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Colorado Wilderness in Gateway Canyons

Words by Courtney Kellar
Photos courtesy of Courtney Cox

When couples dream of getting away, most picture a quiet beach on a far away island. Do you and your guests a favor and consider escaping into the wild canyons of Colorado for a truly romantic and isolated experience. Nestled among red rock canyons, the vistas don’t get more stunning than those at Gateway Canyons Resort. Located 45 minutes from the nearest town, it’s a photographer’s dream and offers countless ceremony spots throughout the expansive grounds.

Established by John Hendricks, Founder and Chairman of the Discovery Channel, the resort focuses on taking advantage of its unique geographic location. Gateway’s Adventure Center is an outdoorsman’s dream with all the essentials for river rafting, hiking, off-roading, rock climbing or fly fishing. After a delicious breakfast of buffalo hash at Paradox Restaurant, grab your helmet for an ATV tour of the surrounding canyons. The red dirt roads are otherworldly – it’s like exploring the dusty surface of another planet. An absolute must is a pit-stop by the awesome and authentic dinosaur tracks deep within the canyon. 

The resort’s stables are a true show stopper. Amy Wilkinson, the Equestrian Manager, is a gentle soul who brings out the best in her horses. Even the most novice of riders will become at-ease with the experts.

Take to the air with Gateway’s scenic air tours, a sure-fire way to grasp the immense beauty of this place. Looking to stay more grounded? The resort recently launched their “Driven Experiences” program. After working with a professional instructor, get behind the wheel of a baja-style race truck for a fast and furious race through the landscape.

After so much outdoor adventure, your room will be a welcome respite. With high ceilings, stunning hand-crafted details and one of the most comfortable beds you’ll ever sleep in, you might rethink that fifteenth scheduled activity and opt for staying in to cuddle in front of the fire. Private patios and two-bedroom casitas, opening summer 2013, are perfect for destination wedding crowds and will serve as a home away from home.

With so much to do, don’t forget to take a moment with the one you love to simply sit in the shadows of the surrounding mountains. Soak it all in, because Gateway Canyons is one of those places which is uniquely removed and truly one-of-a-kind.

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