This 42-mile rail-to-trail route between Glenwood Springs and Aspen is beloved by hikers and bikers, who enjoy the diverse mix of terrain—from sagebrush to ponderosa forest to ranchlands to jagged mountains—plus the Roaring Fork River, your companion for nearly the entire trail’s journey. There’s not one place on the Rio Grande Trail that doesn’t have a stunning view of the surrounding mountains. But if 42 miles is a bit aggressive for your taste, zero in on the 7-mile stretch between Aspen and Woody Creek. And when you’re done, toast your achievement at the Woody Creek Tavern, the funky former haunt of Hunter S. Thompson. Strong margaritas are the specialty here, so grab a seat, scan the photos and posters of the gonzo journalist, and exhale.
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