Give your Valentine a Unique Summer Adventure: A Heart-Revving Romance in the Colorado Rockies!

ATV near Estes Park

Sometimes the best way to experience an area is by asking a local what they like to do.  Andy Hitch is one Estes Park area local with some great ideas for experiencing the Colorado Rocky Mountains! Owner of Backbone Adventure Rental, Andy and his family live on property “nestled in the Colorado forest” near a beautiful trail system.  Backbone Adventure Rental was born out of their love for riding these trails, whether on an ATV, dirtbike, Jeep, or mountain bike.  When you venture into the backcountry on these trails, you’ll find unrivaled seclusion, stunning views, wildlife and good times.  You can even rent a Harley or Jeep to cruise through the canyons and over mountain passes like Trail Ridge Road (the highest paved road in the contiguous US) – just imagine how cool that would be! 

Estes Park has always been a popular destination for couples looking for romance in the Rocky Mountains.  With Valentine’s Day around the corner, Backbone Adventure Rental has you covered with a totally unique gift that will thrill both you, and your special someone.  How about presenting your Valentine with a summer Couples Getaway in the Colorado Rockies?  Here’s the special Backbone offers:

Couples Getaway – A romantic day and night in the mountains full of adventure.  Do something different for your baby.  We’ll make it a safe and comfortable experience.  We set everything up for you.  All you have to do is bring the food and meet us there.  We’ll run you through everything you need to know, and leave you for 24 hours.  We’ll only be a short ways away, camping ourselves.  Here’s what you get:

  •  1 or 2 machines of your choice, gassed and ready to ride
  • Tent for 2 (set up for you)
  • Clean cots, sleeping bags, and pillows
  • Fire pit (stocked with wood)
  • Table, grill, utensils, cooler, and 2 chairs
  • Water & coffee
  • Beautiful camp surroundings with very limited people, if any at all
  • $329

Backbone Adventure Rental takes pride in their customer oriented approach to business.  “We are very different from our competitors.  Rather than pack 30 people into one day, we prefer to deal with only one or two families [or groups], and it’s rare that we’ll allow more than one.  We like to focus our attention on you.  It’s not about making big money, it’s about customer service, enjoying what we do and offering you the best possible ATV ride and equipment,” Andy explains.  With Backbone Adventure Rental’s help, you’ll find the best views, advice on a wide variety of trails, a local’s account of the real backwoods of the Colorado Rockies, and quite possibly a sense of freedom like none other.  Be sure to visit their website for more incredible ideas for seeing Estes Park the way the locals do! 

Sometimes it is Pure Luck - Bobcat Sightings in RMNP


Bobcat in the snow

Being out in Rocky Mountain National Park on a nearly daily basis, I find you start to really appreciate how rare some moments can be.  One of those moments - that I get to experience only two or three times a year - is to see a bobcat, especially in the daylight.  Coyotes, bobcats, and even mountain lion juveniles start to disperse in the winter months.  If you are brave enough to head out in the park in the cold, you just might be the lucky enough to experience one of these rare sightings. 

This bobcat crossed in front of me while I was out on a Wildlife Tour.  If was calm and even spent a few moments sitting on top of a large rock, seemingly being polite enough to stick around while I assembled my camera setup.  It went into the bushes and tried to hunt for a while, and then unfortunately some folks pulled up, flung their car doors open and made a lot of noise.  The bobcat was spooked and headed into the woods.

So if you ever find yourself out in RMNP and have the fortune to sight one of these magnificent creatures, please be sure to move slowly and quietly.  Find a legal place to park, and you might just get to spend a few moments with one of the Park's illusive animal residents.

by Jared Gricoskie of Yellow Wood Guiding.  If you are intereste in going on your own Wildlife Tour in Rocky Mountain National Park, visit for more information.