Road Trip Overview
Some of the least-crowded and most beautiful red-rock canyons, rivers and recreational opportunities await you on this fantastic road trip. Start in Salt Lake City where a thriving performing arts scene and records detailing your family tree await. Then, leave the city behind as you head east to Vernal, Utah. Discover dinosaur bones and tracks, along with fantastic water recreational opportunities. A highlight is floating on the crystal clear Green River just below the Flaming Gorge Dam in your own raft.
Farther east lies Dinosaur National Monument. Stop in Craig, Colo., and explore the area and the monument. In Steamboat Springs, stroll the downtown of this ski town that has churned out a record 80-plus Winter Olympic athletes since 1932. Then head to Kremmling and Hot Sulphur Springs, home to hot springs pools, en route to the breathtaking historical town of Grand Lake just a five-minute drive from Rocky Mountain National Park.
Afterwards, raft the Colorado River near Kremmling, visit Frisco and explore the stunning desert landscapes in Colorado National Monument and Arches National Park.
Road Trip Itinerary
Start: Salt Lake City, Utah
From a thriving performing arts scene to the world’s largest collection of genealogy records, here are 12 things to do in Salt Lake City before you start your Rocky Mountain adventure.
Stop 1: Ancient History in Vernal, Utah’s Dinosaurland
Locals like to brag the town was established 150,000,000 years ago, and there are plenty of former ancient residents lying around to prove it. See the giants surround the Utah Field House and the Wall of Bones at Dinosaur National Monument.
Stop 2: Flaming Gorge National Recreation Area
Take a break from the desert heat by jumping in the sparkling water at Flaming Gorge National Recreation Area. Spend several days exploring this 91-mile-long reservoir to check off our top-six-things-to-do list.
Stop 3: Take a Jurassic Journey through Moffat County, Colorado
Rugged and wild, Moffat County is Colorado’s Last Frontier where wide open spaces hold treasures too rare to be missed. Raft the Yampa past Steamboat Rock or watch wild horses in Deerlodge Park.
Stop 4: Go on a Grand Adventure in Grand County, Colorado
Leaning up against the national park’s west side, Grand County offers unparalleled outdoor opportunities without the crowds most ski towns have. Here are our nine favorites adventures to tackle before heading into the national park.
Stop 5: Rocky Mountain National Park
Enter the park at the Grand Lake Entrance and stop by the Kawuneeche Visitor Center. Here are some ideas for things to do in Rocky Mountain National Park.
Stop 6: Go from Paddle to Saddle in Kremmling, Colorado
Kremmling is a quaint, unspoiled cowboy town that is surrounded by the Rockies and the confluence of three rivers. Go on a cattle drive followed by whitewater rafting.
Stop 7: Hit the Frisco Adventure Park
Go disc golfing, skateboard or bike at the Frisco Adventure Park just off of I-70, on the shores of the Dillon Reservoir. Or learn how to sail or kayak in this laid-back mountain town.
Find Hidden Gems on Delta's Fruit Growers Trail
Visit western Colorado at the base of Grand Mesa, the world’s largest flat-top mountain. Come enjoy the wine, fruit, cranes and Black Canyon National Park.
Stop 9: Follow Time to Grand Junction's Wine Country
How has it gone from a western backwater to the heart of Colorado’s outdoor recreation and wine country? See our Grand Timeline.
Stop 10: Do Childish Things in Moab, Utah
From a walk past life-sized dinosaurs to rafting the Colorado River, your family trip to Canyonlands and Arches national parks will be full of adventure with this list of the top seven things to do with kids in Moab.