Located on the western edge of Colorado, Grand Junction is a small, high-desert town that attracts outdoor enthusiasts for easy access to area skiing, hiking and mountain biking. While most visitors to the area come for outdoor recreation, Grand Junction and the surrounding areas also offer museums, art galleries and around two dozen wineries.
Grand Junction’s biggest draw is the Colorado National Monument, a scenic array of cliffs, canyons and plateaus encompassing some 20,500 acres. It’s a great place for wilderness lovers, owing to spectacular views of the rugged terrain. Wildlife watchers will delight in views of birds, lizards and desert bighorn sheep.
Outdoor Adventures Galore
Outdoor recreation is king in the Grand Junction area, with snow sports in the winter and ample opportunities for hiking and mountain biking in summer months. Big draws include Powderhorn Bike Park, which features over 13 miles of exciting mountain biking trails. If you prefer relaxed currents of water to winding trails, set out for the James M. Robb-Colorado River State Park, a string of stunning lakes situated along the banks of the Colorado River. Drop a line for bass or northern pike in this tranquil setting.
Grand Junction Under Foot
Hikers have even more options in the area. Easy strolls include Devils Kitchen Trail, a 1.5-mile-long jaunt with great views of golden-red boulder formations. Alternatively, the Window Rock Trail, a half-mile loop, offers gorgeous views out over the canyon. Other easy hikes include the trails at Dominguez-Escalante National Conservation Area, known for its well-preserved petroglyphs. To work up a sweat, consider the Mount Garfield trek, a 4-mile round-trip journey with an elevation gain of around 2,000 feet.
Travelers who love history should stop by the Museum of the West right in the heart of town. Discover a variety of artifacts, from Anasazi pottery to an 1800s-era stagecoach. Art lovers should try to plan their trips to coincide with the first Friday of the month, when local art galleries and many shops extend hours.
Grand Junction Wine Country
Visitors may be surprised to learn that the Grand Junction area is home to one of Colorado’s two viticulture areas: the Grand Valley AVA. There are more than 20 wineries in the area, with tasting rooms open throughout the year, and plenty of local operators offering bicycles and horse-drawn carriages to enhance the experience. Most of the wineries in the area are in and around nearby Palisade, though the city of Grand Junction has vintners of its own.
For More Information
Visit Grand Junction
Colorado Tourism Office