I have often said that Ridgway is perfect right now and that I wish we could “freeze” it in time. This one-stoplight town was almost flooded in the 1990s when the Ridgway Reservoir was built, and growth has been slower here than many of the surrounding mountain towns, which in my mind, makes it even more of a gem. There are just enough restaurants, amenities, and cultural activities but you still know more than half the people in line at the Post Office.
I encourage visitors (especially if you are on vacation) to take the opportunity to unplug, be patient, and enjoy a slightly slower pace of life. Great ways to do this are to take a stroll down the river path, check out one of our remote backcountry huts, or enjoy outside dining at one of our great restaurants. We have some good restaurants for a small town and I think it is because they know they have to get locals to keep coming back.
One of the best things about small towns is that most people smile or say hello. Ridgway is a friendly community where it doesn’t matter if you are a world-class athlete (there are a lot around), rancher, or stay-at-home mom. In Ridgway it can be hard to tell the difference and the difference really doesn’t matter. I hope that the character of Ridgway stays the same. It is pretty idyllic with pastoral ranchland leading up to majestic peaks, just enough people, and almost enough dogs.
Whether you are in Ridgway for a backcountry hut trip, as a hub to access other mountain towns, or just passing through, I hope you get a chance to stop for a moment and enjoy the views, enjoy the sun, and enjoy the friendly people!