Welcome to Rye, a charming little town in Greenhorn Valley, near Colorado, that is so picturesque. It has an abundance of nature, wildlife, hiking trails, camping spots and lots of space for those who like to be outdoors.
With a population of only a few hundred, Rye still has plenty to see and do in the middle of Spanish Peaks Country. A highlight is Bishop Castle, built from metal and stone by one man. Entry to the world’s largest one-person project is free, and you can explore the beautiful San Isabel National Forest after exploring the historical castle complete with a cathedral where weddings are often celebrated.
You can also camp in the forest if you prefer a tent to a hotel. Don’t miss seeing the pretty Lake Isabel where you can go hiking, swimming and fishing. It was developed specifically for recreation purposes by the Civilian Conservation Corps and is enjoyed by many campers who love hiking, canoeing, fishing and bird watching.
The center aims to connect children and the community with nature with events, camps, and educational programs and offers scholarships for summer camp programs. It is used for group retreats, weddings, family reunions, weekend getaways and camping.
Animal lovers might like to visit the Valentine Rescue Ranch. This Rye non-profit is a sanctuary for animals that have been abused or neglected. They focus on caring for horses, but if you visit, you will see an array of animals, including cats, dogs and donkeys.
Rye has a humid subtropical climate with most rainfall in March and April and June and July. In summer, the days are hot with cooler evenings. Winter is cold and snowy. It usually snows from November through April.
Rye is situated between Colorado City and Fairview on Colorado 165, southwest of Pueblo. It takes about 1 hour to drive from Colorado Springs to Rye. Here are the directions:
Since Rye is a small place, you might eat at all three of the restaurants listed below during your vacation.
Rye Cafe is a charming dine-in or take-out dining option in downtown Rye on Main Street.
On Boulder Ave, you can find Table Mountain Coffee Shop for a nice meal fueled with great caffeine beverages.
The Lodge Store and Restaurant is part of San Isabel Lodging. They welcome diners for eat-in or take-out even if you are not staying with them. The cozy and rustic decor is as delightful as the homemade food and friendly customer service
Rye is a wonderful place for camping, so we highly recommend you consider pitching a tent or staying in a cabin. Or a hotel might be more your style to use as a base for exploring the town of Rye. Here are some recommendations.
Days Inn by Wyndham Colorado City is a nice hotel about 10 minutes drive from Green Horn Mountain. It has an outdoor pool, complimentary breakfast, Wifi in guest rooms and cable TV. Other facilities include a business center and gym.
If you want to stay in a cabin, San Isabel Lodging is a lovely spot where you can enjoy the fresh mountain air, fishing, biking, canoeing and wildlife viewing.
The cabins are basic and rustic. The Pine Lodge and Rye Country Lodge have similar accommodation. La Vista Camp Ground at Lake Isabel is a good place to put your tent for an overnight stay, especially during the warmer summer months.
Rye was called Table Top Mountain, but the name was changed to Rye after the post office argued the name was too long. The Rye Post Office has been open since 1881 and still operates today. Some believe Rye was named after local wild Rye and others say it is after rye whiskey.
In those days, Rye was known for dairies and sawmills. In the 1960s, the last population of Arkansas River Colorado greenback cutthroat trout were discovered in a little steam. The fish was reintroduced to numerous creeks in Colorado and is now the official state fish.
Rye has an elementary school and a high school.
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