CRESTED BUTTE, Colo — Learning and hiking are both fun on their own. The Rocky Mountain Biological Lab (RMBL) combines them this summer.
The lab’s informational wildflower hikes are the brainchild of Rick Reavis, an interpretive guide at RMBL. Visitors wanted to learn more about plants in the area, so he decided to give them what they were looking for.
“It gives the public an opportunity to not just learn how to identify a plant but will also give them the opportunity to learn the science connection,” Reavis said. “What is a research scientist studying about a plant?”
The area around Gothic and nearby Crested Butte is known as the Wildflower Capital of Colorado. The area is a perfect mix of what’s underground, snowmelt and secluded mountain valleys – conditions make it possible for about 1,500 species to grow, Reavis said.
Wildflowers near Crested Butte
Reavis’ tours include flower identification and the research being done at RMBL. He has a science background, so he loves to highlight work at the lab. He said he’s in awe of it.
“We have scientists who have not just been doing research here for a few years, but for decades,” Reavis said. “We have some really smart people here.”
As a former university-level horticulture instructor, Reavis knows what it’s like to teach. He said he loves to pass on his passion for plants to anyone who wants to learn more.
“To be able to share my enthusiasm for science, especially in a changing world that we have, is just great,” he said. “You stay very humble here. There’s not a day that goes by that I don’t learn something new.”
The informative tours cost $55 and are open to the public, Tuesdays through Fridays. The hikes are about two hours long and are low impact.
> Top stories curated daily just for you! Sign up for the 9NEWSLETTER to get can’t-miss stories, Next and Broncos content, weather and more delivered right to your inbox.
SUGGESTED VIDEOS: Colorado Guide
MORE WAYS TO GET 9NEWS
Subscribe to our daily 9NEWSLETTER
HOW TO ADD THE 9NEWS APP TO YOUR STREAMING DEVICE
ROKU: add the channel from the ROKU store or by searching for KUSA.
For both Apple TV and Fire TV, search for "9news" to find the free app to add to your account. Another option for Fire TV is to have the app delivered directly to your Fire TV through Amazon.