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Colorado

Most of western Colorado, located in the western United States, straddles the Rocky Mountains -- even at its lowest point the state sits 3,000 feet above sea level.

Colorado's topography draws millions of sightseers throughout all seasons. Spring, summer and fall, motorists pack the highways and byways that cut through stands of ponderosa pines, past slopes awash in colorful wild flowers and dry grasses, and blooming yucca on the plateaus; hunters, fishers, hikers and boaters explore the rivers, lakes and forests. The snow-capped, multi-ski-runs in fancy resorts such as Vail, Aspen and Steamboat Springs bring in the winter visitors. Historic attractions include Black Canyon, the Great Sand Dunes and the Hovenweep cliff dwellings.

Four major rivers, the Rio Grande, the Mississippi, the Missouri and the Colorado are fed by tributaries in the mountains of Colorado, beginning near or at the Continental Divide which divides the state in two. Most of the cities and towns in the state are located on the east side of the divide. Denver, its capital city, sits on the flat, grassy, high plains side that borders Kansas and Nebraska. Utah bounds its west side, New Mexico lies south and Wyoming and Nebraska lie north.

Climate in the state depends on the elevation. Cooler winter temperatures prevail, the higher one climbs -- and when the wind blows. Dry summer temperatures range in the mid 70's fahrenheit.


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