Bailey and Environs
Bailey is a small town nestled in the valley of the North Fork of the South Platte River in the Colorado Rockies. We are located 45 minutes from Denver and half an hour from Red Rocks; close enough to be convenient, but a world away in atmosphere. For you Colorado Trail hikers, we are about 9 miles from the Rolling Creek Trailhead between Segments 3 & 4 and 18 miles from Kenosha Pass between Segments 5 & 6. The town itself has several dining and entertainment establishments, some interesting shops and attractions, and opportunities for resupply and preparation for new adventures. Bailey is surrounded by outdoor recreation opportunities and we encourage you to sample them all.
Mountain Biking: Explore the roads in the area if you like to gravel (County Road 64 leads up into the Pike National Forest), or try a little bit of single track (before the wilderness area) on the Brookside-McCurdy Trail just a few minutes from the Lodge. If you want more, get in the car and head down Wellington Lake Road to the top side of the Buffalo Creek trail system, a network of 20 trails and hundreds of miles of trails famous throughout Colorado (and home to the Bailey Hundo every year). You can rent bikes at Evergreen Mountain Sports in Conifer.
Hiking: The opportunities are nearly endless. Brookside-McCurdy is the closest trailhead (1.5 miles away on County Road 64). The Ben Tyler trailhead is just a few miles south on 285 and is beautiful. The Lost Creek and Mount Evans wilderness areas have a multitude of trails accessible within a 15 minute drive. You can try the Colorado Trail, Staunton State Park (one of the newest in Colorado and only 15 minutes away--good for biking too), Kenosha Pass and Guanella Pass are each within 20 minutes (and both are premier leaf-peeping territory in late September). If you want to go big, Mount Bierstadt and Mount Evans, two of Colorado's "fourteeners," are right in our neighborhood. Not quite that ambitious? Check out several local trails within minutes of the Lodge, including Mt. Bailey.
Water Sports: The river is in your yard. Literally. If you prefer still water, Wellington Lake (up in the mountains) and Bear Creek Lake (down on the prairie) are both within 30 minutes from the Lodge. You can rent your SUP or a hiking raft at Platte River Outfitters in downtown Bailey or lakeside at Bear Creek. Or you can just kick back and fish in the pond!
Swimming: There is an indoor swimming pool at the high school (about 5 minutes south on 285) that is open to the public for lap and open swim. They also have a weight/cardio room available for public use (one admission fee to use both).
Zip Lining: The Treehouse Adventure Park is located just a few hundred yards down Highway 285 from the Lodge. With high aerial adventures galore, it will challenge your balance and your sense of adventure.
Disc Golf: There is a great disc golf course in Bailey at 599 Rosalie Drive, with beautiful scenery on a challenging mountain course. Bring your own gear. You can also hike, mountain bike, run, and e-bike on the property, which is operated by BOERA for the benefit of local schools and students. You can purchase a day pass online at boera.org.
Winter Activities: If we have enough snow, build a snowman in the yard, or snowshoe the property and adjoining national forest (rentals available at Platte River Outfitters-ask Glen for recommendations on other routes) . Ski at Breckenridge, just over an hour away via 285 and Highway 9, and miss all the I-70 traffic. If you like a smaller mountain experience, try Monarch (under 2 hours south) or Ski Cooper near Leadville. You can hit the hot springs at Mount Princeton or Cottonwood (1.5 hours south) on your way back. You can ice skate on the pond at the Lodge with our skates or, if you have your own, try Pine Valley Ranch Park (it is free); if you need to rent, Evergreen Lake is your place.
Dining, Provisioning, and Shopping
There are several dining options in Bailey, many close enough to walk. We recommend you check their websites (you can click through on the links here) during your trip to confirm operating hours, as they vary during the fall and winter. The closest is Riverbend Bistro, just a few hundred feet away and serving Italian-American fare and a selection of beers inside year-round and on a deck overlooking the river in the summer. Cutthroat Cafe is the quintessential small town cafe and where the locals hang out for breakfast. Rustic Station serves Friday and Saturday night prime rib dinners (but get there early as they usually sell out), along with a full menu of lunch and dinner options. China Village has great service and good food in a family atmosphere. Crossroads Pub and Grill in Pine has great pizza and burgers. If you want to venture out a little, the Shaggy Sheep in Grant is great.
If you would like to wet your whistle with a unique Bailey flair, try Mad Jack's Mountain Brewery, our local brewmaster, or Aspen Peak Cellars, a micro-winery offering tours, tastings, and food. Both also have live music and other activities at certain times of the year.
Looking for coffee or ice cream? Try The Knotty Pine, one of our kids' favorite stops for soft-serve and a look around the gift shop. They also serve sandwiches if you are hungry.
If you need to provision for the next stage of your adventure, try Platte River Outfitters or The Knotty Pine, both of which offer a range of outdoor activity supplies. Need some fresh food? Try Rosalie's Market, with a selection of fresh produce, meat, and other goods. Sudz laundromat is in the same center. All are located in downtown Bailey just behind Rustic Station. There is also a Dollar General up Crow Hill with a wider selection of goods.
Want to shop some unique mountain stores right in our hometown? Try the Sasquatch Outpost, with clothing, curios, and a "Sasquatch Experience" unlike any other. You can also check out the Fun and Funky Gallery, featuring local products and artists, right next to the Post Office and next door to the Lodge. River Canyon Gallery on Main Street houses a collection of local artists using a variety of media and is well worth a visit. Debeeze Honey in downtown Bailey has honey, soaps, and candles. Next door is the Platte Canyon Community Partnership resale boutique, benefiting a variety of local charities. About 15 minutes north on 285 you can try King's Emporium for an eclectic collection of home goods, clothing and furniture. And if you like antiques, estate sales, and sifting through other people's treasures, try the Pine Emporium in Pine Grove. It is one of a kind and only 20 minutes away.