Visit Colorado: Feeling Like a Rock Star at Red Rocks Amphitheatre
19 Jul 2019
Owned and operated by City and County of Denver, Red Rocks Amphitheatre is an open-air amphitheatre built into a rock structure in Morrison, just 10 miles west of Denver Colorado.
Originally known as the Garden of Angels, this geologically formed open-air amphitheater sits 6,450 feet above sea level, and is the only naturally-occurring, acoustically perfect amphitheatre in the world.
The architectural design of Red Rocks amphitheatre consists of two 300’ sandstone monoliths, named Ship Rock and Creation Rock.
Seating up to 9,525 people, Red Rocks has played host to many musicians, and attracts thousands of tourists each day.
Back in the early 1900s, John Brisben Walker realized the acoustic perfection of the area within the giant monoliths. He produced several concerts between 1906 and 1910. Musicians performed on a temporary platform in the amphitheatre.
The City of Denver purchased the area of Red Rocks from John Brisben Walker for $54,133. George Cranmer, Manager of Denver Parks, convinced the mayor of Denver to build on what Walker had started, and work to build out the amphitheatre and stage began.
The goal of Denver architect Burnham Hoyt was to preserve the natural beauty of the area. Plans were completed in 1936, and the park was dedicated in 1941. Red Rocks Park received National Historic Landmark status in 2015.
An Awesome Concert Venue
There have been a whole lot of awesome bands I have played Red Rocks. The Beatles played the open air amphitheatre on August 26th, 1964.
Other bands that have played Red Rocks:
• Jimi Hendrix
• Jethro Tull
• Bruce Springsteen
• The Grateful Dead
• Depeche Mode
• Ringo Starr
I would have loved to be at any one of those shows… but seeing Nine Inch Nails would have been sick!
Many Colorado musicians have played Red Rocks as well:
• John Denver
• Judy Collins
• Big Head Todd and the Monsters
• String Cheese Incident
• The Fray
• Pretty Lights
• The Lumineers
The Stairs at Red Rocks
When I first approached the stairs to go down to the bottom of the amphitheater, I was a little overwhelmed. I knew if I went down to take pictures, that i had to climb those same stairs back to the top.
As part of my ongoing health journey, I have been trying to better my health over the last year or so. Conquering these stairs became a mission.
So I started to walk down the stairs, at a normal pace. Part of the way down, I stopped and took pictures of the stage area.
When I got down to the bottom, I took pictures of the amphitheater theatre seating. It’s amazing how many people they can pack in here for a concert.
There were many people walking, jogging, doing yoga, and participating in Boot Camp classes.
Once I got all the pictures I needed, I went back to the bottom of the stairs and and took a picture of the stairs leading back up to the top.
Not gonna lie, I was pretty nervous. Although coming down stairs can be hard on my knees, i knew climbing back up those same stairs would be quite the workout on my body and lungs.
So I started to climb back up, stopping along the way to take more pictures and to pace myself.
Towards the top, I was getting really tired. I looked over to my right and saw a sign that said “29 steps to go… what’s your heart rate?”. As soon as I finished laughing to myself that I was that close to the top, I hit those last 29 steps at a pretty good pace.
I cheered to myself when I got to the top. It may be a small victory to some, but it is a pretty big one for me. Something I could not have imagined doing just over a year ago.
Red Rocks Amphitheatre is located at:
18300 W. Alameda Parkway, Morrison, Colorado 80465
Red Rocks Park and trails open one hour before sunrise and close one hour after sunset.
Closes at approximately 2:00pm on event days
Open during amphitheatre events to ticketed patrons
April to October: 7:00am to 7:00pm
November to March: 8:00am to 4:00pm
Closed: Thanksgiving and Christmas
Red Rocks Amphitheatre
If you have the chance to visit Colorado, make sure Red Rocks Amphitheatre is on your list of places to visit while there. It really is incredible to stand 6,450 feet above sea level in this open-air amphitheatre, where so many awesome bands have performed. Be prepared for the stair climb if you want to get soem amazing photos. Trust me, it’s worth it!