Greetings! My name is Ryan, and I am a P1 student fresh from Hawaii, by way of Seattle, and I am writing to give all prospective students an idea of what there is to do in Colorado when you aren’t buried in books or studying for the next big exam. Here are my top 5 things to do in Colorado when going to SSPPS!
1. Head for the Mountains!
Colorado is famous for its spectacular mountain ranges, but what I found out in my time here is that there is an entire culture built around its special peaks, known as “14-ers.” As the name implies, these are a collection of over 50 different peaks over 14,000 feet in elevation, and summiting each of them earns you a badge of honor and some bragging rights. Each summiting experience spans the gamut of “day hiking” to “bring all the gear,” but is an enjoyable experience for the adventurous. My most recent hike with a group of friends was to Grays Peak in the Front Range. The round trip was about a 9-hour round-trip experience with treks through a beautiful valley up to a lightly snow-sprinkled peak, and gorgeous landscape views to keep you going!
2. Foodie Heaven!
Colorado is in love with delicious foods! At least once a week my roommate and I will hit a random Yelp recommendation for the day’s indulgence. In our gustatory travels, we have found everything from restaurants that truly understand the beauty of breakfast, to paradises of all-you-can-eat sushi, to some of the best ice cream in the land -- and we haven’t even really done any deep diving, yet! If you have a craving, you are liable to find a gem of a dining establishment right around the corner (and the corner after that)!
3. "Drink" in Colorado!
With football season in full swing, you have no doubt seen tons of ads for the stalwart beer, Coors, right? Guess what? You can go take a tour of that brewery down in the adorable town of Golden, Colo.! What’s that -- Coors isn’t your favorite beer? Well then, allow me to blow your mind, because Colorado is also known as the “The State of Craft Beer!” With 158 breweries registered with the Colorado Brewers’ Guild (yeah, there is a brewers’ guild!), you will never get bored with your ice cold brews. What’s even better is that there are some gorgeous beer gardens in the neighborhood (personal recommendation of Lowry Beer Garden) that are always rotating the freshest brewed creations on their taps for your enjoyment between exams, or as a “study aid.”
4. All the Sports! (duh!)
Who doesn’t love some form of sports, right? Obviously, there are the current NFL Champion Broncos kicking off at the Mile High Stadium, the NBA’s Nuggets dunking at the Pepsi Center, and the MLB’s Rockies cracking off line drives at Coors Field. That’s not all, though, because there are also the NCAA Football CU Buffaloes making waves in the Pac-12, the Rapids soccer team that is home to Olympic great Tim Howard, and the NHL Avalanche slinging pucks around the rink in the Pepsi Center. What’s more, these sporting venues are going to be only a ten-minute light rail ride from campus to the historic Union Station in the heart of downtown Denver (no need to fight for parking!)
What’s amazing about my new home is that there are so many hidden treasures to find when you take a trip outside and just follow your heart! I haven’t even mentioned all of the other obvious sites to see like the Denver Art Museum, Red Rocks Amphitheater and the Rocky Mountain National Park, which are worth seeing, but there are so many other places that you can find by exploring your neighborhood, or just peeking in your local magazine -- The Westword or 5280 Magazine. In my travels, I’ve found awesome running trails, amazing music venues and hidden sites and attractions that make Colorado such a rare treasure that I am so incredibly happy that I chose CU Skaggs as my home for the next four years and beyond.
These are just the basics of what your down time may look like in Colorado, but this is just one facet of why SSPPS is one of the best schools in the nation! I can’t wait to meet you guys next year, and I am happy to answer any questions you might have as you progress through your application process. Write a comment below, and I'll get back to you.