Mountain BOCES works in partnership with ten school districts and Colorado Mountain College to furnish services which can be more efficiently provided across school districts in order to maximize educational opportunities for Colorado students. The Mountain BOCES region covers five Rocky Mountain counties spanning 8,500 square miles of some of the most spectacular territory on the planet. The region is known for summer and winter sports, where residents enjoy the best of rural living along with world-class art, music, dance, and theatre in towns that offer a range from quaint western flavor to high-end resorts.
The Buena Vista School District R-31 includes Buena Vista, Johnson Village, and Nathrop. Nestled at the foot of the Collegiate Peaks, this area is popular for whitewater rafting, winter sports, backpacking adventures, and animal watching. Big summer fun happens in Buena Vista with Concerts in the Park, Adventure Xtreme, the Mountain Mania Car Show, the Buena Vista Quilt Show, Paddle Fest, Art in the Park, Buena Vista Bike Fest, Walden Chamber Music, Apple Fest, Gold Rush Days, Canine Classic, King Boletus Mushroom Festival, and the BalloonaVista hot air balloon show!
The Garfield County School District 16 serves the towns of Parachute and Battlement Mesa with a total population of approximately 5,500 between the two towns. Situated along the Colorado River, this region offers a mild four-season climate and high desert mountain views of The Battlements and The Bookcliffs. Another sportsman’s paradise, the region is great for hunting, fishing, hiking, golfing, rafting, camping, and skiing.
The Garfield County School District Re-2 includes Rifle, Silt, and New Castle. The largest of the three, Rifle rests in the Colorado River Valley surrounded by the Grand Mesa, Roan Cliffs, and Flat Top Mountains. The quaint downtown features antique shops, fine dining, country dancing, and historic museums. You can get back to nature at White River National Forest, Rifle and Harvey Gap State Parks, or Rifle Falls State Park for hiking, biking, camping, boating, and swimming. The region is rich with wildlife and gold medal streams that provide some of the best elk hunting and flyfishing in Colorado.
The Lake County School District R-1 serves Leadville (home of the Unsinkable Molly Brown), Granite, and Twin Lakes—another great region for summer and winter sports like climbing “fourteeners” and skiing. Leadville is a legendary frontier mining town surrounded by snow-capped mountain peaks, and the Arkansas River runs through it—great for rafting, kayaking, and fly fishing. Twin Lakes provides exquisite scenery for boating and camping.
The Park County School District Re-2 serves the small mountain towns of Alma, Fairplay, Hartsel, and Lake George. Fairplay, elevation 9,896 feet, and Alma, at 10,355 feet, are restored ghost towns in the Pike National Forest with histories of gold and silver mining. Lake George sits near the Florissant Fossil Beds. In addition to the typical summer and winter mountain sports, numerous rivers and reservoirs provide opportunities for various water sports. Hartsel, the “Heart of Colorado,” is three blocks long. The region is home to many buffalo!
The Roaring Fork School District Re-1 is named after the Roaring Fork River, which borders the towns served—Glenwood Springs, Carbondale, and Basalt. The Roaring Fork Valley offers exceptional flyfishing, rafting, kayaking, hiking, biking, camping, and skiing. Located at the confluence of the Roaring Fork and Colorado Rivers, Glenwood Springs is home to the largest outdoor hot springs swimming pool in the world. A one-mile trek leads to scenic Hanging Lake and Spouting Rock, and hiking Grizzly Creek—most beautiful in the spring and autumn—takes you to the Flat Tops Wilderness plateau. The Iron Mountain Tramway takes you to the Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park, Ski Sunlight offers alpine and nordic skiing, and Two Rivers Park offers summer music concerts. Glenwood Springs also boasts the Center for the Arts, Glenwood Dance Academy, Annual Art Festival, Symphony in the Valley, and Colorado’s oldest civic celebration: the Strawberry Days Festival. Basalt and Carbondale offer fine dining, cross country skiing, theater, popular summer festivals, and great music. Carbondale's new Performing Arts Center (PAC3) brings in nationally known musicians for great dancing!
The Salida School District R-32-J serves Salida, Poncha Springs, and Howard, Colorado. This area is an outdoor enthusiast's dream. Designated among Men's Journal’s “10 Best Places to Live” and Outside magazine's “Best American Dream Towns,” Salida is nestled among fifteen 14,000-foot mountains—the perfect base camp for hikers, peak baggers, mountain bikers, bird watchers, horseback riders, trail runners, rock climbers, boaters, anglers, hunters, and off-road enthusiasts. Winter offers snowmobile routes, backcountry skiing, and Monarch Ski Resort. The Arkansas River is known for whitewater rafting and kayaking and the world-class Brown Trout Fishery. Best yet, natural hot springs sprinkle the area.