Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Arkansas River Trail, Buena Vista, CO

Although this area is known for its great bike trails, most of them are mountain biking or road biking, whereas, I just like recreational biking.  But I did find one trail which sounded like it would work.
The Arkansas River Trail starts in Buena Vista and is actually on CR-371.  It is about 10 miles long, if you go all the way to the end, but it goes through four tunnels and winds along the Arkansas River, following the old Midland Railroad bed.

About halfway was the Railroad Bridge Recreation Area, so named because of the old railroad bridge which still stands.  The recreation area is part of the Arkansas Headwaters Recreation Area, which spans along 125 miles of the Arkansas River and is run by the Colorado State Parks department.

This was our view most of the ride.

We didn't quite make it the entire way.  About one mile before the end, we turned around and found a picnic table for lunch.  After we got back to Buena Vista the group went their separate ways.  Several of us stayed and looked around Buena Vista.

DeerHammer Whitewater Whiskey is located in Buena Vista, right on Main Street.  They are small, only producing about 25 gallons of whiskey a week.  It is white instead of caramel colored because this whiskey is not aged.  It is also made of 100% malted barley, no corn, no rye.

They do sell it in these cute miniature barrels though.

The owner and distiller gave us a tour and explained his process.  He says they process their whiskey just like the old days, not a lot of automated fancy equipment like the big distillers use.  When I asked how he got into the whiskey business, he said he started making beer, and gradually made the transition to whiskey.  They currently are working on some specialty whiskeys, like a wheat whiskey, and they are currently aging some barrels of whiskey as well.

About a mile from the downtown area, located on the river, is Town Square on South Main.  Besides a group of shops and restaurants, there are challange courses along the river.  You can stop and watch people as they practice and learn how to whitewater kayak or paddleboard.  This was the last of six holes, as they call them.  Each one was progressively more difficult.  If you don't get out here, the next set of rapids down the way is Rainbow Falls, a class III set of rapids.

No one was out kayaking, but this guy was practicing on his paddleboard.

1 comment:

Barbara and Ron said...

Looks like a great bike path. We missed that - maybe next trip.