Route 14 west of Fort Collins, CO

Before he left this morning for his daily bicycle ride my Airbnb host Eric asked me what my plans for the day were.  I told him I was going to stop in the Rocky Mountain National Park, not far away, to get a map and get my bearings.  I also wanted to go to Steamboat Springs which is further west of the Park.

He suggested that rather than go through the Park to get to Steamboat that I go north and take Route 14 instead.  He rides his bike up there frequently and said it is a very nice drive.  Boy oh boy was he right!

Route 14 runs along the Cache la Poudre River (ooh la la… it’s French!), which is known for having an abundance of brown, brook and rainbow trout.  The name is from the French phrase which means “Hide the Powder”.  It was so named after a group of French trappers were forced to bury some of their gunpowder along the river bank when stranded by a snowstorm in the early 1820’s.  The locals have taken liberties with the pronunciation and call it “CASH la POO-ter”, or simply “the Poo-ter”.

What follows are just a few (some may think too many) of the amazing things I saw in the first 15 or so miles of Route 14.  It wasn’t on my radar and should have been.  I’m going to write to National Geographic to ask why it wasn’t in their book (which is my bible).











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