Adventurous Things to Do in Royal Gorge Colorado (& How to Convince Yourself You’ll Survive)

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Adventuring for the unadventurous: the author before crossing two suspension bridges in the Fins course at Royal Gorge CO.
Adventuring for the unadventurous: Crossing two suspension bridges in the Fins course. Photo credit: Evan Fisher

The writer was hosted.

Throw a stone in Cañon City, Colorado, and you’re going to hit a white water kayaker or free solo rock climber; the area is jam-packed with summertime activities and it attracts outdoorsy thrill seekers from all around.

From world-class rafting with Echo Canyon River Expeditions to biking down Pikes Peak, to scaling sheer rock cliffs beneath the Royal Gorge Bridge – the highest suspension bridge in America – there is no shortage of adrenaline-pumping things to do in Royal Gorge, Colorado.

But what about someone who’s not a natural-born daredevil? I like a scenic hike and the occasional rollercoaster ride, but a week of rafting and rock climbing? It’s not my standard vacation plan.

SheBuysTravel Tip: Read our list of the 12 things you must know before traveling to Colorado.

Heading for Adventure

Never having gone on a vacation quite like this before, I stuffed my carry-on bag with any adventuring essentials I could think of: water bottle, quick-dry clothes, lots of layers. And still managed to find room for a minor fear of heights and some general anxiety about water sports. (I never leave home without them).

As I flew into the immaculate Colorado Springs, Colorado, airport, I decided to attempt the trip from the point of view of someone in a travel group who is a little apprehensive about the itinerary. Maybe a kid who doesn’t want to bring up how scared they are about ziplining because their mom has already bought the tickets. Or a friend on a reunion trip who doesn’t want to look like a wimp by backing out of the river excursion.

How would they approach these activities? And what can the adventure guides do to monitor guests and keep everyone safe and happy?

Thus prepared, I set off to explore the most adventurous things to do in Royal Gorge, Colorado, and nearby Colorado Springs, then powered down with a few less adrenaline-inducing but equally entertaining attractions.

Here’s how it all went.

Royal Gorge CO - Our bikes all loaded onto the Pikes Peak Bike Tours van.
Our bikes all loaded onto the Pikes Peak Bike Tours van. Photo credit: Evan Fisher

Pedaling Down Pikes Peak

Pikes Peak, known for unpredictable weather and punishing automobile races to the summit, is also a popular downhill biking route.

Our travel group met at the Pikes Peak Bike Tours storefront in Colorado Springs where Marcel, our tour guide, got us fitted for bikes and pads, went over the tour agenda, and gave us the safety briefing.

The two things he stressed over and over:

  • The weather can change at a moment’s notice up on the mountain, and
  • This was going to be a “Challenge By Choice” experience.

In a nutshell, CBC meant that each participant would be making their own decisions about when to participate and when to call it quits. In this case, there would be a van following the tour downhill plus one tour guide in front of the pack and one at the rear.

If a participant were to forget the CBC lesson and push themselves just a little too far beyond their limits, the tour guides would be keeping watch and ready to load someone into the van.

Once in the van, guides would talk with the guest and try to understand what went wrong– was something too physically challenging, or maybe the view over a cliff caused the guest to panic. A gentle reminder of the safety systems in place (well-maintained bikes, guides maintaining safe group speeds, etc.) can often soothe any fears and get the biker back on the road, Marcel assured us.

Royal Gorge CO - author at the Cog Railway station in Manitou Springs, CO.
The Cog Railway station in Manitou Springs, CO. Photo credit: Evan Fisher

Riding the Cog Railway to the Top

One popular method of getting up the mountain is to ride the Cog Railway, a specialized train capable of climbing the steep mountainside that begins its journey in Manitou Springs.

Our group chose to ride the Cog and have the van meet us at the top with the bikes. When our train departed the Cog Railway Depot, it was a little rainy but a pleasant 65 degrees. The ride up provided incredible mountain views, and we watched the landscape turn from damp evergreen forest to windswept rock. Two-thirds of the way to the peak, it started to snow. Then the train slowly came to a stop and the conductor informed us that support staff were not able to reach the station at the summit because the roads were completely frozen over.

Royal Gorge CO - on the Cog train, about 2000 feet from the summit of Pikes Peak.
On the Cog train, about 2000 feet from the summit of Pikes Peak. Photo credit: Evan Fisher

That meant we weren’t going to make it to the peak either.

Just like that, our bike tour was canceled by Mother Nature. All we could do was enjoy the Cog views on the way down.

Go Before You Go

We got a lot more Cog time than we had expected, which turned out to be a little difficult. You see I listened when the tour guides said to drink lots of water to avoid issues at altitude. Then I learned the train had no bathroom!

It was a very long two-hour potty-less train ride up to the top and back down to the bottom.

Note that when weather nixes the mountain bike ride, Pikes Peak Bike Tours generally will refund the cost of the tour minus the Cog ticket.

Was it Fun?

Rain check on the actual mountain biking experience. But the awe-inspiring views from the Cog were definitely a highlight, despite the lack of bathroom facilities.

How to Conquer Your Fear

The guides were very reassuring and compassionate. I think trusting that you are in good hands on this tour is an excellent way to get in the right mindset to have fun.

Royal Gorge CO - getting comfortable with the zipline equipment on a ground-level set of cables.
Getting comfortable with the zipline equipment on a ground-level set of cables. Photo credit: Evan Fisher


At a slightly lower elevation in Colorado Springs, the weather cleared up enough for us to try something truly terrifying: ziplining through the Broadmoor Soaring Adventure course.

Our group piled into a van and headed up another mountain to get trained on safe zip lining. Our zip leader, Bobby, walked through all the equipment and safety features, reiterated how ziplining was also a Challenge By Choice activity, and helped us traverse a training line suspended between two trees. Then we headed to the first elevated platform.

The “Woods” and “Fins” zipline courses start small and end VERY big. On the first three lines, you are flying between evergreen trees, able to reach out and almost touch the nearby branches, probably a few dozen feet off the ground.

I remember climbing down from the third-line platform thinking “maybe this isn’t so bad.” Then I turned around to see the two suspension bridges we had to cross to get to the next launch point. Not to mention the next three platforms themselves, which were cantilevered to the sides of the mountains.

Royal Gorge CO - zipping through the Woods course at Broadmoor Soaring Adventure.
Zipping through the Woods course at Broadmoor Soaring Adventure. Photo credit: Evan Fisher

The Point of No Return

Bobby was kind enough to tell us that beyond the bridges was effectively a point of no return; there was no real way to get someone off the final platform other than the 1,700-foot final zipline over the ravine.

With the help of the junior guide, I shuffled across the bridges, eyes locked on the horizon. The guide walked ahead of me…backwards and cheerfully bantering the whole time.

The final two ziplines were a challenge. Being in flight along the line was exhilarating, but standing on the platform with nothing to do but realize just how high you are above the ground can be pretty nerve-wracking.

Royal Gorge CO - view from final zipline platform (GOAT) looking back towards the suspension bridges. The zipline between was so long that the photo starts to lose resolution.
View from final zipline platform (GOAT) looking back towards the suspension bridges. The zipline between was so long that the photo starts to lose resolution. Photo credit: Evan Fisher

I was glad to step off the last zipline platform (nicknamed “the GOAT”) and soar the final 1,700 feet. The controlled 180-foot rappel event at the end was a piece of cake next to stepping off the G.O.A.T. platform. But that didn’t stop me from kissing the ground when I landed.

Royal Gorge CO - the final rappel. Note the work glove in the bottom right. These are your brakes on the Broadmoor ziplines: you drag them along the cable to slow your flight as you approach a platform.
The final rappel. Note the work glove in the bottom right. These are your brakes on the Broadmoor ziplines: you drag them along the cable to slow your flight as you approach a platform. Photo credit: Evan Fisher

Was it Fun?

Yes, especially the zip through the trees (“Woods” course). It felt like flying on a hoverbike through the Star Wars forest moon. But anyone with a fear of heights will have trouble on the mountainside platforms. The views were stunning, and I got to say I did it! Two of my travel companions were seasoned zipliners and both said this was some of the best high wires they’d ever been on.

How to Conquer Your Fear

  • The tried-and-true method of Don’t Look Down, especially on the suspension bridges.
  • Take the first step. If it’s a suspension bridge, then it means you can take the next step. If it’s a zipline, well, there’s only one step you’ve got to take!
  • Remind yourself that thousands of people have done this before you.
  • Remember, you are clipped to a support structure at all times by at least one safety strap.
  • The Broadmoor ziplines utilize a dual cable system, a much-appreciated redundancy.
  • Let the guides reassure you, they’re professionals and do this literally all day, usually backward.
Royal Gorge CO - some of the final rebar rungs and guide cable of our climb. You’ll notice there is a section with no rungs; this is intentional in spots with natural hand and foot holds.
Some of the final rebar rungs and guide cable of our climb. You’ll notice there is a section with no rungs; this is intentional in spots with natural hand and foot holds. Photo credit: Evan Fisher

Royal Gorge Via Ferrata

Roughly translated to “The Iron Way,” Via Ferrata describes a method of rock climbing designed to get inexperienced climbers through mountain passes.

It was popularized in Italy starting around World War I. U-shaped pieces of rebar are driven into the rock like oversized staples to form a zigzagging ladder with reliable hand and footholds. There is also cabling that runs along the path that climbers clip into for security.

When I signed up for the trip, the Via Ferrata was the activity I was most excited about – a physical challenge and a chance to get up close and personal with some really cool rock formations.

Then the night before our reservation I decided to watch some dizzying drone footage of the Royal Gorge courses and saw climbers clinging to sheer rock faces several hundred feet above the ground.

Who needs caffeine when you’ve got YouTube and an overactive imagination?

Royal Gorge CO - three people hiking down Royal Gorge to the Via Ferrata routes.
Hiking down Royal Gorge to the Via Ferrata routes. Photo credit: Evan Fisher

Hiking Down to Climb Up

Needless to say, I was a little nervous as we geared up to climb the next morning. Starting at the top of Royal Gorge, we hiked a switchback path down to the base of the beginner course. My legs were tense and I could feel myself leaning away from the valley below during the hike.

At the first rungs, we clipped to the guide cable and started our climb. I inched along, hugging the rebar when I glanced up at the climber ahead of me. Something about seeing a woman twice my age scamper up the course one-handed while snapping photos was enough to convince me that maybe I could handle it.

Royal Gorge CO - the beginner Via Ferrata course at Royal Gorge. You can spot a few orange and white helmets on the slope.
The beginner Via Ferrata course at Royal Gorge. You can spot a few orange and white helmets on the slope. Photo credit: Evan Fisher

I began to unclench muscle groups and enjoy the physicality of the climb. Once we made it to the top I was feeling energized and ready for more.

Royal Gorge CO - Four people going up the via ferrata course. Look closely and you can see the guide cable and some rebar rungs.
Look closely and you can see the guide cable and some rebar rungs. Photo credit: Evan Fisher

Once You Get the Hang of It…

On the second hike down to the base of the next course, my legs were relaxed and I started seeing the incredible nature and views for the first time. A herd of bighorn sheep hopped along the cliffs and tiny birds flashed bits of color as they swooped through the valley.

The second route was an intermediate level and included a suspension bridge (man, those things are popular in Cañon City). I still didn’t look down while crossing this one, but I did walk it with just a little pep in my step.

Royal Gorge CO - mini suspension bridge at Royal Gorge leading to a popular photo-op spot on top of a rock pillar.
Mini suspension bridge at Royal Gorge leading to a popular photo-op spot on top of a rock pillar. Photo credit: Evan Fisher
Royal Gorge CO - view of the giant suspension bridge from the rock pillar.
View of the giant suspension bridge from the rock pillar. Photo credit: Evan Fisher

And that pep stuck around for the vertical section of the route as well. I was even able to snap a few selfies on the climb! None good enough for print, unfortunately.

As we pulled ourselves up over the top of the gorge, I couldn’t help but turn around and let out a victory scream down into the valley below.

Was it Fun?

 WHAT A RUSH!! Tons of fun, and an incredible sense of accomplishment at the end.

How to Conquer Your Fear

  • Start small: Hike the switchback trail down and climb the intro course. On the second hike down to the advanced courses I felt the fear turn to excitement.
  • Still probably Don’t Look Down. But if you work up the courage, don’t forget to look around— the view is incomparable.
  • Talk to your fellow climbers; it will help take your mind off your apprehension. If you know your group, talk about the new show you’ve been watching. If you don’t know your group, what’s a better place to get to know someone than a thousand feet in the air?
  • Look around and see who else is climbing the mountainside; I felt very reassured when I saw a couple of tweens scampering up the rungs of another course.
  • Ask about safety testing—one guide told us that they pressure test the rungs yearly, and that most of them are buried at least 12 inches into the rock.
Royal Gorge CO - unloading the raft from van trailer at the put-in on the Arkansas River.
Unloading the raft at the put-in on the Arkansas River. Photo credit: Evan Fisher

Whitewater Rafting the Arkansas River

The Arkansas River comes roaring down from the mountains and through Cañon City, home of Echo Canyon River Expeditions.

Snow melt and rainfall swell the river in spring, and the locals were quick to tell us they could hardly remember a wetter season than the 6 weeks leading up to our trip.

As we wriggled into wetsuits (free to borrow with a river trip purchase) and got the safety briefing from Craig, our tough-love river guide, he told us that sections of the river were going to be Class IV and even “bonafide Class V” rapids that day. For any uninitiated rafters, the rapid classification scale goes from I (1-more of a float trip) to V (5-extremely difficult). (There is also a Class 6, but those rapids are effectively considered not navigable by humans.)

At the boat put-in, the river was flowing faster than any water I had paddled before, but the surface was smooth enough to get my bearings in the boat before we hit the real action.

After practicing our synchronized paddling, we drifted around a bend in the river and saw the first churning waves just upstream. Paddles at the ready, the boat lurched towards the waves.

Royal Gorge CO - Five people in raft, whitewater rafting on the Arizona River. Some of our first rapids.
Day 1 of rafting on the Arizona River. Some of our first rapids. Photo courtesy of Evan Fisher

Just before we reached them, Craig barked out “FORWARD ONE!” and a giddy excitement set in. We stabbed our paddles into the water and wrenched them backward in a single motion, accelerating the boat around the edge of a nearly submerged boulder.

A few more slick maneuvers and we made it through our first set of obstacles, slightly soaked and whooping with excitement.

Churn, Calm and Chilled

This stretch of river alternated between churn and calm flow, giving us newbie rafters plenty of chances to catch our breath and take in the incredible granite landscape.

I had picked up a waterproof phone case and lanyard at the Echo Canyon front desk but found that there was never quite enough time to pull out the case and snap a photo between water features. The good news is that Echo Canyon has a GoPro on the front of each boat and a photography team stationed on the riverbank ready to capture your journey in all its soggy bliss.

Royal Gorge CO - A tragedy in three parts. Craig, our river guide, shows us the importance of not having any loose items in the boat. We never found his hat.
Craig, our river guide, shows us the importance of not having any loose items in the boat as he looses his hat. It was never recovered. Photo courtesy of Evan Fisher

Whenever the boat dipped into an oncoming wave, water crashed into the front row of rowers, where I happened to be seated. This was coincidentally how I learned the importance of cinching the neck of my wet suit totally closed.

Getting increasingly soaked with each set of rapids is a tough way to begin a raft journey on a windy day. Our boat only made it halfway through the first day’s voyage before we got too cold to keep going.

Royal Gorge CO - A very soggy Day 1 of rafting the Arizona River. Several rafters getting splashed.
A very soggy Day 1 of rafting the Arizona River. Photo courtesy of Evan Fisher

We stopped for lunch and huddled in an outfitter’s van with the heat on high to see if we could warm up enough to continue, but with a stiff wind and no direct sunlight we decided to “call an audible” and pick back up the next day.

Royal Gorge CO - Day 2 of rafting through the Royal Gorge with Echo Canyon River Expeditions. We passed right under the Royal Gorge Bridge, but were too focused on the water to realize it! Six people in blue raft.
Day 2 of rafting through the Royal Gorge with Echo Canyon River Expeditions. We passed right under the Royal Gorge Bridge, but were too focused on the water to realize it! Photo courtesy of Evan Fisher

Rafting Day 2: We Got a Swimmer!

We set out with two boats on our second river ride and the other boat took the lead. The waves were bigger and the water was faster, but our guides could read the river like…well, like it was their job, and we forged on with glee and determination.

Twenty minutes into the trip, the crew was fast approaching a rock wall when our rear guide cried out “WE GOT A SWIMMER!” The two guides at the front of the boat snapped to attention and began shouting “SWIM TO ME” to a rafter who had been launched out of the lead boat.

The swimmer shook off the initial shock and began doggy-paddling a straight line to our boat—a line that was going to get him sandwiched between the boat and the canyon wall.

Half the team stuck to the paddles, heeding the guide’s calls to keep us on the safe path through the rocks, and the other half dove to the right side of the boat to haul the swimmer back onboard. With a mighty tug and a primal shout, the swimmer flopped onto our raft and the rescue was over. The potent mix of adrenaline and triumph made for the most thrilling memory of the trip.

Royal Gorge CO - A moment of calm on Day 2 of rafting the Arizona River. Two blue boats on the river each holding several rafters in orange life vests.
A moment of calm on Day 2 of rafting the Arizona River. Photo courtesy of Evan Fisher

Was it Fun?

Incredibly fun. The comradery and excitement are hard to beat. All the benefits of a waterpark and a National Park rolled into one exhilarating package. Echo Canyon has successfully turned me into a water sports person.

How to Conquer Your Fear

  • These river guides live to raft. Eavesdrop on any conversation between guides and there’s roughly a 100% chance they’re talking about YouTube videos of river runs or plans to tackle the rapids somewhere in the world. Trust them to guide you safely.
  • Your flotation device works well, and you will spend minimal time overboard by swimming hard to the nearest boat.
  • Remember that the job of the river guide is to guide your boat through the safe paths in the river. Where I saw brown, bubbling water, the guides saw hidden obstacles and water patterns that inform their route. It was amazing to see them expertly rattle off paddle instructions that kept our boat from flipping, splatting, spinning, or getting sandwiched between rock features.
  • The boats are routinely inspected, and newer designs allow water to flow out through the bottom instead of building up and requiring the paddlers to bail it out.

SheBuysTravel Tip: Wear a swimsuit underneath your rafting wetsuit. Don’t wear anything around your neck that will interfere with the ability of the wetsuit to cinch closed. Glasses seem like they’ll help block water, but it felt like they just cupped water against my eyes.

Royal Rush Skycoaster

This we didn’t have time to try. Am I sad about that? Only a little. I again turned to YouTube to see what all of the hype is about. Now I understand why even my thrill-seeker travel partners were a little spooked by this one. I’m not sure if it was the Cloudscraper Zipline or the Skycoaster that had guests screaming in the background, but I know where I’d bet my money. It’s giving me butterflies just adding the hyperlink.

Final Thoughts on Adventuring in Royal Gorge

It was an intense and demanding week but I’m very glad I went through with everything, and I’m excited to check out more Via Ferrata and white water rafting. I also think this trip helped me get over a fear of heights and water.

Through all the adventure and risk, the only injury I had by the end was a blood blister I got from the plastic buckle on my fanny pack. Colorado made an adventurer out of me.

Less Adventurous Things to Do in Royal Gorge and Colorado Springs

If someone on your trip still can’t quite bring themselves to take the plunge on these high-intensity activities, there is still tons to do in the Royal Gorge region around Colorado Springs.

Royal Gorge CO - Entrance to the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Museum in Colorado Springs.
Entrance to the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Museum in Colorado Springs. The museum is set up so that your tour will be personalized to your favorite winter and summer sports, as well as any disabilities you may have. Lots of the exhibits are interactive and very kid friendly. Photo credit: Evan Fisher

Olympic and Paralympic Museum

 A stunning metal structure that stands at the foot of the mountains, the museum’s shape was designed to evoke a discus thrower in motion.

Walking in, we were greeted by a 3-story display that showcases Olympic and Paralympic athletes. A family of little kids started to squeal with joy when a larger-than-life Simone Biles appeared on the screen, and I may have squealed a little too. If you’re lucky, you may get to meet an Olympic medalist in person, as several are employed at the museum and more have been known to drop by on occasion.

They do a good job of laying out the physical space and speed of these athletes, it really shows that their abilities are superhuman. I raced a hologram of Jesse Owens and even with gym shoes and a 15-foot head start I still lost by a mile.

The O&P museum was not necessarily at the top of my To Do List when signing up for the trip, but I’m really glad we got the chance to go.

It’s easy to see Olympic athletes as one-dimensional, especially if they don’t perform as well as expected on the big day. The museum does a wonderful job of humanizing them all. You expect athlete backstories to require physical perseverance, but I was struck by how many many also involve overcoming loss in their personal lives.

One final nice touch was an interactive map where you could see which Olympians came from your state or even your hometown.

Visitors get a chance to hold the birds and smile giddily at the Broadmoor Falconry program. Author in blue jacket holding a falcon on left arm, with falconer's glove.
Visitors get a chance to hold the birds and smile giddily at the Broadmoor Falconry program. Photo courtesy of Evan Fisher

Broadmoor Falconry

Normally held outdoors where the birds of prey can show off their speed and agility, we met several birds indoors on a rainy day.

Part history lesson, part biology class, the trainers walk around with the birds perched on their leather-gloved hands and explain how humans and birds have been hunting together for centuries.

Then the handlers gave each of us a glove and a tasty morsel of mouse guts. When I revealed the treat, the bird darted from the handler, talons-first, and crashed onto my outstretched hand to gobble the guts.

The barn owl ambush was eerily silent, and the wings of the Eurasian eagle-owl beat the air with such force that it ruffled the hair of everyone in the room.

For anyone who loves animals, it is tough to beat this opportunity to work with these birds up close. Make sure to get some slow-motion footage of the bird pouncing, they are truly too quick to see in real-time.

Colorado Jeep Tour

If you don’t want to drive yourself around the area but still want to bounce around as you take in the stunning views, you can leave the driving to Colorado Jeep Tours. The company offers half- and full-day tours. The full-day tour includes lunch and admission to Royal Gorge Park.

Aerial Gondola

The gondolas travel 2,200 feet across the Gorge, one of the longest-single span gondolas in America. You’ll be 1,200 feet above the Arkansas River with stunning views of the canyon.

Take advantage of the unlimited gondola rides included in your general admission ticket to Royal Gorge Bridge and Park. The ride is open year-round, weather permitting. If the weather causes the ride to close, you can have your ticket validated for a return visit the next day.

Royal Gorge Route Railroad

In 1905, President Teddy Roosevelt described the Royal Gorge Route Railroad as “the trip that bankrupts the English language!” The train ride through the Colorado Rockies runs at breakfast, lunch, afternoon and dinner. There’s a Murder Mystery dinner train on the weekends, wine dinners in August and October, and Oktoberfest in September and October.

Royal Gorge Dinosaur Experience

This family-friendly attraction consists of interactive displays, casts of dinosaur fossils, hands-on exhibits and animatronic dinosaurs. If you want a little adventure, there’s a multi-story ropes course.

TommyKnocker Playland

Theme park for younger kids, ages 5 to 12.

Where to Eat and Drink in the Royal Gorge Region

One thing that doesn’t require you to conquer any fears is the food! The local restaurant scene is fantastic, from the Homa kitchen inside Kinship Landing Hotel to Rabbit Hole, the Alice in Wonderland-themed underground bistro.

And after a day of rafting, you can’t beat the elevated American flavors of 8 Mile Bar & Grill. Turn in your wetsuits and head next door for a patio dining experience that offers lunch, dinner, and drinks.

Holy Cross Abbey Winery

Originally a religious school for boys, the monks and nuns turned the grounds into a winery in the early 2000s. Although it’s no longer run by the religious order, the grape crushing, processing, and bottling still all happen on-site. Pair a flight of in-house wines with a scrumptious charcuterie board for the full experience.

Where to Stay in Colorado Springs, Colorado

Royal Gorge CO - 5-6 people standing and chatting on the camp deck at Kinship Landing.
The camp deck at Kinship Landing, available for nightly rental. Photo credit: Evan Fisher

Kinship Landing

415 S. Nevada Ave.
Colorado Springs, CO 80903

A gorgeous boutique/unique hotel that offers traditional guestrooms, as well as bunk rooms in a country where most travelers are not yet comfortable with the word “hostel.”

Natural wood, high ceilings and clean lines give Kinship Landing the feeling of a modern campsite where the showers are hot and the mattress is luxurious. Kinship also offers a pet-friendly floor, a bunk suite for a private group, and something they call a camp deck— an AstroTurfed balcony where guests can pitch a tent and take in the mountain views, complete with a private bathroom.

Most of the lobby is dedicated to bar seating that offers everything from coffee and breakfast to dinner and drinks that is open to the public. The owner says the intent was to create a space where travelers and locals can interact, discovering new kinships.

Royal Gorge CO - Three gray, 2-story Royal Gorge cabins run by Echo Canyon
Royal Gorge cabins run by Echo Canyon. Photo credit: Evan Fisher

Royal Gorge Cabins

45054 West U.S. 50
Cañon City, CO 81212

If these lodgings are considered cabins, then consider me a rugged mountain man. The kitchen, bathroom, and furniture are lux and the wifi is fast.

The cabins at Echo Canyon are gorgeous, modern designs, intended to blend indoors and outdoors. The living room has two sets of sliding glass doors and a fireplace that faces both inside and outside. Integrated elements from the surrounding area like railroad ties and railroad spikes are used to create the mantle and coat hangers.

These cabins come in single-bedroom and double-bedroom configurations. The cabin site was converted from an old camp site, and the existing tree placement dictated where the cabins were built– they were able to preserve every tree on the site except 2!

Then there’s glamping, which is wall tents with beds, doors, and windows. Plans expand into more glamping (with bathrooms!). Moving away from RVs on this property.

Royal Gorge Bridge & Park FAQs

Is Royal Gorge Bridge and Park a National Park?

No. It’s owned by Cañon City and run by a private company. However, you can receive a $2 discount and a stamp in your National Park passport if you purchase tickets at the visitor center.

Is the Royal Gorge Bridge the Highest in the World?

No. It was the highest in the world until 2001 when the Liuguanghe Bridge opened in China at a height of 974 feet. It’s still America’s highest suspension bridge and one of the world’s highest suspension bridges at 956 feet. It carried the trademarked nickname “America’s Bridge.”

Where is Royal Gorge Bridge and Park?

It’s located in Fremont County Colorado, at 4218 County Road 3A, Cañon City, CO 81212. That’s about 2.5 hours from the Denver airport and 1.5 hours from the Colorado Springs airport.

About Evan Fisher

Evan Fisher is an engineer and cat dad based in Detroit, Michigan. With a passion for everything environmental, he writes software for electric vehicles and is the recipient of Detroit’s 2022 Green Task Force resident award. He’s happiest on a hike, on a bike, or working with rescue animals. As the son of a family-focused travel writer, Evan grew up flying and road tripping to dozens of North American destinations in order to test their kid-friendliness. The once reluctant, now enthusiastic traveler has a love of historic sites and otherworldly landscapes. Favorite alien vistas include Mammoth Cave in Kentucky, the Badlands in South Dakota, and Haystack Rock in Oregon. Find Evan on LinkedIn.

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