails, jeep roads, and less-traveled paths. When the snow melts, the San Juan Mountains provide terrain perfect for biking. Challenging trails from the town lead to old mining roads and basins high above box canyon. For longer, moderate trails, mountain bikers can follow and connect with several former railroad tracks throughout the valley and to the west. Road riding is also popular along the San Juan Skyway. For the more adventurous, the jagged peaks and wall faces of the San Juan Mountains provide a variety of climbing and bouldering routes. From classic routes on Ophir Wall to moderate climbs on Pipeline to the Via Ferrata, the climbing is diverse and plentiful. For a warmup, check out Adventure Rock, a manmade climbing boulder in Mountain Village. Telluride’s mining heritage has left a legacy of jeep roads that provide access to some of the area’s highest mountain passes, beautiful vistas, alpine lakes, waterfalls, wildflowers, ghost towns and mining ruins. Visitors return again and again to explore the area’s many off-road routes such as Bridal Veil Falls, Last Dollar Road, Ophir Pass, Alta Lakes or Black Bear Pass. The same terrain and its trails provide routes for ATV tours. Horseback riding from Telluride into the San Juan Mountains is one of the area’s most memorable experiences. Near Telluride anglers will find some of the finest trout streams, lakes and ponds in the Rocky Mountains.
Every spring, when Telluride’s snowpack flows into streams and rivers visitors can take rafting trips down the San Miguel River or the Dolores River or through the Black Canyon of the Gunnison River. Visitors to Telluride throughout the year enjoy unique calendars of festivals and events. In addition to the well-known Bluegrass and Telluride Film Festival, visitors during summer months and other times discover lesser-known events that are always fresh and inviting. The town’s history and evolution from a gritty mining town to a mecca of arts, entertainment and skiing, and the basis for its designation as a Certified Colorado Creative District, always are near at hand. A visit to the beautiful Telluride Historical Museum provides visitors with several useful guides to exploring the town’s history. People drawn to Telluride, including many luminaries, love its small scale and options for serene walks right from town. For example, the well-maintained River Trail, which turns into the Idarado Legacy Trail, an easy route leading to the historic Idarado Mill. This trail provides breathtaking views of the end of the box canyon. Another easy two-and-a-half-mile path leads to Bridal Veil Falls, Colorado’s highest free-falling waterfall. Intrepid hikers can climb switchbacks to the top of the 365-foot falls for access to additional trails in the Bridal Veil Creek Basin. Visitors to town can get a bird’s-eye view of the densely forested San Miguel River Valley by taking a gondola ride to Mountain Village and from there head for hikes, mountain-bike trails or rock climbing. Afterwards, back downtown, the ornate Sheridan Opera House might offer a rock concert or ski film. The town and Mountain village have a wealth of accommodation options, all of which emphasize the health and wellbeing of guests. From Telluride, a short scenic drive along the San Juan Skyway leads to Placerville, then on Hwy 62 over Dallas Divide to Ridgway set in beautiful Uncompahgre Valley. The drive from Dallas Divide to Ridgway offers panoramic views of the Mount Sneffels Range and jagged ridges of the Uncompahgre Wilderness. Another alternative trip from Telluride is a 65- mile drive north through Ridgway to Montrose. Montrose is an excellent base camp for exploring the Black Canyon of Gunnison National Park and the Curecanti National Recreation Area. Telluride’s four seasons of adventure is easy to get to from two destination airports: Montrose Regional Airport (MTJ), a scenic 65-mile drive away, and Telluride Regional Airport (TEX), just 10 minutes from town.
Articles Relating to the ‘Town of Telluride’
When spring and summer arrive in the San Juan Mountains, wildflower hunting reveals wave after wave of floral beauty. In the high country, wildflowers peak between mid-July and mid-August. For example, a spectacular display of wildflowers is in full bloom in American Basin by mid-July. Bluebells growing in large clumps seem to like American Basin and also Animus Forks.
Telluride is an extraordinary mountain town. The more people learn about its assets and creativity, especially in these challenging times, the more it seems to offer much more than simply astonishing natural beauty.
From Cortez the Skyway follows Hwy 145 for about 12 miles to Dolores. Dolores was a major railroad town along the Rio Grande Southern route between Durango and Ridgway. Today visitors can tour an exact replica of the original train depot on Railroad Avenue, now the Rio Grande Southern Museum.