The Broadmoor Gets Wild

The Broadmoor’s Wilderness Experience offers a mix of old-school luxury, pristine mountain settings and nostalgic Western charm

Colorado Springs' legendary Broadmoor resort is renowned for impeccable service and top-notch, five-star amenities fit for royalty. But even a duchess likes to pull on a pair of hip waders every now and again, and what’s a prince without a horse? Fortunately, the clever folks at the Broadmoor have come up with a plan to tempt every outdoor-adventure-seeking visitor—from commoner to king—with a fresh bunch of new offerings known as the Wilderness Experience.

The Ranch at Emerald Valley, situated just eight miles upland from the Broadmoor and wreathed in the pine-scented air of the vast Pike National Forest, offers the perfect rustic-luxe dream vacation. Spencer Penrose, the late founder of the Broadmoor, certainly thought so—he purchased this ranch as his own private playground in 1923 and named it Camp Vigil.

Today it’s open to the rest of us, and guests at this all-inclusive getaway settle into private log cabins with wood-burning fireplaces where they can ponder the next day’s activities—exploring hiking trails, horseback riding, bird watching, fly-fishing or just lazing in a lakeside hot tub. Of course, visitors can always ring for a ride down to the Broadmoor itself, but hearty meals are also served right on the ranch in the charming Grand Lodge.

Built at an elevation of 9,200 feet, atop Cheyenne Mountain and overlooking Pikes Peak—on the original site of Penrose’s 1924 Cheyenne Lodge—Cloud Camp is another jewel in the Broadmoor’s crown. Arrival itself entails drama: Intrepid guests can catch a ride up from the Broadmoor in a four-wheel-drive vehicle, follow a guide along a mountain trail for a three-hour hike, or even make their way perched on the back of a mule.

Anchored by an 8,000-square-foot timber-and-stone lodge inspired by the classic rugged looks of America’s beloved National Park Service buildings, Cloud Camp can host 56 guests in a variety of rooms, suites and cabins designed by Johnson David Interiors. The romantic Honeymoon Suite rests upon a rock outcropping and is equipped with a copper soaking tub. But for sheer magnificence, it’s hard to beat the Fire Tower Suite, reached by a long flight of stairs and boasting an observation room with multiple telescopes. Perfectly civilized, but with a rustic touch, it’s wilderness done Broadmoor-style. 

Coming in 2015

FISHING CAMP Slated to open this spring, the Broadmoor’s new Fishing Camp will offer more than five miles of private access to the Tarryall River, adjacent to the 120,000-acre Lost Creek Wilderness. Seven cabins and a lodge will accommodate overnight visitors, and day-tripping guests of the Broadmoor will be welcome to cast a line too. Can’t tell one end of the fishing rod from the other? The Broadmoor has you covered—it recently opened its very own Fly-Fishing School.

SEVEN FALLS Flood damage to the seven-tiered, 181-foot-long waterfall has been repaired, and the natural wonder, framed by the dramatic granite walls
of South Cheyenne Canyon, is scheduled to open in May. A fresh slate of activities, events and amenities—including the new 1859 restaurant—will also be unveiled.

AND MORE? Other wilderness experiences are in the planning stages, so stay tuned. 


Categories: Mountain Travel