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Colorado is the Rocky mountain state with the mountains rising up from the plains above Denver. The air gets thin, the winters get long, and if you spend enough time up in the Rockies you’ll feel a sense of tangible magic. The Rockies may not have the shamans of the Andes or the sadhus of the Himalaya but the spirit of the mountains is there to be discovered.

Colorado is a progressive and conservative state as granola-eating grass-smoking mountain bikers rally together to pass environmental minded laws, and longer-time mining, logging and hunting residents don’t buy into their bullshit. The US military has a strong presence in Colorado Springs and Norad is tucked away in the rock. Beer is brewed, gold extracted, bison roam and avalanches pour down.

There are many unique small towns, some based around ski resorts, scattered around the state more or less along interstate 70. Vail and Aspen are upscale and have an exclusive feel, places like Keystone and Breckenridge are more fun for the younger crowd. Once the snow melts and the mud dries the smell of the pines and sound of fresh running streams is enough to clear out any kinds of stress you may be carrying around with you.