The Simple Reason To Love The Beautiful Fall Colors

Fall colors only come once a year. What is it that is so captivating about the annual changing of leaves that comes but once a year? We certainly feel something special each year when the leaves begin to change. It signals our last chances to get outdoors before the cold winter months arrive. There is a sense of urgency in the air. Even though fall signifies the end of the season, it’s also the most beautiful time of year to get out into the mountains. 

 

Fall Colors

 

Fall Colors: Finding Beauty In Death

 

Fall colors signify the death of the tree’s summer leaves. With one final push, the aspens leaves turn to vibrant yellow and oranges as the dye and fall off the trees. Like a grand finale in a fireworks show the changing colors of the leaves is a great way to celebrate the end of summer. Perhaps that is why everyone loves the changing leaves; it signifies a theme that we can all relate to. Even in death we can still find beauty. Like the fall leaves, with the end of one thing comes something even more spectacluar

 

Fall Colors

 

Our Latest Film: Celebrate The Changing Of The Seasons

 

To celebrate the season and inspire others to get out into the mountains, we have created this latest film. Get out on a jeep tour, go for a hike, or even a drive. The call colors won’t last long! Get out and feel the crisp fall air. Lay down in an Aspen grove and watch the leaves slowly rustle to the ground. Perhaps the most importantly, share the experience with your loved ones! 

 

 

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Use This Tool To Pick The Perfect Raft Trip

Latest Film: The 12,000 Peaks You Will See On A Durango Jeep Tour

What You Need To Know About Jeeping In The San Juans

 

Raft Trip Comparison – Use This Tool To Pick The Perfect Raft Trip

Use this trip comparison to help you decide on the perfect raft trip. Mild to Wild offers over 77 different trip options ranging from raft trips, to Jeep Tours. While some of the trips may be straight forward, others, such as many of our raft trips, can get a little confusing in terms of cost, meet location and total time spent on the water. In order to help our guests, we created a nifty spreadsheet for you folks so you can have all of the information in one place. Below is an explanation of each category to make your life even easier!

 

Trip Comparison

 

How to Read Our Trip Comparison Spreadsheet

 

Trip Name:

  • This one is fairly self-explanatory. It has the name of the river and the trip type (usually half and full days).

Adventure Level:

  • Our trips are classified as “mild”, ”intermediate” and “wild”. Our “mild” trips are family friendly while our “intermediate” and “wild” trips are more intense and may have a higher age limit compared to the “mild” trips. In addition, our “intermediate” and “wild” trips will generally feature higher classes of rapids and will also require more physical participation.

Class of Rapids:

  • This refers to the class of rapids as designated by the American Whitewater Association. Class I rapids are the easiest and feature very small waves. Class V rapids are expert level rapids that require a very high level of preparation and experience. For more detailed explanations, please refer to the AWA’s website on the Class of Rapids. The list is on the lower portion of the webpage.

Level of Physical Participation Required:

  • Rafting is similar to hiking in that there are different levels of physical fitness required for different trips. Our more mellow rivers (typically with a lower class rating) require less fitness and physical effort as the obstacles are easy to avoid and the guide can take care of this with their oars. As the class of rapids increase the guides become more reliant on the passengers and need their assistance to help steer the boat downriver. Most times this comes in the form of paddling, but some trips may involve hiking or other physical acts.

Meeting Place

  • With trips in Colorado, Arizona and Utah, it can become confusing figuring out where your trip is departing from. Our meet locations also change, so it important that all of our guests know where their trip is located.

Time on River:

  • Many of our guests like knowing how much time they’ll be spending on a raft and most companies only tell their guests how long the trip will take in total. We like being up front and letting everyone know what to expect on their trip. This in turn makes for a better experience for our guests.

Pricing:

  • Our pricing generally has a kid’s price point, but some trips may not have a kids price because the minimum age for the trip is higher than what our youth pricing ages are or the trip price changes. If there is any question on what the price is, please give our office a call and we’d be more than happy to assist you.

Trip Comparison – Mild to Wild Rafting Trips

 

Trip Comparison

 

Download Comparison Spreadsheet

 

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New Film: Durango Jeep Tour

Durango Fall Travel Guide

 

Durango Jeep Tour: You’ll Travel To The Top Of These 12,000″ Peaks

The Durango Jeep Tour. Releasing our latest film. This video was produced to give you a feel for the stunning terrain you’ll access on the Durango Jeep Tour. Gain an arial perspective of the La Plata mountains you’ll travel up. This tour follows the former mining route of Kennebec pass. You’ll see waterfalls, wildlife, and mining remains. Get a taste of what the tour is like in the film below: 

 

Durango Jeep Tour:

 

The Durango Jeep tour is designed to give travelers a sense of what the beautiful San Juan Mountains are like. Located just thirty minutes outside of Durango, this jeep route is great for half day excursions. Beginning in La Plata canyon the route begins by following a creek up the wide canyon. As the valley begins to narrow the road gets rougher and begins to climb. Look for waterfalls cascading down the exposed rock faces on both side of the road. 

 

Jeep Tour

 

Climbing Kennebec Pass:

 

Once the road begins to steepen and the valley narrows, this is where you’ll need a 4×4. As the road pitches up you’re focus will shift from the scenery to your vehicles ability to navigate the terrain. The road travels up the mountainside in feats and pitches. Leaving you with plenty of places to stop in take in the surroundings before tackling the next pitch. 

 

Jeep Tour

 

As you raise above tree line the last few remnants of the area’s mining days come apparent. Stop to explore old iron relics. It will be your last respite before the final pitch to the top of Kennebec pass. If you are traveling mid summer take in the wildflowers. For those lucky enough to go in fall, you’ll see an abundance of vibrant fall colors. As you make the final push to the top keep your eyes peeled for small marmots and mountain goats hiding in the rocky terrain. 

 

Looking for a more remote jeep tour? Check out the Silverton Tour

 

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Durango Fall Visitors Guide

Community Events An Opportunity To Make A Genuine Impact

With a summer’s worth of fun river adventures and community events done, our eyes are set to next season. It is nice to be able to look back at where we started and where we have come from. Like a river our season has been marked by periods of fast paced. Then after the rapid hectic days there are times where it has calmed down. Now is a calm time. Just like a river every day is special with a new adventure always around the corner. It’s good  to reflect on some of the community events we hosted that have brought people from all walks of life together.

 

COMMUNITY EVENTS

 

Here are Mild to Wild we believe it is important to make use or resources help make a positive impact on the community. As a tourist business we rely heavily on the Durango community to help produce a great product for our guests. As a sign of thanks we hosted three events this year. For each event we wanted to help bring a niche of our community together to have some fun out on the water. Continue reading for more details on each  community event.

 

Community Events – Raft for Hope

 

COMMUNITY EVENTS

 

Our first special event of the summer was the Raft for Hope event which sought to bring awareness to the unsettling number of suicides in Durango. Raft for Hope was created to not only bring awareness to this issue, but to raise funds for the First United Methodist Church so they could assist in providing counseling and support for all members of the Durango community. We were blessed to see such a high turnout in support of the event and of those affected by suicide. We greatly thank the community for their willingness to assist each other in times of need and for publicly showing their support of such a difficult issue.

 

Community Events – Pride Float

 

COMMUNITY EVENTS

 

Two days after our Raft for Hope event, we held our First Annual Raft for Pride event. This event was characterized by an amazing crowd who had a relentless spirit and outlandish dress. We were excited to have every raft completely filled for this event and are very proud to have been able to host such a special and wild trip. We would also like to give special thanks to our very own Emily Benton for coordinating both the Raft for Hope and Raft for Pride events and ensuring their success!

 

Community Events – Durango’s Float to Work Day

 

COMMUNITY EVENTS

 

The most recent event sponsored by Mild to Wild was the Durango Float to Work Day put on by Get Around Durango. This event was created to encourage participants to ditch their cars at home and have a fun commute to work via the Animas River. This river is one of the city’s greatest resources for recreation and is open to the public making it a great place for all ages to have fun. We would like to thank Get Around Durango for their tireless work organizing such a wonderful event for the whole city to share!

 

 

As our summer changes to fall we turn toward the mountains once again. Although this time it is not the rivers we seek, but the spectacular scenery as the aspens provide us with a show that cannot be rivaled by any other natural phenomena.  We would like to take a moment to reflect not only on the last three months, but on our lives as we have all overcome our own struggles that in turn shaped us into who we are today. We thank the one-of-a-kind community in Durango for their unwavering support of each other and look forward to joining each and every one of you in the quest to make Durango better for everybody.

 

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Staff’s Favorite Trips – What You Need to Know

A Guide to Durango’s Best Fall Colors

Staff’s Favorite Trip – What You Need To Know

What’s your favorite trip? If you’ve ever booked a trip or called in to Mild to Wild, chances are you’ve spoken with a member of our office staff. While us office folk don’t get out on the river as much as our guide counterparts, we still have a thirst for adventure. With the rafting season well past the halfway point we decided to survey our office staff and see what their top three favorite trips Mild to Wild offers are.  

 

Favorite Trip

 

Staff’s Favorite Trip

 

Number Three

 

Starting our Top Three favorite Trip with third place, we have the Piedra River. Pool drop rapids and narrow twisting waterways characterize the Piedra while offering a great balance between exciting Class IV rapids and beautiful wilderness. Also found on the Piedra are natural riverside hot springs which provide a great place to relax while enjoying a fresh locally made lunch. These features make a trip on the Piedra a great trip for those looking to take their whitewater experience up a notch to an intermediate while still enjoying a beautiful and fun day on the water!

 

Favorite Trip

 

Number Two

 

In second place is the Upper Animas River. The Upper Animas is the most difficult section of river to run in South West Colorado featuring Class III through Class V rapids and is the definition of a “high adventure” trip. With some sections only accessible by the Durango Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad, the Upper Animas River is a very special trip you must do at least once in your life. Our staff loves this section of river for its remoteness and relentless rapid sections that is the pinnacle of any whitewater experience making it the perfect second choice for a favorite trip.

 

Favorite Trip

 

Number One

 

Taking the number one spot for our Mild to Wild Office Staff favorite trip is our inflatable kayaks known as “Duckies”. Duckies are a great way to increase the adventure level of an otherwise mild trip on the Lower Animas River by putting you in a single seat kayak which sits much lower on the water than a raft. This means you get splashed more by the waves on the river which is one of the best parts about being on the water! In addition, you have the ability to make your trip as adventurous or mild as you’d like because you are in control of the kayak making it great for more mature “kids” like us Office Staff that have different levels of adventure from each other.

 

Favorite Trip

 

As you can tell. Our Office Staff have a great sense of adventure and love getting deep in the outdoors to experience natures finest. Thanks for tuning in. We hope you enjoyed reading about our top three favorite trips!

 

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Durango Guide To The Best Dates For Fall Colors In Durango

The Durango guide to the fall season. Are you looking for a guide to visiting Durango in the fall? Well this is the resource for you. In this Durango guide we’ll cover the best dates to visit Durango to expereince the fall colors. We’ll give you a breakdown of the can’t miss fall events and finally share with you our favorite fall adventures in Durango. Dive in. This Durango guide is here to help you get ready for a trip to Durango this fall!

 

Durango Guide

 

Durango Guide – The Best Dates For Peak Fall Colors

 

There are a few factors that come into play when determining when the peak fall colors will arrive. That’s why you’re reading this Durango guide after all. The main component to achieving the vibrant yellow’s and oranges is air temperature. A chemical reaction occurs in the Aspen leaves when the outside air temperature starts to reach freezing temperatures at night. Generally Aspen tree’s take a couple weeks of freezing temperatures to reach peak color. Because of this peak fall colors in the Durango high country arrive during the last week of September and the first week of October. If you want to see the Durango hillsides covered in flaming yellow and orange, Plan your visit for the end or September. 

 

Durango Guide

 

Durango Guide – Can’t Miss Fall Events

 

If you are luck enough to visit Durango in the fall, there are a couple events that are worth trying to hit. While there is always something going on in Durango, we think these are the real standouts. First up is the Autumn Arts Festival. This street fair style event draws in artist from across the region to display their works. Stroll the 100 fine arts & fine craft booths, enjoy live entertainment on the mainstage, local food booths and a children’s Creation Station for family friendly activities. The other event that makes this Durango Guide is the Durango Oktoberfest. Located at Purgatory resort, this event is perfect way to kick back and enjoy a festival atmosphere in the mountains. Featuring beer provided from local breweries, food vendors, art booths, games, and live music. Oktoberfest is a family friendly event. 

 

Durango Guide

 

Durango Guide – Fall Activities

 

Alright. Know you know the best time to visit Durango in the fall. We gave you a couple fun event to check out. Now we going to share with you a couple of our favorite activities to do in the fall here in Durango. First up is a jeep tour. With options for a tour in Silverton or Durango, this is the best way to see the fall colors. Get up high. Have a guide show you all the best vistas and get that perfect fall shot. If you are up for some exercise, then getting out on a fall hike is gonna be the best bet for you. For awesome vistas and aspen groves, we recommend Engineer Mountain trail. Since it is hunting season be sure to wear some bright colors. The weather is generally sunny in the fall. You’ll get the clearest sky in the mornings, so get an early start. 

 

Durango Guide

 

We hope this Durango Guide gives you some helpful info to get your Fall trip to Durango going. Need more info. Give us a shout at Mild to Wild Rafting and Jeep Tours

 

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The Essentials You’ll Need On A River Trip

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A Free Guide To The Essentials You’ll Need For River Trip Comfort

The best part to any river trip is escaping from everything by completely immersing yourself in nature. No phones to distract the kids, no nagging coworkers, no alarm other than the rising sun.  The worst part: the escape from EVERYTHING. No padded bed to keep you from morning back pains, no hot running water for showers, no air condition to escape the heat. As unfortunate as I have now made it seem, river trips are not nearly that bad. The key to a successful outing is knowing what to bring.

 

River Trip

 

River Trip Essential: Ice

 

Whether you are doing the trip by yourself or with a company, ice is crucial for sanely surviving the heat. Trust me, nothing is better than grabbing a cold drink after a long day. Without the ice you are stuck drinking, at best, lukewarm beverages that will make you miss your fridge and air conditioning more than anything.  Aside from drinks, ice keeps your food fresh and is a great way to cool down on your float. A step even closer to comfort would be not needing to worry about packing enough ice, and instead going on a guided trip that you only need to bring personal essentials.

 

River Trip

 

River Trip Essential: Lotion

 

On the river, your skin will be in a perpetual state of dryness from the over exposure of sun and water. Now, unless you have glorious skin that maintains itself in all conditions, bring lotion. You’re going to be dirty on this trip, no doubt, but that doesn’t mean you have to feel gross. It seems like an unbelievably obscure thing to be on a list for river trip essentials, but once your in the middle of a canyon with dry palms or scaly legs, you’ll be wishing you had a small tube in your life jacket.

 

River Trip

 

River Trip Essential: Paco Pad

 

A good nights sleep is essential for a crabby free day. If you wake up with neck pain or after a night of tossing and turning you will be much less inclined to laugh and paddle your way down the river. Paco pads are a brand of quality, inflatable pads that are the perfect ratio of comfy and easy to pack. If you aren’t bringing your own, or you quite simply don’t own a paco pad, I still 10/10 recommend having some sleeping pad. Even if its just one night that you are camping on the river side, you feel the rocks and sticks far more than you would think. Whatever you do, bring something to put between you and the ground, even if you need to rent one.

 

River Trip

 

River Trip Essential: Sandals 

 

Unless you are a fan of slicing your feet open on sharp rocks, you need shoes for the river. I know I keep doing branding, but a Colorado classic is in fact the Chaco. There are lots of different, equally amazing brands—Teva, Keen, Colombia—but I do recommend getting strappy sandals. They not only give you an awesome tan that you can show off to your friends, but it will allow you to feel the sand and water between your toes while protecting your feet. Sometimes you don’t have to sacrifice style for comfort, just get some water sandals.

 

River Trip

 


River Trip Essentials: Chums

 

Whether clear or overcast skies, the sun will find a way to shine down right on top of you. Even more inconveniently is that the water will reflect the rays of light right into your eyes. What’s the best solution to this problem? Sunglasses. Yet, anything you bring on the water has a decent chance of floating away. You have two options. One, bring cheap sunglasses and accept that you might lose them and have to continue your float without protection. Or two, BRING A PAIR OF CHUMS.  Maybe you’ve never heard of them, or you might think they look silly, but you’ll be the one laughing when you’re the only one left on your boat with sunglasses. Honestly though, they are relatively cheap for the immense relief they will bring. Definitely worth any money spent.

 

River Trip

 

River Trip Essentials: Not Your Nicest Clothes

 

There is no denying it, you will get wet and you will get dirty. If you spend the entire trip trying to keep your nice, new shirt pristine, you will just be fighting a loosing battle. Comfort is only attainable in any situation when you recognize how to adapt and prepare yourself. Bring clothes you can decorate with splatters of mud and get soaked as you splash through the waves. Instead of being upset by ruining a shirt, look at the obscure red stain from the clay as an authentic souvenir that no one else has. Worse comes to worse, you can just throw out your dirty clothes after the trip because, guess what, they aren’t your favorite!

 

River Trip

 

River Trip Essential: A Positive Attitude 😜

 

As cliché as it sounds, your attitude about the trip will determine whether or not you enjoy yourself. If you hop on the boat not wanting to get wet or dirty, a river trip is not the vacation for you. While you are on the river, take the time to recognize how lucky you are to be floating between canyons that have been around for hundreds of years carved from the very river you are on. The river is an untamable beast that you get a unique opportunity to experience first hand, whatever the class of rapid. Go on the boat remembering this, and no amount of dirt or sun can ruin the experience for you.

 

River Trip

 

If done right, a river trip might produce memories that you cherish for the rest of your life. And best of all, you now have an insider’s list of what to bring along to make it an amazing trip. Follow the list and you will look like a pro that has done this a hundred times before. So what’s stopping you? Go ahead and find the trip for you!

 

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Get Out On A Raft & Four Other Affordable Ways To Avoid The Durango Heat

Get out on a raft! Durango is an awesome place to explore and try new adventures. Its location in the mountains of Southwest Colorado provides a variety of opportunities such as pristine mountain bike trails, excellent rock climbing. Like many mountain towns, Durango can experience hot summer weather that creeps into the high 90s and even the 100s. In order to beat the heat, here are four ways that Durango locals and visitors use to cool off while still having fun.

 

Raft

 

Whitewater Raft Durango

Durango white water rafting is a great way to cool off and is a more adventurous alternative to swimming in a pool. The Lower Animas River runs right through the heart of Durango. It offers a great way to experience the city while staying active. The river is fed by cool and refreshing snowmelt that keeps you comfortable as the outdoor air temperature rises. The class II and class III rapids provide rafters with a fun white water experience while making trips great for beginners and families.

 

Raft

 

For Those That Don’t Want To Raft – Silverton Jeep Tours

 

Silverton Jeep Tours are another great way to get out of the Durango heat. A Jeep Tour in Silverton provides a different experience by venturing into the “high-country” of the San Juan Mountains. The summer months are a great time to see wildlife and wildflower blooms that have been hidden by the snow all winter. Staying high and dry might seem a little contradictory. The town of Silverton lies at 9,300’ and the higher elevations experience cooler climates making a Jeep Tour a great way to get out of the Durango heat.

 

Raft

 

Durango Breweries

 

The breweries in Durango offer a more relaxing way to stay out of the heat. Opposed to the more active alternatives such as Durango white water rafting and Jeep Tours. Durango is home to a multitude of microbreweries placed all over town. Nearly all of the breweries feature a kitchen as well. This provides excellent food to pair with your drink of choice. Add a brewery tour post raft trip! Durango also boasts the highest number of restaurants per capita in the United States meaning you have plenty of options to choose from. The restaurants in town are very family friendly. A great activity for all ages.

 

Raft

 

High Country Hikes and Watering Holes

 

The area surrounding Durango offers a large variety of hikes up at higher elevation. The higher elevation helps cool the temperature down. The elevation can make easy hikes become more difficult to those who aren’t acclimated to the altitude. It’s always a good idea to bring more water than normal since the mountain climate is often very dry. Cascade Creek and Adrenaline Falls are popular destinations that are beautiful anytime of the year. Both water falls can be accessed via moderate hikes. Durango locals also head out to the beaches spread out along the Animas River. Make a trip north of town to Bakers Bridge to cool off.  While there’s no official address, a quick Google search for Bakers Bridge will pull up its location. If you’re having difficulties finding information on any of the locations, ask a local. The staff at Mild to Wild are happy to help. 

Raft

 

            As the locals know, there are numerous activities to choose from ranging from riding a raft on the whitewater or exploring the high country to grabbing a beer with friends then relaxing by the river. No matter what your adventure level or age, it is guaranteed that Durango and Southwest Colorado will have something new and exciting to offer no matter what the weather is like outside.

 

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Everything You Need to Go Jeeping in the San Juans

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The Ultimate Way To Expereince Beautiful Southwest Colorado

See Southwest Colorado from a different point of view! Have you always dreamed about going on a jeep tour? Wanted something a little milder than the rock hopping featured in Moab? We have the trip for you! Join Mild to Wild on a Jeep Tour following old mining and backcountry service roads in Southwest Colorado where discovering the scenery and history of the area is the number one agenda.

 

Southwest Colorado

 

The Two Best Jeep Trips in Southwest Colorado

 

Here at Mild to Wild we offer two different Southwest Colorado jeep tours. The first is a La Plata Canyon and Kennebec Pass Adventure. This trail features cascading waterfalls in the early season, gorgeous wildflowers in late summer. You’ll catch stunning fall colors in September and early October. Just minutes from Durango, you’ll feel as if you are on top of the world! The second jeep tour follows the Mining History around Silverton, CO.  

 

Now that you know about the best tours in the Durango area, here’s a quick rundown of the vehicles you’ll ride in. These are the best custom vehicles to tackle the San Juan mountains.                                                                                                                                 

The Best Vehicles To Explore the Mountains of Southwest Colorado 

 

The Mountain Safari

 

Picture1

 

The Mountain Safari Vehicle is an open aired vehicle that is perfect for the old mining roads that weave through the mountains of Southwest Colorado. Featuring three rows of comfortable seating, the Mountain Safari Vehicle is ideal for large groups and families. The removable canvas top allows for a great view and can either let the sun in on warm days or act as protection from the occasional monsoons. Climbing up into the mountains you will already feel as if you are climbing to the top of the world, but with the seats raised above the top of the jeep, you will really be at the top. The raised seats and open top give you amazing 360-degree views so make sure you have your camera ready!

 

The Pinzguar

 

Southwest Colorado

 

The Pinzgaurs are high-mobility all-terrain 4WD (4×4) and 6WD (6×6) military utility vehicles. Featuring u-shaped seating, Pinzgaurs offer stunning 360-degree views of the Southwest Colorado mountains while sitting in comfort. In addition to their unique look and history, these off road vehicles are perfect for larger groups and families as well as different weather conditions. When the sun is shining, the open aired roof of the Pinzguar lets in a refreshing breeze, but if an afternoon monsoon rolls in, we have a solution! The removable top can quickly be replaced again, allowing the tour to continue.

 

Southwest Colorado

 

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Everything You Need to go Jeeping in the San Juans

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Everything You Need to Know About Jeeping in The San Juan Mountains

Travel in the San Juan Mountains can be one of the most memorable adventures of your life. Whether you’re traveling by train, car, mountain bike or hiking, there are always ways to prepare yourself for traveling through rugged high country terrain. In this instance, we will look at modifications you should make to your vehicle to ensure you safe travel through the San Juan Mountains and other Jeep Trail tours. For travel in the mountains, you should make sure you have a 4wd capable vehicle as it provides you a good platform to start with. Here at Mild to Wild we rely on Jeeps, Light Trucks, and SUV’s. They all provide excellent traction on slippery surfaces due to their light weight.  Short wheelbases. allow tight maneuvers around mountain switchbacks. Once we have a solid foundation of a vehicle we make a few modifications to get it trail ready. 

 

San Juan Mountains

 

Your Vehicle Must Have These to Travel the San Juan Mountains Backroads

 

Tires are an essential part of your vehicle. They are the only link between your car and the ground.  They provide all of the traction and grip that keep your car going where you want to go. For travel through the San Juan Mountains, I highly recommend purchasing an all-terrain style tire. These types of tires offer superior off-road traction and are essential to maintaining grip on uneven and slippery surfaces. Areas such as Silverton frequently have snow and can often be more enjoyable when done as a guided tour. For those who have vehicles with large fender wells (the part of the vehicle that is cutout to fit the tires) I recommend using oversized tires to increase the overall ground clearance. Beware, if too big, oversize tires can cause problems such as premature wear on your vehicle. Check with a local tire shop or online to determine compatibility with your vehicle.

 

San Juan Mountains

 

 

A lift kit can be used in conjunction with oversized tires to increase the ground clearance of a vehicle. Lift kits work by lifting the body of the car further away from the ground through a variety of methods known as suspension lifts and body lifts. By lifting the vehicle away from the ground, you reduce the likelihood of hitting your vehicle on rocks and other obstacles that are frequently encountered in the San Juan Mountains. Contact your local off-road company, off-road enthusiast group or do a quick online search if you’re interested in learning more about each type of lift or to check compatibility with your vehicle.

 

San Juan Mountains

 

Now that we’ve covered the basics of vehicle modification, let’s jump into essentials you should bring with you while on your adventure.

 

Essential Items the San Juan Mountains

 

As a backcountry traveler, you may encounter some situations where you find yourself stuck or without assistance that you would find on a normal paved road. The following essential items will come in handy if you happen to find yourself in an unfavorable situation.

 

San Juan Mountains

 

  • First Aid Kit: Every car should have a basic first aid kit that is able to treat injuries. This is an item you should never leave home without as it could potentially save someone’s life if you are in an area that isn’t easily accessible to emergency personnel. There are many pre-packaged kits that are available for purchase as well as online guides which can help you construct your own and save a few bucks.

 

  • Shovel: A shovel is a great item to have with you. It is useful for digging yourself out of a snow bank, or can be used as a hammer if you’re left with no option. A small fold-up shovel is preferred as it is easy to store in your vehicle and allows access to tight areas you wouldn’t be able to reach with a full-size shovel.

 

  • Tow strap and D-ring: The tow strap and D-ring are something you shouldn’t ever leave home with. In the event that you get stuck and can’t dig yourself out, a tow strap will allow other vehicles to safely pull you out. The D-ring is super handy for attaching the tow strap to a vehicle that might not necessarily have tow hooks available.

 

  • Hi-lift Jack: A hi-lift jack is a super handy piece of equipment to have. Not only can it be used to lift your vehicle up in the air to change a flat tire, but it can also be setup to be used as a winch to pull yourself out of a sticky situation when another vehicle may not be present or capable of pulling you out.

 

  • Basic Tool Kit: A basic tool kit will allow you to perform minor repairs to your vehicle. This could be anything from tightening a loose lug nut to replacing a broken fan belt. You never know what you’ll encounter in

 

  • Jumper Cables: These are very hand to have when travelling in the San Juan Mountains. You never know when you might find your old battery dead from the cold of winter and in need of a jump. Jumper cables are also a great way to make new friends and become the hero of the day when you come across a stranded motorist in need of a jump.

 

  • Water: This should be a given, but a large container of water in invaluable in the mountains, especially the dry environment of the San Juan Mountains and South West Colorado in general. It can be used to refill personal water containers or be used to refill an overheating radiator.

 

  • Clothing: Having spare clothing comes in very handy when the weather changes from 90 degrees and sunny to raining and 50 degrees. Rain coats and light layer-able jackets are super nice to have keeping you comfortable in every weather situation.

 

  • Travel Partner and Plan: Our last tip for you all is to make a plan, tell a trusted friend or family member and make sure you travel with another person or vehicle. While the items listed above are useful to have, they are worthless if you don’t have an able-bodied person to use them. Having a travel partner will help you think more objectively in sticky situations and having another vehicle can be used to get you unstuck as well as carry more equipment

 

San Juan Mountains

 

Hopefully this information if helpful and provides better insight as to how one might prepare for travel through the San Juan Mountains. Our vehicles here at Mild to Wild have all of these modifications making them excellent choices for high-country tours. There are many modifications and items beyond what are listed here that can be done to make a vehicle capable in more rugged terrain; these items are only the bare bones items for travel in the San Juan Mountains. Make sure you do you due diligence and research the area you intend to travel to ensure you have the necessary items needed for a safe adventure.

 

San Juan Mountains

 

If a high-country adventure sounds interesting, but you don’t have suitable vehicle or feel comfortable traveling in the mountains by yourself, head on over to our website to see all of the locations accessible through a guided tour.

 

 

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