Royal Gorge Bridge and Park to open March 15

Beginning March 15, the Royal Gorge Bridge & Park will offer guided tours on park vehicles through construction zones and over one of the world’s highest suspension bridges, weekends only, said Mike Bandera, vice president and general manager.

Weather and construction permitting, park hours will be 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. The park fee is $10 per person, 3-year-olds and under are free.

Interest in rebuilding the park has been “off the charts,” said Bandera. Thousands of people have driven to the Royal Gorge since the day after the Royal Gorge Fire, June 11, he said.

“Our first tour will begin at 10:30 a.m. and all tickets will be sold on a first-come, first-serve basis,” Bandera said.

Group tours will travel to the Royal Gorge Bridge where guests can enjoy the scenery. The tour will then travel up to the Royal Rush Skycoaster, the park’s thrill ride. Electricity and weather permitting, guests will be able to ride or walk up to Point Sublime for another scenic view of the Royal Gorge. Skycoaster prices are $25 for one rider, $45 for two riders, and $60 for three riders.

Those with valid 2013 season passes will be honored, and no coupons will be taken.

Bandera suggests to dress warmly as the main mode of transportation is “open-air.” Park capacity for the tours is limited and last tour is at 3 p.m. Bandera said bottled water and sodas will be available as the park does not have water and sewer, and electricity is spotty throughout the park.

The June wildfire swept through the park, decimating 48 out of 52 buildings and attractions in the 85-year-old park. It caused an estimated $30 million in damage. The Royal Gorge Bridge received minor damage. The park expects a grand reopening in August. The park and bridge are owned by Cañon City.

For more information, visit www.royalgorgebridge.com or call 888-333-5597.