On a beastly summer day, when Front Range temperatures soar to three digits, it can be pleasantly temperate in the foothills community about 30 miles west of Denver off Interstate 70. It’s on the Lariat Loop Scenic & Historic Byway, a designated scenic route in the foothills, connecting Golden, Morrison, Lookout Mountain and Evergreen.
And when the sun goes down, you might even need a sweater or light jacket. But cool temperatures aren’t the only reason to visit this verdant village.
Stop in at Creekside Cellars to sample its award-winning wines, and accompany the drinks with a sandwich from the deli. If you eat on the creek-side balcony, the sound of the water alone will cool you off.
Nothing like a cold beer on a hot day? Check out the microbrews at Little Bear Saloon, across the street from the winery. Order a sampler and decide which brew suits your palate. Then order some pub food, sit back and listen to some live music, provided by top Colorado and national bands.
Or grab a pan of Colorado-style pizza at Beau Jo’s. For more upscale food, but not at upscale prices, try Tuscany Tavern.
Visit the Hiwan Homestead Museum, where you can sit under a shady tree and admire the grounds or tour the buildings, which include a 17-room log home, a housekeeper’s cabin, a stone playhouse, a sample guest tent and a pioneer workshop.
And don’t forget the lake. You can rent paddleboats or canoes, bring your own sailboat, or just sit by the lake and listen to the waves lap the shore. Like to fish? Bring your fly-fishing gear and try your luck in Upper Bear Creek.
You also can play golf with a view at the Evergreen Golf Course (but unless you’re also up for a good hike, get a cart). If you are into hiking, there are trails that range from easy to challenging. It’s also a popular place for bicyclists, too.
Looking for a bit of culture? There’s a terrific little local theater company, and there are art gallery walks scheduled the last Friday of each month.
And if you just can’t tear yourself away, consider spending the night at one of several bed-and-breakfast inns, or the Highland Haven Creekside Inn, recently voted one of the top 10 “most romantic” inns by Sunset magazine. The creek rushing past your window will sing you to sleep.
Summer brings a variety of celebrations to Evergreen, including the annual Fine Arts and Fine Crafts Fair.
If You Go
Linda DuVal is a freelance writer based in Colorado Springs.
From the Editors: We spent a heap of time making sure this story was accurate when it was published, but of course, things can change. Please confirm the details before setting out in our great Centennial State.