It’s country so beautiful that it inspired John Denver’s “Rocky Mountain High.” And the lines “O beautiful for spacious skies in America the Beautiful. What’s more, it inspired the exhausted pioneers who pushed on from the plains to Pike’s Peak or Bust. Majestically standing in the distance, the Peak has been a magnet for travelers for nearly 1,000 years. Settled by the first prehistoric Cliff dwellers, the area drew Ute Indiana, Spanish explorer Coronado, French explorer LaSalle and Franciscan friars, before millions of settlers crossed on their way to points west. Some stayed, creating frontier settlements throughout Colorado, where silver, snow-capped mountains burst forth from dense forest, reaching skyward as far as the eye can see. On the ground, looking up at these awesome peaks, you can only wonder what thunderous forces created the stone monoliths standing proudly after gigantic volcanic explosions and earth moving thrusts lifted earth more than 14,000 feet into the air. Rushing water cut canyons so treacherous Native Americans preferred climbing mountains to get around them. Today, deep in these incredible landscapes, you’ll find lush forests, clear flowing rivers, serene meadows and unspoiled vistas that emerge mile after mile. The combination of this vast natural beauty, with authentic heritage celebrated throughout the state, and you’ll be on your way to scenic drives that will knock your socks off.