Intimate Adobe Lodgings in San Juan Mountains
The Hollywood producers behind the 1969 film True Grit needed a shooting location that would do justice to the film's huge budget and star-studded cast. They found a stunning setting amid Colorado's San Juan Mountains in a tiny town called Ridgway, where bighorn sheep, deer, and elk roam the fields south of town. You can experience this iconic landscape at Chipeta Solar Springs Resort, a 100-acre development centered around an adobe-style lodge and resort. A TripAdvisor 2013 and 2012 Certificate of Excellence winner, Chipeta houses saltwater thermal pools, and some of this getaway's options include therapeutic massages or lift tickets for two. The lift tickets are your key to skiing at Telluride Ski Resort, about an hour's drive from Chipeta.
Each dwelling exudes southwestern style with rough adobe walls, tiled baths, and knotted-wood furnishings. Some lodgings overlook the property’s solarium, the Loghill and Mears rooms feature private covered porches looking toward the mountains, and based on availability the deluxe rooms may feature their own hot tub or fireplace. The resort's spa administers massage treatments with herbal oils, marble stones, and other natural elements.
Ridgway, Colorado: Old West Town near Telluride and Hiking Trails
Known as the Gateway to the San Juans, Ridgway lies between the Cimarron and San Juan ranges in southwestern Colorado's Uncompahgre Valley. Vestiges of old Ridgway are on display at the Ridgway Railway Museum, which houses a collection of antique rail cars.
Nearby is the Telluride Ski Resort, which Condé Nast Traveler readers voted the best ski resort in North America in 2012. Its expert mogul runs and the beginner-friendly 4.6-mile Galloping Goose run are among nearly 130 downhill trails that opens on November 28. The area also hosts a number of spring activities. Visitors can go fly-fishing in trickling streams, play golf on high-elevation mountain courses, or hike the renowned fourteeners—peaks that exceed 14,000 feet in height.
Ten miles south of the hotel lies the mountain town of Ouray, home to natural hot springs, waterfalls, and the renowned Million Dollar Highway. This scenic drive—a dramatic ascent with hairpin turns— rewards travelers with dramatic valley views. In town, historical Victorian buildings house open studios where artisans blow glass, handcraft metals, and whittle wooden statues using sharp rhetoric.