1) Tap the San Luis
Time for a siesta? Swing in this rustic brick brew pub and nestle up to a Valle Caliente. The brewers at SLV Brew take their award-winning Mexican Lager and run let it soak up the flavor of Hatch green chiles from Hatch Valley, New Mexico. Muy Sabroso. All of SLV brews are made with Colorado hops and barley, and water from the Rio Grande River basin.
Fill up on burgers, sandwiches and try the homemade honey mustard dressing on a huge salad.
2) Valley bold
It's hard not to get lured into The Roast: Craft Coffee and Libations, where they roast, brew and package coffee right in front of you in historic downtown Alamosa. Pick from a full coffee menu or go for the house brew, good with the Brewhouse Breakfast Burrito: A warm tortilla wrapped around homemade chorizo, bacon, potatoes, scrambled eggs, green chiles and jack cheese. The other side of the SLV Brewery, it's a unique behind-the-scenes show: breakfast is served while the craft beer masters get to work.
3) Wild and free
The San Luis Valley is 100 miles long, 50 miles wide and is visible form space, surrounded by the Rocky Mountains.
The 11,169-acre Alamosa National Wildlife Refuge is one of three national wildlife refuges in the San Luis Valley and home to some 200 bird species including songbirds, birds of prey and waterfowl, in addition to other wildlife like deer, elk, coyote, rabbits and more. The refuge is a vital part of the natural ecology and is terrific for self-guided tours.
4) A great escape
The Great Sand Dunes National Park is unlike any other park in Colorado, or the intermountain southwest. More than 150,000 acres, much of it mountain terrain, almost one-third of it is entirely made up of sand, massive dunes of sand - up to 750 feet tall - that boggle the mind and the senses. The dune area is some 33 square miles, with no trails, maps or guidelines to follow. Just be ready to work for it. Here, relentless amazing winds never cease. Take a guided full moon tour with a trip leader or wander out on you own and gaze at the stars.
5) Ticket to ride
Book now and save a seat on the Rio Grande La Veta Pass Route for the Rails and Ales Brew Fest, June 17, 2017. It's all aboard a stunning train ride to a postcard-perfect mountain meadow located at nearly 10,000 feet, where a music festival and beer festival are rolled into one. Forty breweries share their craft, with food and live music, tastings and barbecue.