If you do only one wilderness thing on your vacation to Colorado, this will give you an excellent example of the best of Colorado. It has all the trees and mountains that make this a heavenly state, but what makes Peak-to-Peak unique is that the road is about 9,000 feet high the whole route! This is a well maintained road, 40 miles long, speeds up to 50 mph, like one that you would see in town, but make a point of stopping along the way and enjoying the vistas...yes, they are grand VISTAS. There's light traffic, and cars and bikes are welcome. (Be warned that in winter it is closed during bad storms). Before I moved here, I had a day off from my Denver conference and I took this road (again) and it convinced me to finally move here. It is especially scenic in the fall when the brilliant yellow Aspen leaves are set against the dark evergreens and the incredible deep blue sky. Color peak is usually mid to late September. You can catch the road from Lyons (hwy 7) or Estes Park(hwy 72) to the north; or Boulder (hwy 119) to the east; or the casino towns of Black Hawk and Central City to the south (take I-70 from Denver). If you wish to avoid the gambling towns, travel via Golden (hwy 6) to the south. On the route you will pass a handful of tiny towns, but there are a couple of quaint small towns worth stopping at, with typical homey cafes and a few small stores (Allenspark and Nederland). Nederland has more shops and a museum, but the highlight is the newly restored carousel ride, only $1. (Some places have limited hours in the winter). The two towns are somewhat picturesque and have a small river running through them. You will be driving through (free) Roosevelt National Forest (but you will see some rare homes and businesses, mainly near towns). Other parks/roads that you might visit another day (camping, backpacking, etc) are Brainhard Lake, Switzerland Trail, Long's Peak (the tallest in the national park), and Indian Peaks Wilderness; or, get a map of the many reservoirs and trails in the area as they are easy to miss. But the highlight will probably be Malo Church, a Chapel on a giant rock, and it's made of stone. Pope John visited it here and did a little bit of skiing in the area. The trip can take you from 1 hour to 3 hours, plus lunch time. Watch the road signs as the route # changes three times. It's worth buying a camera, if you forgot yours, as it's a route you will want to remember forever and share.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.