Visiting Colorado Four Corners Area

Over 170,000 acres in the Southwest corner of Colorado is now protected land under the Canyons of the Ancients National Monument, where 1,000’s of communities of our Pueblo Ancestors lived. The visitor center is located just West of Delores at the Anasazi Heritage Center, which includes a research facility with over 3 million artifacts and samples. In addition, the museum inside the facility is quite impressive. The half mile paved walkway with an elevation gain of 200 feet leads to the Escalante Pueblo located on top of the hill behind the visitor center, which provides a spectacular 360-degree view of the La Plata Mountains, Montezuma Valley, McPhee Reservoir, and Mesa Verde.

Just North of Pagosa Springs at the foot of a mountain pass is Treasure Falls which cascades 105 feet into Falls Creek in route to the San Juan River. The top portion of the falls is visible from the pullout, but to get a view of the entire falls, one must hike a quarter-mile up a switchback trail with an elevation gain of 300 feet. At the end of the trail is a wooden bridge which suspends over Falls Creek about 25-feet from the base of the falls. Be prepared to get a little wet from the mist.

In the Southwest corner of Colorado is 236 miles of nothing but inspiring beauty, known as the San Juan Skyway with an elevation range of 6,200 feet to just over 11,000 feet. The skyway starts and ends in the towns of Cortez and Durango and travels North through the San Juan National Forest, where the three highways which make up the skyway takes one through steep winding mountain passes and down through the valleys just below impressive mountain peaks which soar some 14,000 feet into the clear blue skies. With the segment of highway between Ouray and Silverton known as the “Million Dollar Highway”, one will see why this part is really priceless, with sheer mountain walls on one side and straight drop-offs on the other side displaying the beauty of alpine peaks and the lush valley below. As a bonus, the road passes through the old mining towns of Rico, Telluride, Ouray, and Silverton, where each town hosts many historic buildings as well as activities, shopping and dining.

Telluride sits just a few miles off the byway in a box canyon in Colorado’s Rocky Mountains where some of the old mining Victorian homes are still standing with a walking trail along the San Miguel River. High above Telluride is the world-famous Telluride Ski and Golf Resort. Other than Ouray being an old mining town, they are a few treats for visitors passing through. The Cascade Waterfalls at the end of 8th street showcases a spectacular water fall dropping over 100-feet created from snow melt from the Cascade Mountains. A quarter mile steep and rough trail leads to the base of the falls, where one can walk under and behind the falls. At the other end of town is Box Canyon Falls. After a short 400-foot walk, the trail enters the narrow box canyon where a grated walkway next to the cliff wall leads 100 feet to the back of the canyon where the 85-foot water fall can be viewed. Down a fifty-foot staircase takes one to the base of the falls. Silverton at an elevation of 9,318 feet is located in the valley of the Southern end of the San Juan Mountains and is very rich in its history as the old mining town of the early 19th century.

In the late 1800’s what is known is Cliff Palace was discovered by Wetherill and his son-n-law. Over the next 18 years visitors to this dwelling carried off artifacts, burnt roof timbers for campfires and defaced some of the walls. For whatever reason, there is no mention of any destruction at the site known as Balcony House which was discovered a few years earlier by prospector’s led by S.E. Osborn. In 1906 these two locations and 1,000’s of acres became protected as Mesa Verde National Park. These two locations along with Long House which was excavated in mid-19th century can only be viewed up close by park ranger guides.

Entering the park, one must drive about 18 miles to reach the 6-mile Cliff Palace loop, with the first 15 miles over a steep winding road with switchbacks that leads over and around Mesa’s and Questa’s. Along the way are several overlooks for spectacular views of Mancos valley, Montezuma valley, Geologic overlook and Park Point which is the highest point in the park at 8,572 feet. A.2-mile walk leads one to an overlook with a 360-degree view of the Parks Mesa’s and Questa’s with mountains in the far distance. From here one can see natural structures in the four states that make up the four corners region.

As the highway passes by the Far View Lodge the road becomes level along the Chapin Mesa top, where the Far View community sites are located, which was the most populated with 50 villages within a half square mile. Here a one-mile level loop trail leads one to the Pipe Shrine House, Town Center, Coyote Village, Megalithic House, Far View Tower, and the community reservoir.

The six-mile Mesa Top loop drive has many stops where one can walk a short distance to the Pit House, Mesa top sites, Sun Pueblo, a 300-yard walk to the overlook of Square Tower, and Sun Temple which also provides an excellent view of Cliff Palace sitting in the alcove across the valley.

With Mesa Verde having over 600 alcoves with the best preserved and most notable cliff dwellings in North America makes these sites the most popular. Along the six-mile Cliff Palace loop drive one can reach the Cliff Palace guided tour, an overlook of Balcony House and the Balcony House guided tour. Cliff Palace the largest cliff dwelling with 150 rooms and 23 kivas can be viewed up close by a quarter mile round trip hike with an elevation change of 100 feet. With just 40 rooms, Balcony House is considered a medium size cliff dwelling; however, to reach the site is the most challenging where the quarter mile loop takes one up a 32-foot ladder, through a small 12-foot tunnel, an 18-inch wide crawl through with a 5-foot ladder and to exit the dwelling up a 60-foot open cliff wall with small stone steps and two-ten foot ladders.

The 12-mile Wetherill road with steep grades and switchbacks over and around the mesas will come to an end at the Long House site, the 2nd largest cliff dwelling. The guided tour is a 2.25-mile round trip hike with the first mile being over a pretty much level asphalt walkway and a steep elevation change of 130 feet along the cliff wall to reach the dwelling.

Unfortunately, the 3rd largest cliff dwelling, Spruce Tree House can no longer be viewed up close due to the possibility of falling boulders from the cliff walls; however, an excellent view of the dwelling can be seen from just behind the museum.

In addition, they are many hiking trails which lead to other ruins and smaller dwelling for one’s enjoyment. With a doubt, to really experience what Mesa Verde has to offer, one needs to plan on at least two full days.

Things About Las Vegas Nightclubs You Didn’t Know

If there is one thing about Las Vegas is that there are secrets that their clubs keep. Actually, there are quite a number of them, and some of the most favorite and shocking ones are about to be shared with those who are reading this. This is the idea of club insiders so visitors can enjoy Las Vegas and have the most unforgettable experience. Some may think that they know everything they need to know about Sin City club scenes, but for sure, they will be surprised.

Las Vegas Clubs’ Secret: The Bathroom Attendant

There is a secret that lies in every club restroom – all bathrooms in Vegas come with a bathroom attendant. This bathroom attendant is not the secret itself, but rather the things he/she can do for guests.

Some may be too naive to think that the only job of an attendant is to see to it that the bathroom remains neat and tidy, and it definitely is. However, there is a secret in their hidden stashes. The first is for the guys.

Men’s Room

Guys can get a number of fringe benefits from the men’s room. When they give a tip to the attendant, they can get mints, cigarettes and cologne. Some hidden cabinets hold signature cologne. They can get a spray of these when giving a tip.

Attendants also offer mouthwash, condoms and Cuba cigars (some clubs even have cigars from Montecristo and Cohiba, which are highly recommended). In addition, if their cell phone has a low battery charge, they can ask the bathroom attendant to charge it for them while they party. They should not forget, though, to tip them.

Ladies’ Room

The secret stash of the ladies’ room is comparable to that of the men. Probably the best amenity of the club’s ladies’ bathroom is the shoes. When the ladies are tired from standing or dancing all night, they just have to go to the ladies’ bathroom and tell the attendant that they want to purchase some shoes. Majority of nightclubs have different options so they will certainly find a pair to fit their style.

For instance, Marquee offers both ballet flats and flip-flops. Some may find ballet flats to be a better choice since they give some form of protection, if ever someone steps on their toes. Moreover, they can easily fold up in a purse, making them perfect for another night out. These shoes sell for about $15 to $20. When feet are in pain, this is not at all a bad deal.

Why It’s Great to Take a Holiday on the Wonderful Isle of Wight

If you like to stay at home in the UK for your family holidays but the idea of getting on a boat and crossing the water still appeals, you could do worse than spend some time on the Isle of Wight, sometimes referred to as Britain’s Sunshine Isle. When you are on the Island you are blessed with that feeling of having left the rat race behind, and yet you are still in England immersed in the familiarity of your culture, currency and cuisine.

But the Isle of Wight is far from being a mere extension of the mainland, albeit cut off by a small expanse of sea. On the contrary, it has a “feel” all of its own and a vibe that belongs perhaps to simpler and more innocent times. Those who are of a certain age may be overcome by a certain sense of nostalgia when they step off the ferry or the hovercraft for the first time and visit some of the shops and arcades along the seafront. And yet the Island is by no means stuck in the 1960s, and if you care to look around it has pretty much everything that the rest of us have come to know – it just somehow manages to keep everything in its place and retain a sense of perspective.

A unique blend of history and modernity

The largest town is Ryde, on the north-east coast, and it is here that the Island’s unique blend of history and modernity is at its most evident. When you leave the esplanade and climb the steep streets which head back inland you will encounter an interesting range of small, independent shops interspersed with others belonging to some of the big chains with which we are all familiar. Some of the pubs have a traditional seafront ambience whilst there are others more likely to appeal to the younger market.

As you head around the coast you will happen upon the beautiful marine community of Bembridge before arriving at Sandown, with its pier and coastal walk fronted by some of the Island’s larger hotels. From there it is a short drive, or for those of a more energetic bent a mere walk, to Shanklin with its seaside shops and crazy golf, and then to the quaint resort of Ventnor which rests at the foot of a sheer slope which is ever so slightly scary when attempting to negotiate it by car.

Hotels and popular holiday parks

Over at West Wight are the resorts of Yarmouth and Freshwater, out on their own but with Alum Bay and the famous Needles located between. It is always a joyous experience to spend some time at the Landmark Attraction (previously known as the Needles Pleasure Park) and, for the courageous of spirit, to take the chairlift over the cliffs and down to the beach.

The county town of the Isle of Wight is Newport, the only fairly large town on the Island which isn’t situated by the sea. Here once again the shopping experience is one where culture meets progress and the store chains compete with the more traditional outlets for the custom of locals and visitors alike.

The Isle of Wight boasts a number of quite comfortable hotels, a great many smaller bed and breakfast establishments and several popular holiday parks comprising lodges and caravans. It’s a great place to get away to for a week or two, or even just a weekend.