Carbondale Colorado, CO

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Carbondale Colorado

Carbondale is not far from Aspen and worth a visit when traveling and experiencing a Rocky Mountain vacation, for you will surely love this natural paradise filled with outdoor adventures.

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  • Carbondale, Colorado is a natural paradise filled with outdoor adventures
  • Only 41 minutes away from Aspen
  • Hike to the top of Mount Sopris
  • Do some biking on the trails at Red Hill Recreation Area
  • Catch some trout on the Roaring Fork River
  • Soak at Penny Hot Springs


Carbondale, Colorado is nestled in the Rockies, near Aspen and the base of Mount Sopris and at the confluence of the Roaring Fork and Crystal Rivers, offering so much in the way of recreational opportunities.


This mountain town is situated along Colorado Highway 82, north of Aspen, Colorado and south of Glenwood Springs.


Find a wide array of cuisines fit for royalty in Carbondale. Try Pacific-Asian cuisine, seafood, pasta, barbeque delights, premiere desserts, Mexican dinners, organic vegetarian meals, homemade sandwiches, pizza, or Thai. The list is endless!

Lodging in Carbondale offers a variety of accommodation options, which include lodges snuggled within the forest, rustic cabins, historic inns and comfortable Bed & Breakfasts. You’ll also find the traditional motels and hotels with great amenities.


Recreation enthusiasts find Carbondale provides all they are looking for.

  • Hiking
    Hiking to the top of Mount Sopris is a real treat, and you can get there on the Mount Sopris Trail, fourteen miles roundtrip. You’ll get a great workout and some of the most breathtaking scenery in the whole state. Trails within the Red Hill Recreation Area range from easy to very difficult. For the best views, take the Mushroom Rock Trail. For the easiest hike, take the Outer Loop. To see the remains of an old railroad trestle, check out the Thompson Creek Trail, only 7 miles from Carbondale. There’s a lot more, too. Check with the locals to discover their favorites.
  • Biking
    You can bike to the summit of Mount Sopris on the Hay Park Trail. It’s 30 miles roundtrip. From the same trailhead at Prince Creek Road, you can access Crown Trail, Porcupine Loop and West Sopris Creek Trail. And you’ll find some of the best mountain biking trails at the Red Hill Recreation Area. Closer to town, you’ll enjoy the Carbondale-El Jebel Loop, where you’ll start out in downtown Carbondale and travel the paved country roads through lovely open countryside.
  • Climbing
    Rock climbing is the best in the Roaring Fork Valley. The season goes through October, with a number of well-known climbing areas, such as Box Canyon, riverside boulders close to Redstone, and the crags along the road to Independence Pass.
  • Whitewater Rafting
    Test your skill and stamina on the rapids around Carbondale. Whitewater rafters love the rushing waters of the Crystal River as it joins the Roaring Fork. Brave Cemetery Rapids or the Shoshone Rapids as the crashing roar of the water drowns out all other sounds.
  • Fly-fishing
    Find world-class fishing in the Roaring Fork Valley, some great fishing locations right around Carbondale and other spots only a few minutes away. Check out the stretch of water on the Roaring Fork River between Glenwood Springs and Carbondale for the largest fish. Get out there in a drift boat to make the best catches.
  • Nordic Skiing
    During the winter, Nordic skiing is a favorite activity. Twelve miles of groomed trails in the Spring Gulch Nordic Trail System exist only 7 miles west of town. Get out into the backcountry at Avalanche Creek. This is just off of Highway 133.
  • Downhill Skiing and Snowboarding
    Aspen/Snowmass is nearby, for the best in downhill skiing and snowboarding. If you are a beginner, go to Buttermilk Mountain for lots of wide trails. There is a huge choice in skiing resorts around Carbondale.


  • Penny Hot Springs
    Not far away you can delight to the natural wonder of the Penny Hot Springs. Soak all your cares away in the therapeutic waters. It is particularly rejuvenating in winter!
  • West Elk Loop Scenic and Historic Byway
    Drive through the Crystal River Valley to see incredible views of the mountains and enjoy the alpine flowers blooming in the meadows. This scenic route is 205 miles long and takes about 7 hours to travel.

Getting Here

Getting from Carbondale to Aspen, Colorado takes only 41 minutes. Get on Highway 133 to Colorado Highway 82 east, and drive right into the center of town.

Other Carbondale Colorado Resources

City of Carbondale

Official site for the city of Carbondale, Colorado.

Mt. Sopris Historical Society

The Mount Sopris Historical Society is Carbondale's local museum.

Aspen Valley Land Trust

Aspen Valley Land Trust promotes land conservation in and around Carbondale, Colorado.

Garfield County Website

Garfield County includes the towns of Carbondale, Rifle, Glenwood Springs, and Redstone.