Boise probably isn’t one of the largest cities in the United States. But the capital city of Idaho is arguably one of the best places in America where you can start a road trip that goes through so many different places where outdoor lovers can visit. The summers can get hot and dry while the winters can dip below freezing. But no matter what, Boise is one of those diamonds in the rough that you can visit any time throughout the year.
As you journey south, you’ll be headed deep into the Rocky Mountain range. This road trip will span across three states (including Idaho). However, if you are looking to make a 3 to 5-day road trip out of this, there are plenty of points of interest to check out along the way. Before you know it, you’ll be in the heart of the southern Colorado city of Pueblo. The Centennial State is an outdoor lover’s paradise. If you are in Pueblo, you are always within a few miles of some of the best hiking trails, ski slopes, and parks.
Whether you are in an RV or a van, you can make the most of this trip and create a ton of memories and stories along the way. Let’s get going and hit the road.
You can check this place out while the day before or the day of your trip. Just due south of Boise is the Morley Nelson Snake River Birds Of Prey National Conservation Area. If you love birdwatching, this is the go-to spot where you can pull out your binoculars and witness some of the most majestic and interesting winged creatures that grace our planet. You can take a look at all kinds of hawks, falcons, eagles, and so much more. Watch them in action as they hunt for prey so they can feed themselves and their young. It’s like watching a nature show in real time.
If you are looking for an RV park, you won’t find much of them near Morley Nelson. Your best option would be to return to Boise. One of the best RV parks you should check out is Mountain View RV Park. It’s just off I-84 near the Boise airport. After you’ve finished watching plenty of birds, you might even see some “big birds” coming in and out of the airport.
Can’t get enough birdwatching? The good news, you can still do it again. This time, you have already driven through much of Idaho on I-84 and now have entered the state of Utah. Just north of the city of Ogden is the Bear River Migratory Bird Refuge. Other than birds, you can take a gander at the wildlife that calls this place home. Not only will you see everything from tundra swans to American pelicans, but there are also plenty of deer, coyotes, weasels, and snakes that will surely be a sight to see when you are touring this place by car.
After spending some time here, you can park at some of the campgrounds or RV parks located inside Ogden or just outside of them. There’s a KOA Campground that takes in RVs of almost every size. The even better news: it’s located just a few minutes down the road from the refuge.
What you will probably notice is that Ogden is a city that has a fork in the road. Both directions can take you to Pueblo. But in the interest of the time frame, you might want to hop on I-80 and head towards Wyoming. After driving through Wyoming and probably seeing a ton of buffalo along the way, you’ll come across Medicine Bow-Routt National Forest.
This forest straddles the Wyoming-Colorado state line. This grassland park is a great place for so many year-round outdoor activities. Hiking, walking, biking, photography, and even skiing are just some of the many things that you can do here in the national forest. It doesn’t matter if you are on the Colorado or Wyoming side, you’ll always find something to do on your way to Pueblo.
There are plenty of RV parks in the national forest, but most of them will be on the Colorado side than in Wyoming. They won’t be much out of the way on your route since you’ll be in Colorado anyways. Consider finding one that is just of Colorado State Route 14 since that road will take you to your next POI.
From one national forest to the next, you arrive at Arapaho & Roosevelt National Forest. This place is adjacent to the Rocky Mountain National Park. This forest west of Fort Collins offers plenty of activities that you would expect at any other national park. Plenty of hiking trails are the norm when you are deep in the heart of the Rockies. And you don’t want to miss some of the most amazing views of the mountains. If you have a camera packed for this trip, you better take some pictures.
The national forest is also home to some of the largest lakes in the state of Colorado. Plenty of water activities like boating or kayaking at your disposal. After you’ve done all the hiking, boating, and exploring you can settle in at one of many RV parks along the forest. One awesome place you should probably check out is the River Run RV Resort located in the town of Granby.
Sometimes, it’s good to just go around Denver rather than go through it. No offense to the Mile High City and all (and we dare say it is an awesome place). But there is one more national forest to do hiking and exploring. The Gunnison National Forest is home to many mountains, none of them any less than 5,800 feet. The tallest mountain in the forest stands nearly 14,000 feet. Aside from the number of pictures you can take and trails to hike, you’ll also get a good look at some of the wildlife here. Mountain goats, grizzly bears, and so many different animals that you can observe from a safe distance.
Though Pueblo is a mere three-hour drive east you can either make the trip or crash for a night at one of the RV parks and campgrounds. But if there is one in particular that you cannot go wrong with here or anywhere else in America, it is a KOA Campground. Gunnison has one just located outside of the forest on US Route 50.
Did you know that a two headed calf was born at an Idaho ranch? No joke. In fact, taxidermy of the Deja-Moo can be found in the Idaho State Museum. More than 70 years ago in the small town of Gooding, Idaho was when the calf was born. It had been on display at the museum since 1951 and remains one of the most iconic exhibits to date. Weird way to start this road trip while you are in Boise, right?
While you are in Boise, you can check out some of the RV parks in the capital region. In fact, we have a recommendation for one that we’ll reveal in the next POI (since there’s a good chance you’ll be staying in Boise for another day or two before heading out).
Before you leave Ogden, you might want to check out this place. It might just be the closest thing to Jurassic Park. The only difference is the dinosaurs are just full-sized statues. This park covers eight acres of land and sculptures of any dinosaur you can think of.
Don’t be surprised if you see a T-Rex. And yes, they are huge! This is the perfect place if you want to take some silly pictures of yourself being chased by dinosaurs.
You’ve made it to Pueblo! After all that hiking and exploring, your road trip ends here. Now that you have arrived in Southern Colorado, you can rest and relax. After that, you can spend the day exploring the city. If you still want to hike, there are plenty of hiking trails to check out. You might also want to spend the day at Lake Pueblo State Park if you are searching for some time out on the water.
If you are at the state park, you can camp out there for as long as you are in Pueblo. Otherwise, there are a few other RV parks and campgrounds that are scattered throughout the city.