Poudre Canyon

First leg of our Colorado fall tour along Hwy 14 in northwest Colorado

The river's name means"Hiding Place of Powder." According to legend, French fur trappers in the 1820's were caught by a tremendous snowstorm. To lighten their load, they buried large amounts of gunpowder (poudre) in a hiding place (cache) along the banks of the river.

But forget the french lessons. The wild west way to pronounce Cache la Poudre is "cash luh pew-der." The "cash" part is appropriate: the river corridor is rich in paddling, hiking, and scenic driving opportunities.

The Cache La Poudre River begins high in the peaks of Colorado's Rocky Mountain National Park along the Continental Divide. Flowing north and east through Roosevelt National Forest, it tumbles down the slopes of the Front Range and meanders through the city of Fort Collins. From its headwaters to the confluence with the South Platte River east of Greeley, the Cache La Poudre drops 7,000 feet. It's Colorado's first National Wild and Scenic River. Highway 14, which follows much of the river, is a scenic byway between the towns of Fort Collins and Walden.

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