The Rocky Mountains are the foundational backbone American West luxury travel, stretching from New Mexico to British Columbia. This jagged land of snowcapped peaks, abundant river valleys, arid red-earth plateaus, and spewing geysers was first discovered during the 19th century when Manifest Destiny drove Americans westward in search of the earth’s untapped resources. The region has since taken on a cultural mythos of the American frontier—or the “Wild West”—best dramatized by the cowboy outlaw galloping toward the horizon of unforeseeable danger and limitless opportunity.

Today, the living geology and history of the Mountain West puts on an extraordinary show for its visitors. It is first and foremost the site of the United States’ most treasured and iconic landscapes, including Yellowstone National Park, the world’s oldest national park, and the Grand Canyon, often considered one of the Seven Natural Wonders of the World. These are nature’s masterpieces, revealed in the vermillion-colored rock formations of Sedona, the majestic sandstone towers of Monument Valley, and the giant amphitheaters of Bryce Canyon. And within its fascinating structures is a plethora of adventurous and uniquely-American activities. Go canyoneering in Zion National Park; soak in Yellowstone’s colorful hot springs; search for dinosaur fossils in Utah; seek out Monument Valley’s sacred Navajo sites; admire the stars of Montana’s Big Sky country; and discover the free-roaming wildlife of America’s Big Five of grizzlies, moose, bison, mountain lions, and wolves.

The West is also home to the majority of the country’s Native American and Latin American populations. The numerous American Indian tribal reservations and Spanish place names attest to the region’s history as former Spanish, Mexican, and Native American territories. While theirs is a story of war and displacement, these divergent cultures continue to influence the enduring spirit of the land. Whether journeying alongside the Navajos or flightseeing above the Grand Canyon, there is no better way to get to the heart of the Mountain West than on a custom, luxury tour with Ker & Downey.