AROUND COLORADO: DENVER POST COLUMN

josh berman denver postEach month, my 500-word article appears in the Denver Post Sunday Travel section, in a column called "Around Colorado" (formerly "Out West"). All my Denver Post articles since 2012 are archived below. My fellow travel columnists are Kara Williams, Dan Leeth, & Chryss Cada. My editor is Jenn Fields.

DEBUT COLUMN: February 14, 2012:

There's always more to see right here at home

On this morning, gravel grinds beneath my boots and cold, dry air blows in and out of my winter beard.

—February 14, 2012

RECENT COLUMNS:

 

An easy safari to view wild-animal kingdom

The elevated walkway ascends from the Wild Animal Sanctuary gift shop and orientation point. We step up the inclined path, passing above lazing leopards, tigers, and mountain lions below, then continue past a green arrow pointing to the "Bolivian Lion Complex...." —November 23, 2014

Impromptu getaway proves just the Rx for an over-planned life

It is a rash weekend escape plan, hatched by my friend Jeff Christiansen, with an e-mail late last night: "I hope the summer has treated y'all well. This nice weekend weather has us thinking about heading up the Poudre tomorrow night for an overnighter. Wanna join us?" —October 24, 2014

berman elk colorado

A peaceful getaway amid Estes Park's bustle and bluster

I'm sitting back on a creaky, wooden, wrap-around cabin porch, wearing a sweater and ski cap for the first time all summer and watching the rain come down. —September 26, 2014

berman wildlife

Mary Taylor Young shares her tales from Colorado's trails

Whether looking skyward at some rare aerial courtship ritual or looking down at an amphibian-vs.-reptile battle royale, Mary Taylor Young has been observing Colorado wildlife for more than 40 years. —August 29, 2014

berman steamboat colorado

Around Colorado: So much for a family to do in Steamboat Springs

The Tenderfoot trail pulls me down the mountain, through another aspen grove, then up a high-banked turn, whipping me around to do it again. —August 1, 2014

Around Colorado: Bear Grylls courses teach survival skills for (almost) all ages

"Looks like your shelters are about to be tested!" our instructor says as the temperature drops and a massive front rolls off the Continental Divide. —July 11, 2014

colorado beer

Thirsting to find the great Colorado Craft Beer Trail

My first sip of Worthog Stout at Bootstrap Brewing in Niwot is a milky, rich, bittersweet splash of all that is right in life. —June 6, 2014

dude ranch berman

Back on the ranch: Summer is for dudes

Granite crags, bald ridges, a bluebird sky and a small herd of elk ambling along the treeline. This is my world as Gandy, my horse for the day, steps carefully through Pikes Peak National Forest. —May 11, 2014

carousel colorado

Nederland's Carousel of Happiness: Still happy, still only a buck

"I want the mermaid!" cries a smaller voice. "No, the gorilla!"

Such is the anticipation as we twist our way toward one of Colorado's most whimsical, fantastical and affordable attractions. —April 13, 2014

maya denver

"Maya" at Denver Museum of Nature & Science chance to time travel

I'm feeling very kid-in-a-candy-store as I push through the door into "Maya: Hidden Worlds Revealed," a massive exhibit in the new wing of the Denver Museum of Nature & Science.

—March 16, 2014

berman food travel

Favorite breakfast joints make it easy to fuel up for a Colorado trek

Sunrise comes quickly in Lucky's Cafe, a cozy, east-facing eatery in north Boulder. In an instant, the day's first butter-yellow rays blast through the windows, splashing color onto the sides of diners' faces and their raised forkfuls of eggs.

—Feb. 16, 2014

josh berman travel writer skiing eldora

Eldora Mountain Resort close to Denver, like a backyard ski area

It's a balmy 57 degrees in Boulder Valley, but in 47 minutes flat, I am up the canyon and boot-clomping across the parking lot at Eldora Mountain Resort, suited up for cold and wind at over 9,000 feet.

—January 19, 2104

josh berman skiing

Skiing again after a long leave of absence

The chairlift glides up into quiet whiteness. My seatmates are chattering about which double-black tree run they're going to take, but I have only one dangling-ski, frosty-cheeked, stomach-tightening thought: Will I remember how to stand up?

December 20, 2103

joshua berman travel writer

DIA's "Mustang" a reminder of travel's surprises

My children are small and innocent. Until they're a few years older, my wife and I are trying to shelter them from all things evil. Seeing a big blue horse is enough of a novelty for them. They don't need to know that the beast's nicknames include "Blucifer," "DIAblo" and "Satan's Steed."

December 1, 2013

Photographer Colby Brown of Giving Lens offers fall shooting tips

As founder and director of The Giving Lens, a nonprofit that combines travel, photography and giving back in developing countries, Denver-based photographer Colby Brown travels often, documenting humanitarian projects, leading groups of photographers and putting cameras in the hands of young people.

—Oct. 27, 2013

Keep travel scary: Facing your fears can reap remarkable rewards

There I was, ascending a one-thousand-foot-high radio antenna somewhere east of Boulder, standing on top of the service elevator, and interviewing a BASE jumper named Billy Ricard.

—Sept. 27, 2013

Colorado trips not taken make for an intriguing bucket list

The mornings are cooler, the heat of day not so long anymore, and the spittle from the swamp cooler not as necessary in the evenings...

Aug. 30, 2013

josh berman dude ranch

"Dude ranching at Brush Creek in Wyoming ideal for dad-daughter bonding"

"Daddy, what's a dude?"

I think for a moment, tempted to make a "Big Lebowski" film reference to my 5-year-old daughter, but instead I say, "Dudes are people who don't get to spend much time around horses — like us."

July 2, 2013

Green Mountain Falls' Green Box art fest to showcase "Cloud City"

"There are a lot of pieces to this puzzle," says Christian Keesee, founder of the Green Box Arts Festival, about moving Tomás Saraceno's massive interactive sculpture, "Cloud City,"....

—June 4, 2013

josh berman denver post incline trail

Manitou Incline Trail is a Hiker's Hike

"WARNING: This is an EXTREME trail," declares the sign at the bottom of the Manitou Incline Trail, an infamous hardcore fitness attraction off Ruxton Avenue in Manitou Springs, just a few miles west of Colorado Springs.

—May 7, 2013

Lottery still funding Colorado's Great Outdoors

"Match any 3 like amounts, win that amount. Win up to $27,000!" I pick the shiniest penny in my pocket and start scratching. As the numbers are revealed, I'm already spending the prize money in my head, paying off loans, buying a car ... almost, almost, but no!

—April 9, 2013

Boulder's st julien hotel locals' home away from home

In the lobby of the St Julien Hotel & Spa, the windows soar to take in the scenery — a snow-covered Front Range landscape of trees rising into the flatiron formations and Green Mountain summit beyond.

March 12, 2013

Young environmental activist has film fest role.

Xiuhtezcatl Martinez, 12, scampers over logs and rocks, dark hair dancing as he jumps from boulder to boulder. Now he is romping through high grass with his younger brother and enormous dog; now the impassioned sixth-grader is talking into the camera, explaining why he likes spending so much time in the mountains.

—February 12, 2013.

A chat with nature photographer Don Mammoser about photographing Colorado

I can't find my slippers, so I step outside barefoot, picking through crusty patches of snow, toes stinging as I scramble for just the right angle.

—January 15, 2013

maya 2012 aumrak

Where will you be when the Mayan calendar clicks oveR?

This Friday morning — the infamous Dec. 21, 2012 — the 13th b'aktun of the Mayan Long Count will draw to a close. It is the final morning in a precisely determined measure of 1.872 million days, written in stone 1,300 years ago near Tortuguero, Mexico.

—Dec. 18, 2012

ford

Ski-in and sleep in former home of President Ford

"I'm cooking dinner in Betty Ford's kitchen."

Not the most adventurous or daring status update I've ever posted, but a new experience nonetheless, which is the essence of traveling, right?

Nov. 20, 2012

HIKING TEENS

Using the Great Outdoors as a Vehicle for Life's Lessons

"Right now, I am aware of the first star."

We are sitting on grass and pine needles near a collapsed old hunting cabin, four adults and 15 young teens playing a game of "right now" in the middle of the woods. There are a few snickers and moans, but everybody tips back to look at the sky.

Oct. 23, 2012

berman fall leaves

Colorado trail-lover's trail leads to leaves galore

There is fall foliage. And then there's the Odessa-Fern Lake backpacking circuit in late September. Most years, this is the peak of Colorado's crispest, most spectacular, leaf-gasmic yellowness, and on this day, as I finished packing, cinching and preparing, the weather and the leaves were perfect.

—Sept. 25, 2012

   
 

"Aspen quest pans out with gems

The first time I tried to travel to Aspen nearly ended in disaster. It was early, about 7 a.m., when I shot out of the Eisenhower Tunnel and into a freak mid-October whiteout.

—March 13, 2012

 

Boulder's bike-ridin' Ryan Van Duzer exudes a Colorado-style positive energy

I'm at a typical Front Range coffee shop, outside on a fiercely sunny patio, watching be-spandexed cyclists and climbers sip their lattes amid furrow-browed freelancers and hassled mommies. Caffeine brings us together.

—April 10, 2012

 

Estes Park's hiking, wildlife viewing and dining among many surprises

The drive to Estes Park always goes more quickly than I expect. Maybe it's the scenic glory of this particular stretch of U.S. 36. The rocks, canyons and cliffs definitely dominate this twisting, building drive — and so does a machine-gun barrage of questions from a certain 4½-year-old sitting behind me.

—May 8, 2012

 

First-responder training for wilderness

 

"Help! There's been an accident!" A man jogs up to me and my partner, Read McCulloch, to tell us what happened. "I was mountain biking with my girlfriend, and she just popped off this jump and slammed into a tree. She's not moving! Please help!"

—June 5, 2012

 

Telluride trek in San Juans a nice intro to box canyon town

"Rock!" I yell, warning the squeaking pica and marmots below, as a basketball-size boulder tumbles violently.

—July 3, 2012

 

Wanderlust Festival yoga retreat at Copper Mountain a true escape

 

The world is upside down. I'm not talking about social inequality, climate change or the "end" of the Maya calendar. I mean, I'm dangling in half, looking between my legs at an ocean of arms and legs.

—July 31, 2012

 

Travel abroad in your own backyard

 

I am walking beneath Tibetan prayer flags at dusk, watching an Asian bull elephant bathe itself with grass and straw in front of a dusty orange ball of a sun. Two gibbons swing hand-over-hand across vines above; flying foxes with 4-foot wingspans creep across branches inside; and around the next corner, clouded leopards prowl for food....

—August 28, 2012