Roadtripping Colorado | Was it safe during Covid-19?

12.04.2020

It turned out that neither the pandemic nor the possibility of Smoke Haze deterred the travelers from coming to the state of Colorado. Denver is the 5th busiest airport in the U.S.A, and to expect that the footfall will be lesser than expected during the long weekend of Columbus Day was too much to ask for. So yes, it was busy but in most places, we felt alright. The reason being most of our itinerary included outdoors and hiking and also because most places had mask mandate. 

                          Cars lined up during the sunset at the Great Sand Dunes National Monument. 

Here's what we had planned for our visit from Oct 9-19th 2020 and what we found out:

  The map is approximate of our travel itinerary as two routes may currently be closed that we took Silverthorne - Grand Lake Entrance to RMNP and Independence Pass via Leadville. That does not show on maps currently. 



  1. We traveled from Denver - Silverthorne - Rocky Mountain National Park - Idaho Springs - Aspen - Black Canyon of the Gunnison - Ouray - Durango Train Ride - Pagosa Springs - Great Sand Dunes National Monument - Denver.

  2. According to CDC guidelines, Airports, Bus stations, Train stations, and Rest stops are all places travelers can be exposed to the virus in the air and on surfaces. Hence, we need to postpone all unnecessary travel or, we must take all precautions. Here, you can avoid Public toilets or be in masks at all times and sanitize frequently or better still land at an airport that's lesser crowded such as Aspen, Telluride, Montrose, Colorado Springs, somewhere in New Mexico, and then drive down. However, when traveling from New Mexico, you must be aware of the quarantine rules. 
  3. As soon as we landed, we boarded the shuttle bus to the Alamo rental car from the airport. The bus was clean and the masks were enforced. The bus comes very frequently, so if you see one gets crowded per you get into the next bus. At the rental company, all were in masks. 
  4. Our first stop was Silverthorne, where we stayed two nights. There is a big outlet mall in Silverthorne. Some shops in 'Outlets at Silverthorne' had a restricted number of entries, and others were not crowded at all. Also, the discounts were phenomenal at some stores due to less footfall. We got our Columbia Trail Pants for $29. We also did biking in Silverthorne, and we found that outdoors most people are careful enough not to get too close anyway. In Restaurants, people were wearing masks except when having food.
  5. In most areas in Rocky Mountain National Park, people were wearing masks. The rangers, the information center, the bus drivers wore masks too. We were surprised to see how well abiding people in Colorado were, that every time we would encounter another soul on our trail, both them and us would wear masks. The shuttle buses on the premises had mask mandate and there were compulsory gaps between seats. 


  6. Aspen, in particular, excelled with the mandatory mask mandate throughout the city. The shuttle buses had seat gaps, and the shuttle bus from Highlands Center to Maroon Bells had rangers counting the number of people and directing them to their seats. 



  7. Durango Train Ride had a mandatory mask mandate. 

  8. At Ouray, people were wearing masks in most places. Except inside the hot springs.
  9. Due to the nature of the activity at the hot springs in the Springs@Pagosa Springs where there were several pools, and people needed to go from one to another, most people weren't wearing masks. If you wish to avoid infection, which we found could be contagious at Pagosa, avoid big Pools in Pagosa and instead go for secluded pools/hot springs during this time. We liked our pools at Healing waters and the spa where we stayed, however the experience at the Springs situated next to the river is unparalleled. 
  10. Great Sand Dunes had most people wear masks during trails, hiking, and camping. 
  11. We stayed at Hilton in downtown Denver, and the hotel had mask mandate and sanitizing stations. The restaurants in the city also had mask mandate although while roaming during the night, we found several homeless people on the street, which due to job loss during Covid-19 has increased and further has increased unpleasant activities across the capital.
  12. We found that the airline had a temperature check and mask mandate.

1 comment

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    ReplyDelete

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