Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Cascade Colorado, Welcome To Our Town

Welcome to Cascade Colorado for your Cascade Escapes getaway!  While many nearby towns may be better-known, you do not need to leave Cascade to have a wonderful Colorado getaway.  So we thought we would fill you in on what Cascade has to offer.  Welcome to our town!

Cascade, CO is a small scenic mountain community at the base of Pike's Peak (elevation of 7379 feet/2249 meters above sea level).  Fountain Creek flows off Pike's Peak through town, and indeed the town name comes from the many waterfalls seen in the area.

The town has its own amusement park (Santas North Pole) and Pikes Peak Gourmet Popcorn company featuring 17 year-round flavors of popcorn, and 33 additional flavors which change seasonally throughout the year.

However, the feature Cascade is probably most known for is the Pikes Peak Highway, ascending from Cascade proper to the top of Pikes Peak - over 6700 feet in ascent.

The Highway started as the Fremont Trail in the late 1860s, prompting many to make the trip to the summit for sport.  Even today, the Pike's Peak International Hill Climb in July hosts auto and motorcycle enthusiasts who race to the top.

By 1888, the trail became a carriage road.  Tourists could take a 6-hour carriage ride to the summit of the mountain for $2.50.  Once there, guests enjoyed time in what was then a very extravagant visitor center featuring a carpeted lounge with settees and mirrors.

The actual highway was constructed in 1915, and was financed by Spencer Penrose:  an area philanthropist out of Philadelphia who came to Cripple Creek as a Real Estate office manager and by purchasing Utah land tracts rich in copper.  Penrose was also responsible for the Broadmoor Hotel, Cheyenne Mountain Zoo, and Will Rogers Shrine of the Sun.

The road itself is almost entirely paved at the writing of this post.  The final 3 miles of gravel road are being paved to preserve the land and waters beneath the road from the 150 million pounds of gravel used annually for road maintenance.  As of today, less than a mile remains to be paved.

Please be advised that the air thins even further as you ascend the mountain.  Even those already adapted to the Colorado altitude may have problems with the pressure and air changes caused by the ascent.  Please be aware of your condition at all times and be safe!  There are Visitor Centers with gift shops at the 12 mile marker, 6 mile marker, and summit, which also features an oxygen bar!  Restaruants are located at the historic Glen Cove Inn midway up the mountain, and at the summit, and are open mid-April to late October.

Views from the mountain are absolutely spectacular and will do even more to take your breath away!  In July 1893, Katharine Lee Bates was so inspired by her trip up the mountain that she wrote America the Beautiful after spending time at the summit of Pikes Peak.  There is a plaque commemorating her work at the summit:  Oh beautiful for spacious skies...

Plan for your driving trip to take two to three hours, plus the time you spend sightseeing on the way.  Have at least a half tank of gas, as there are no fueling stations on the mountain.  The road is open during daytime hours year-round, weather permitting.  Toll road fees are $10-12 per passenger 16 years and older (depending on the season), and $5 per child; or $35-40 per carload up to 5 people.  Children 5 years and under are free.

Once you have explored Cascade and made your heroic trip to Pike's Peak and back, your Cascade Escape Pikes Peak, Colorado vacation cabin accommodations will welcome you back to the comfort and peace of town.  Spend the evening in the hot tub where you can view the mountains and almost reach up and touch the stars while recalling your amazing journey to the top of our beautiful mountain.


Rosemary said...

That sounds like a wonderful place. Seems like one week is not enough to enjoy all Cascade Colorado has to offer. I love these kinds of adventures.

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Lauren jonczak said...

Great post. This place does does sound wonderful! My fiance and I were just looking up a few vail vacation homes the other day. We really need a vacation and I want to go somewhere we both have never been before. I will have to send this to him, thanks so much for sharing.

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