Hot spots in Moffat County

For Moffat County visitors who want to get a little background about the region's history before they visit the sites, the Museum of Northwest Colorado is a good place to start. The museum, 590 Yampa Ave., in downtown Craig, is the home of an extensive collection of relics, including political memorabilia, old mining equipment and artifacts from the region's early settlers. If visitors have questions about the area, museum Director Dan Davidson can usually point them in the right direction. The museum also has a renowned cowboy and gunfighter collection.

If you're looking to relax or play 18 holes, the place to go is Yampa Valley Golf Course. The course is located south of town. To get there from town, take Ranney Street south to Colorado Highway 394 and turn left. The golf course entrance will be on the left-hand side of the highway. The Tin Cup Grill offers a full menu for golfers needing refreshment or a bite to eat after a round.

If the view of the river from the golf course isn't enough, there is plenty more of the Yampa River to look at. The river winds its way through Moffat County, running from east to west.

Though much of the river is bordered by private land, it is accessible at many points.

Floating the river is a pastime of anglers and leisure-seekers alike. The slow-moving water offers anglers a shot at catching trout, smallmouth bass and northern pike.

One of the best places near Craig to see the Yampa is from Loudy-Simpson Park. The park, located south of town on Ranney Street, is a hub for sports activity in Craig, especially in the summer, when softball tournaments fill the four fields. Hockey teams from across Colorado come in the winter to slap the puck around the ice arena. The park also offers outdoor lovers nature trails and great spots for picnics.

Dinosaur National Monument is one of only a few places in the world that offers a glimpse into prehistory and canyon lands.

The quarry where the fossils are displayed is in Utah, but the Moffat County section of the monument offers Colorado's version of the Grand Canyon.

Canyon walls as high as 200 feet border the Yampa and Green rivers, creating spectacular views from river bottoms.

The monument is near the Utah border, about 90 miles west of Craig.

The Gates of Lodore is a site with high-rising red canyon walls that loom over the Green River below. The area is renowned for its Class 4 rapids, which are among the most formidable in Colorado.

Because of the danger, boating is not allowed without a permit.

To get there from Craig, take U.S. Highway 40 west to Colorado Highway 318. Take 318 north for about 30 miles and look for the signs.

At the western side of town, the dormant volcano known as Cedar Mountain rises out of the plains.

A three-mile trail leads up and around the edge of the mountain, giving a long view over the plains to the north and west and the mountains to the south and east.

To get there, take U.S. Highway 40 west to Moffat County Road 7. Take the county road north for about 5 miles and you'll see the signs.

Craig's historic downtown area offers numerous places to shop. Find that old antique or a great piece to add to your living room.

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