Brief by Central Staff
Media – September 1998 – Colorado Central Magazine
Buena Vista: The New Aspen?
“Salida isn’t totally undiscovered,” according to the September edition of Men’s Journal, although it “feels like a frontier” in comparison to its “tourist-trap neighbors such as Buena Vista and Aspen” which are “attracting all the attention.”
That’s the first time we’ve seen Buena Vista and Aspen lumped together in any category, but the rest of the short piece seems reasonably accurate, with Salida’s “attitude” defined as “neo-hippie meets adrenaline junkie.”
Perhaps fortunately, the article recommends a curious route to town: “drop in via San Isabel National Forest Road 175, a gravel passage through a high, empty basin that looks like a missing piece of Alaska. Eventually, you’ll find yourself downtown, where rows of brick buildings that once housed bars and bordellos are now occupied by bike shops and bakeries.”
Forest Road 175 is known locally as Ute Trail, and is easy to find from Salida. Finding the other end of 175 could be tricky: it sits about 20 miles from town at the Frémont County line where 175 forks into “2 Road” and “18 Road.” Both then branch further into various mazes — anyone who takes the trouble to “drop in via San Isabel National Forest Road 175” would have to be pretty dedicated.
But Men’s Journal says it’s worth the effort: “Salida enjoys more than 330 days [of sunshine] per year. It’s not uncommon to go skiing on a January morning and play a round of golf in the afternoon. That cinches it. Shangri-La does exist, after all.”