I live just north of Denver (Brighton) and LTE service is extremely poor. My 4G signal is 1-2 bars at best with download speeds of 2 Mbps and upload speeds of 1 Mbps. I've spoken with Verizon support on multiple occasions and their only suggestion was to purchase a Network Extender. While that may help at home, it doesn't do any good when service is poor throughout the rest of the area.
Yeah, you face the same challenges that I do. I live North also near Firestone/Frederick/Erie and reception is abysmal at best. Verizon has pushed for me to spend $250 on a network extender but I'm trying to hold back to see if wifi calling comes out this century for iOS phones at all.
My speeds are a little better, I have 1-2 bars of cellular and usually always have LTE; averaging around 4-7 Mbps download.
I'm in the same boat though - network extender might help at home, but doesn't help when I leave and venture around town's north of Denver.