Tourism director proposes hot springs loop

The Pagosa Springs Town Council agreed this week to participate, along with four other Colorado communities, in submitting a grant application to the Colorado Tourism Office (CTO) that will create the Historic Hot Springs Loop as an effort to attract more tour groups from foreign countries to this part of the state.

Jennie Green, the executive director of the Pagosa Springs Area Tourism Board, described meeting some Chinese tour operators at a recent tourism conference.

“Trying to convince them that they need to bring groups down to Pagosa seemed to miss the point,” Green explained. “They’re not going to come on that long-haul of a trip, necessarily, just for one specific destination.”

In collaboration with the tourism directors from Ouray, Glenwood Springs, Steamboat Springs and Chaffee County (which includes Salida and Buena Vista), Green helped develop what will be marketed as the Colorado Historic Hot Springs Loop.

According to the map Green included in the council’s agenda packet, the loop would be 742 miles long and would require slightly more than 14 hours worth of driving time.

Tour buses would travel from Breckenridge (the closest point to Denver) north to Steamboat Springs, then southwest to Glenwood Springs, continuing south through Grand Junction to Ouray, then south through Durango and east to Pagosa, east through Monte Vista and north to Salida, and then complete the loop back to Breckenridge.

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This story was posted on October 8, 2015.