The quaint town of Keystone offers some picturesque sightseeing spots, ample scope for outdooractivities andd some grand historical monuments. So here are the 15 best things to do here.
Let's explore Keystone points of interest and 15 best things to do in Keystone:
1. Marvel at Mount Rushmore National Memorial & Presidential Trail
This is perhaps one American monument unique to the continent and one of its kind in the world. Really something to marvel at. A gigantic mountain sculpture of the faces of US presidents Thomas Jefferson, George Washington, Abraham Lincoln and Theodore Roosevelt carved on the black hills of Mt. Rushmore. Truly a sight to behold. Surrounded by a wonderfully picturesque national park offering a variety of outdoor activities, a museum and gift shops. Stroll along the majestic Presidential Trail to have a closer look at this national monument and get mesmerized by its intricate detailing. You can even go fishing, horseback riding, geocaching, mountain biking and camping. One of Keystone’s most prominent landmarks, this place is visited by thousands of tourists annually.
2. Learn about Gutzon Borglum at the Borglum Story, Keystone
One of Keystone’s most fascinating museums, this showcases works by Gutzon Borglum, the world-renowned sculptor who created the mountain sculpture of the faces of US presidents at Mount Rushmore. His extraordinary talent is amply showcased by way of his works that are displayed. Take a peek at his personal life from his memorabilia. You’ll be guided by audio as you take in the marvelous carvings, notable among which is the full-sized eye sculpture of Abraham Lincoln, the legendary American President. Reachable by public transport, car or taxi.
3. Get the Presidential experience at the National Presidential Wax Museum, Keystone
Keystone’s charm is enhanced by its National Presidential Wax Museum, which showcases the works of Katherine Stubergh, the world renowned wax artist. All figures displayed here are made of wax and are figures of some of America’s greatest sons who played critical roles in shaping its history and democracy. You will get to see over one hundred life-sized sculptures, which almost seem real. It’ll truly be a dramatic experience, particularly for the children. With Mount Rushmore as its backdrop, this museum is truly a most scenic location and also comes with a gift shop. Reachable on foot from Keystone Station or by car or taxi.
4. Hit the slopes of the Keystone Ski Area
A great place for skiing and other snow sports enthusiasts. This sprawling terrain spreads over three mountains, offering multiple trails to all categories of skiers. You can also enjoy its snowshoeing, ice skating, tubing and snowboarding facilities.
5. Stop by the Loveland Pass
One of Keystone’s most scenic spots on Highway 6, Loveland Pass offers a great opportunity for hiking and taking in the gorgeous view of the great continental divide. As you drive on the winding highway, you will be simply charmed by the roadside view. Wear warm clothing as it’s usually cold and fairly windy. Ideal for snowboarders and backcountry skiers during the winter. However, drive carefully as the road to Loveland Pass is narrow with a precipitous drop on the side and no guardrails!
6. Get a taste of history at the Keystone Museum
This was once an old school building and has now been converted into a museum in 1988. The Keystone Historical Museum showcases all that there is to know of Keystone culture and history. Its elegant Victorian architecture, collection of rocks and minerals, art and photographs as also the display of Carrie Ingalls’ memorabilia are something worth seeing. The museum’s school-like furniture and internal setting would certainly charm the children. Accessible from Keystone Station.
7. Skate on Keystone Lake
For those who love ice skating at night, this is the spot! Skates are available on hire as are trainers and assistants called walkers to help the young and the elderly to spin around on the ice. Its huge Christmas tree during winter is a sight to behold also. Pay $15 as skate rental and an additional $15 for two hours of skating. Also has some great summer activities like water skiing, paddle boating and canoeing. Its Edgewater Café also offers some lip-smacking food. The children would love feeding the fish, geese and ducks. The lake is also famous for its large-sized trout.
8. Race down the ski slopes of Arapahoe Basin
This is one of Keystone’s most affordable and laid back ski areas with cheap full-day lift tickets, food and drinks. Free parking is available also. An additional advantage is that it doesn’t get too crowded and remains open till late May. The terrain however, is slightly more challenging but great for experienced skiers. Enjoy the live band and beer tents on Saturday nights. Lift tickets are cheaper online than at the ticket counters.
9. Get charmed by Main Street, Keystone
Keystone’s Main Street is studded with historic buildings and allows you to take a historic walk. Enjoy its pleasant restaurants, fun shops and occasional festivals with live bands with livelier crowds. However, the traffic is heavy and parking is a problem. Try to lodge at the Mountain Village while taking the gondola ride to and from Telluride. You are sure to enjoy it.
10. Bike away at the Keystone Bike Park
A perfectly maintained and picturesque park with some picturesque hiking and biking trails. However, carry your own water as the trails are very long and can induce tiredness and dehydration. The green trails are smooth enough for first time bikers and the surrounding forests are a haven of peace and quiet. Certain patches may be bumpy though and starting your ride early is advisable before it gets too hot. Great for downhill biking enthusiasts.
11. Have a different skiing experience at Keystone Nordic Centre
Here’s a great chance to enjoy some downhill skiing with a difference in the typical Nordic style. The instructors are extremely cooperative and will help you learn the technique fast. Spend the afternoon snow-shoeing center’s perimeter loop and enjoy the great views from the top. You also get lessons in cross country skiing or can opt for self exploration of the area using a train map. Also known for some great soups and food which the center’s restaurant serves.
12. Rest for a while at the Dillon Reservoir
It’s sweeping views make it worth driving by! A huge lake, Dillon Reservoir hosts outdoor concerts at its amphitheater during summers. You can also visit Summit County close by or simply hike by the lake at your own leisure. Great place for landscape photography enthusiasts, too. Enjoy a packed lunch by the lakeside and feel the area’s tranquility calm your city-shot senses.
13. Have fun at the Rush Mountain Adventure Park
This is one place that offers fun at all levels! Home to the famous Rushmore Cave, Rush Mountain Adventure Park is all about some magnificent stalactite-filled caverns where taking an educational cave tour could be really thrilling. Enjoying the amusement rides on offer such as the Soaring Eagle Zipline Ride that soars through the sky or the Gunslinger 7-D Interactive Ride. Speed down the hill on the Rushmore Mountain Coaster. The kids would simply love it. Open daily from May to October and on weekends in March and April.
14. Indulge in adventure with Rushmore Tramway Adventures
A haven for adventure lovers, Rushmore Tramway Adventures offers everything from action-packed adventure facilities to the breath-taking views of Black Hills and Mount Rushmore National Memorial. A terrific spot for family entertainment, particularly during summer.
15. Go gold hunting at the Big Thunder Gold Mine
This mine was opened in 1892 and offers a 55-minute tour. This tells you the history of the American Gold Rush in 1876. You’ll be amazed at the largest display of Black Hill’s mining equipment and get an actual taste of panning on site to locate some gold. There are also 4-hour panning trips of forest property at a creek close to the mine. A great opportunity to strike gold!