As you may have guessed from the blog title, we’ve finally got around to visiting Red Rocks!
The Red Rocks Amphitheatre is a large, naturally occurring amphitheatre not far from Denver that is very famous both as a music venue and a park full of beautiful views. Famous musicians who have played there include Jimi Hendrix, The Beatles and my personal favorite Tool, but this is naming just a few!
At 6,450 ft above sea level the Beatles apparently needed oxygen tanks, poor things!
As you can tell from the picture Red Rocks has been around for quite a while, the amphitheatre opened in 1941 and has had regular concerts since 1947. The actual amphitheatre is of course considerably older, and as well as the great views the park is a great place to check out fossils! As an extra bonus Red Rocks is the only naturally-occurring, acoustically perfect amphitheatre in existence, and was once listed as one of the Seven Wonders of the World.
As you can imagine we were pretty hyped to check it out, although we were a little wary of the weather which our car assured us was very hot:
The park has very little shade and the thin air at altitude means that you burn and dehydrate very quickly, but what is life without challenge! We rounded up a lot of water, and slathered on sun screen as fast as we could:
After gearing up, we were off! Between the sun screen, the bug spray and the fact that we were immediately very sweaty we felt a little like we were being marinated, but that didn’t take away from the enjoyment of our arrival one bit. As promised, it is BEAUTIFUL 🙂
The visibility is ridiculous, if you look off in the distance in the picture above you can see Denver in the background (zoomed in below):
The two largest monoliths surrounding the seating area for the concert are Ship Rock and Creation Rock, both of which are over 300 ft tall! The third monolith is Stage Rock, which as you can imagine is behind the stage. It’s hard to get the scale in the picture, but rest assured they’re pretty spectacular.
I should also mention the crazy people that you can see in this picture… as you may know people in Colorado are in insanely good shape, and part of this is because exercise is just so popular as a form of recreation. It’s apparently a fun local activity to start the day with a run up and down the amphitheatre steps, or to run the length of each step in turn before going up to the next one. It was way too hot to be doing such a thing, but power to them!
We checked out the views by walking down some of the steps, and tried not to think about the time when we’d have to walk back up.
There was a truly excellent statue of John Denver at the start of the trail that we had to stop and get a few pictures with…
Once we got the pictures, we were off!
Mercifully we decided to do the shorter of the two trails, so our hike was a mere two miles. The second hike is a brave six miles, so we’ll wait until it cools down a bit for that! On our scenic hike we saw the usual beautiful things:
I will say that while the last of those was definitely beautiful, the bird was not very relaxing. It looked a bit like a vulture and was circling the area, possibly waiting for the weaker hikers to drop off the trail and be eaten. It definitely had an eye of us…
…but happily this story does not end up with us being devoured by predatory birds.
After a great walk we got back to the base of the stairs:
But before long we were back! We finished the hike with a quick victory selfie (in which my husband managed to catch me off guard with a bad joke) and with that done we were ready to be inside.
Before heading out we decided to see the Red Rocks hall of fame, which is quite reminiscent of Hard Rock Cafe, and documents famous musicians who have played the venue.
It also has some large fake instruments on the wall that we had great fun pretending to play…
As well as merchandise donated by various bands. One band in particular gets a special mention!
After one final look at the stage we got back into our boiling hot car and headed home! It was a sweaty day, but definitely a fun one 😀
More soon! Xx