A few weeks back we visited a place I truly will never forget. We went to Bishop Castle in Rye, CO for the day and it actually took my breath away.
If you are visiting Colorado or live here and are just looking for an epic day trip- head to Rye. We took I-25 to exit #74 at Colorado City and head towards the mountains. (right off the exit ramp from the north and left off the exit ramp from the south) This puts you on Colorado state highway 165 and it’s 24 miles to the Castle.
When you pull in you see the top of the castle right away- this giant dragon towering over the trees. I had no clue what to expect going here. To my surprise, we learned that this castle was actually only built by ONE MAN. His name is Jim Bishop and he has been building this stone and iron structure for 60 years!
The stairs leading up to the castle are very steep and once you start the climb, actually a bit intimidating. There are other ways to enter the castle, but this was more fun!
There are three stories of the castle that are filled with beautiful stained glass windows and iron.
You can climb winding staircases up the towers to get the view of a lifetime.
Some things you should know:
- The castle is free admission though donations are appreciated
- If you are afraid of heights at all- I do not recommend going to the top
- The stairs in the towers to get to the top are very tight and low so any fear of small spaces- probably not for you.
- There is a gift shop that takes cash only with some unique items
- There are no guided tours and no reservations required
- There are some areas that are quite dangerous so young children should be held on to at all times! We didn’t even let Liam go up all the way with us, in fear that he would go running off the edge!
- If you are not use to the elevation here, take your time climbing the stairs and make sure to drink extra water!
Being at the top of the towers was a rush! The iron is swaying in the wind and you are thinking this thing is about to come crashing down at any minute. I love heights and I loved the thrill of it all, but I saw many people not even make it to the towers because they were so afraid!
Even if you don’t like the idea of climbing to the top of this thing, it is still a must see here in CO! Just viewing the castle from the ground or going to the second floor is just brilliant.
Jim Bishop was there while we visited though he wasn’t doing any construction at the time. I have heard he mainly works on it during the weekends.
It is pretty amazing that a structure like this is open to the public ! Liam was telling all his friends he got to go into a REAL castle in the mountains. I am sure he will always remember this trip. It’s just one of those things you can’t ever forget.
So if you are thinking of checking it out, grab your camera, some sunscreen and water and head to Bishop Castle to be blown away.