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YMCA of the Rockies has two centers in Colorado-- Snow Mountain Ranch and Estes Park Center-- and both offer a bonanza of recreational activities during summer-time. Participate as much or as little as you like in scheduled programs, sign the kids up for outdoorsy day camps; or just go take a hike in the woods.
Both locations offer lodge accommodations, and cabins of many sizes, fully equipped with cooking and eating utensils, linens and towels. The 5-bedroom cabins can sleep 12. Estes Park options range from low-priced "rustic cabins" to 4-bedroom vacation homes, to 8-bedroom Reunion Cabins. Check YMCA of the Rockies for rates. (Tip: you may have a better chance of booking a cabin if you become a YMCA member first.)
Snow Mountain Ranch
The Snow Mountain Ranch has 5100 acres, summer day camps, and way too much to do. Here's a sample:
- Kiva Center indoor recreation offers (at no additional charge) find roller-skating, basketball, volleyball, ping-pong, foosball, weights, stair stepper and exercise bike
- craft shop (-fees vary by activity)
- indoor swimming pool with wading pool
- canoeing (small rental fee), fishing
- mini-golf, tennis, volleyball, , horseshoes, softball, biking, 18-hold disk golf course, archery, horse-riding
- family zip line, High Challenge Course, climbing wall
- day camps and childcare, ages 2 years to 16 years
Estes Park Center
Estes Park has 860 acres 65 miles northwest of Denver, and close to Rocky Mountain National Park. It's equally impressive activities include:
- craft shop with two sections, one for kids 9 years old and younger, the other for kids 10 years old and up. An adult must accompany kids under 12
- indoor swimming pool, wading pool
- lake fishing (kids 14 and under)
- roller skating, basketball, volleyball, mini-golf, tennis, horseshoes, game room (pingpong, foosball, etc.), library with kids' books, museum in a 1924 guest lodge and a 1905 log cabin
Many of these activities are free except for an equipment deposit.
Other family activities include:
- rock-climbing (age 12 and up)
- rafting trips
- Challenge Courses (ground level, and "High elements" 35 feet of the ground with wire cables and platforms between trees)
- family programs such as: Animal Detective, archery, hikes, bingo, night hikes, family relays, and lots more
Weekly day camps are offered kids are offered during summer, for ages three right on up to high-school kids.
Note that travelers on the move can drop in for the day (at a membership fee of $3 a family). But you'll probably wish you were having a much longer stay!
Both centers at YMCA of the Rockies are open year-round, and offer some great seasonal weekends, at Halloween, Thanksgiving, and during the Holiday Season. Sign up early!
For more info about special weekends and other activities, see the YMCA of the Rockies site, and check TripAdvisor.com for visitor comments --seems like a well-loved place.
-Check prices for Estes Park Center and for Snow Mountain Ranch at Kayak.com
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