Two bathers soak in the steamy waters of a hot-springs pool at Avalanche Ranch near Redstone, Colorado. In the background, a snowcapped peak rises above the floating steam.

Avalanche Ranch

Just an hour’s drive from Glenwood Springs and Aspen, and only 30 minutes from Carbondale lies Redstone. This historical hamlet is ringed by rugged red cliffs that lend to its nickname, The Ruby of the Rockies. As you wind past the rushing Crystal River, by the towering peak of Mount Sopris, you’ll come across your rustic getaway, Avalanche Ranch.

While Avalanche Ranch is tucked in a truly tranquil setting, it has more to offer than relaxation. In summer, hop in a canoe to paddle across the on-site pond or drop a line to catch some glimmering rainbow trout. Bump, set and spike on the sand-volleyball court or play a few rounds of pingpong or badminton. Come autumn, the shimmering aspen trees that stretch across the mountainsides turn a brilliant shade of gold. It’s the perfect backdrop to wander the nearby apple orchard to pick some sweet treats, sip on cider and munch on sugar-coated donuts. End your night with a blazing campfire or dip your toes in their mineral-rich geothermal hot springs, open year-round. 

What makes it special?

Here, you can achieve peak wellness with all the serene amenities available to guests. Step into one of their three steaming hot springs and spend an evening gazing up at the sparkling Milky Way. Or book a massage, where expert therapists will melt away any aches or pains from the previous day’s hike. You could even sign up for a yoga class right on-site, where you’ll spend an hour finding your Zen with some soothing, stretchy flows.

The most Colorado thing about this place

It’s gotta be your old-school Colorado living quarters. You’ll feel like a true pioneer when you settle into your chuck wagon, complete with a cushy full-size bed and toasty propane heater. It makes for cozy evenings — even in the middle of winter when snowflakes fall outside your wagon window. Plus, this is glamping at its finest with a fan, coffee maker and even a barbecue grill right on your little porch. And a short walk away, you’ll hear the cascading water of the natural hot springs — open only to overnight guests after 5pm so you can soak for as long as you please.

A weary traveler sits on a bed beneath a sunflower-yellow, wood-paneled curved ceiling at Avalanche Ranch near Redstone, Colorado.

Top sensory encounter you’ll experience

Sing your heart out by the crackling campfire on Wednesday and Saturday nights all summer long. Resident jam-leader, Cowboy Steve welcomes guests to gather ’round for soulful songs and gooey s’mores. Bring your own instruments to join the band and get in on this down-home Western experience.

Quirkiest thing to expect

It’s called Avalanche Ranch for a reason — farm animals roam the property! Visit the kooky barnyard chickens, fluffy sheep, and adorable donkey and llama, and take some time to learn a bit about the region’s fauna. You can even saddle up on a horse with nearby Out West Guides and let your noble steed lead you through the rocky dirt trails with soaring Rocky Mountains as your backdrop.

Our favorite traveler review

“Oh my lord, this place was amazing and beautiful! It’s a perfect getaway with your loved one or even by yourself. We stayed in the Gypsy Wagon, and it was a dream. Super cute and comfortable and very affordable. Right next to the hot springs and bathroom. The hot springs were amazing, open all night long and very serene. Watching the sun set over the ginormous mountains, then watching the full moon rise, was breathtaking. The staff is so sweet. The place is just the best.” — Sarah H., Yelp

A bather's feet and painted toe nails, stick up through the water of a hot-springs pool at Avalanche Ranch near Redstone, Colorado. A snowy mountain provides a scenic background.

Things to see and do nearby

Here’s some more good news: You don’t need to roam far from the ranch to see some stunning alpine views. Lace up your hiking boots (or, in winter, a pair of lightweight snowshoes or cross-county skis), and trek across pine-lined paths and snow-draped trails and meadows. For an easy tour, try Avalanche Creek Road — you just might come across a sure-footed bighorn sheep clip-clopping along the landscape.

In summer, splash through the roaring Shoshone Rapids along the Colorado River, best accomplished on a raft with Whitewater Rafting, LLC in Glenwood Springs. Check out the iconic Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park to try thrilling rides like the Giant Canyon swing, which reaches speeds of 50 mph and offers views of the craggy canyon. Or explore the mountainous countryside on wheels with Crystal River Jeep Tours in Marble. Their expert tour guides lead you through the Crystal River Valley on wildflower-strewn trails formerly tread by miners and prospectors.

Dive into the area’s past at The Redstone Castle, which gives a glimpse into the style and culture of Western elites at the turn of the 20th century. Visited by the likes of John D. Rockefeller, J. Pierpont Morgan and Teddy Roosevelt, the building rests by the Crystal River, surrounded by shaking aspen trees. Within you’ll find furniture pieces by Gustav Stickley and Louis Tiffany, as well as a storied art collection.

Want More?

Discover the West Elk Loop scenic byway, a 205-mile, lasso-shaped route that passes through Black Canyon of the Gunnison, Kebler Pass and Redstone.


Photos courtesy of Avalanche Ranch

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