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Come all ye Irish gentlemen,
a story I would tell
Of St. Tim’s church at Ashcroft
and all that there befell.
Since snows did fall and streams run down
from lofty Castle Peak,
More witching spot could ne’er be found,
of poet to speak;
Or lovely vales, bestrewn with flowers,
or Columbine more rare;
Or sparkling waters foaming down,
or azure skies more fair.
..... An excerpt from a poem written by John Leahy, Ashcroft's Mayor/Justice of the Peace/Town Scholar. He's said to have died in an avalanche while reciting the poetry he loved to write, and his ghost is said to still inhabit the town.
In 1880, (Ashcroft's early days), there were cabins, a store, saloon, jail, post office, and hotel. By far the most popular was the saloon where the miners would relax and play cards and converse with the "Spanish Ladies", (prostitutes), in the two story gambling dancing hall called Paddy's. At that time the Montezuma-Tam O'Shanter mine produced up to $20,000 worth of silver a month. By 1883 Ashcroft had more residents than Aspen; more than 2,500 people hoping to cash in on the promise of Silver called this their home.
Before long there were almost 20 saloons as news of Ashcroft's wealth spread; however when the silver mines produced little more than the yellow-orange tailing piles still evident today the population quickly shifted to Aspen. In 1887 the Denver and Rio Grande Railroad put a stake through the heart of Ashcroft bypassing it, and completing a rail line through Aspen.
As you walk through the historically protected ghost town you are guided by elevated wooden sidewalks with stops here and there with information boards telling you about the buildings and the residents. You can almost hear the piano playing in the old saloon along with cards being shuffled. If you visit in the winter, there are lots of wonderful cross-country trails to follow too.
Updated Apr 1, 2004
Address: Castle Creek Road - 10 miles outside Aspen, CO
These are the most visited and photographed mountains in Colorado, perhaps even in the entire US. The prisine waters of Maroon Lake reflect the mountains behind them, to create a classic view.
Unfortunately, this place gets extremely crowded in summer, especially on weekends. Between 9:00 am and 5:00 pm, you must take the bus from nearby Rubey Park to the trailhead. Those wishing to drive there must arrive before then.
The hiking trail around Maroon Lake offers spectacular vistas. The one to Crater Lake is offers even better ones. The hike is about 3.5 miles round trip, with lots of rocks and roots. Take your time. It's well worth it.
Written Jul 30, 2012
Referred to by some as "Gucci" Mountain, the Aspen Mountain ski resort is one of four in the Aspen-Snowmass area. It is directly above the town of Aspen and is the only one accessible from the town itself, thus most of its skiers are visitors who are staying in the town and its rather expensive hotels. As we all know, the clientele of town often tend to be ultra rich and super famous, so there is no shortage of labels on the slopes, and hence the nickname "Gucci Mountain". When I visited in late March 2013 for a weekend, I only skied Snowmass and Highlands, but was told Aspen Mountain did not offer the best skiing. Instead it was the best place to see and be seen! The base of the mountain is at 2,422 metres, and the highest peak is at 3,418 metres, for a vertical drop of just under 1,000 metres.
Updated Mar 29, 2013
The smallest of the four ski areas in Aspen-Snowmass, Buttermilk is intended mainly for beginners and snowboarders. Those were two reasons for me not to bother with it at all, not that I had any time for it. I managed to take the attached fuzzy photo of Buttermilk Mountain from the car, on the way to Snowmass.
Written Mar 29, 2013
The largest of the four ski mountains in Aspen, Snowmass has some excellent skiing. It also has the longest vertical drop: 1,343, metres from its highest peak of 3,813 metres (The Cirque) to its base at 2,473 metres (it is also the second biggest vertical drop in the US, after Jackson Hole). Because of its size, it also gets the most crowds, but it does take at least two or three days to ski the whole mountain. Accommodations in Snowmass Village tend to be cheaper than Aspen itself, which is another reason why many people prefer to stay here. I had a great ski experience in Snowmass, mainly because it was the end of March (the 23rd) with an unexpected cold and snowy spell, so the mountain was quite empty. Snowmass Mountain is located about 15-20 minutes by car from Aspen itself.
Updated Mar 31, 2013
The centre of Aspen feels like a real American town, rather than a ski resort, because of the efforts made by the city to preserve its original character. After it was founded around 1880, the town had a little over a decade of ephemeral prosperity as a silver mining town, during which much of the beautiful red brick architecture was built. A stroll around town is a must when visiting the area, but unfortunately, most of us are priced out of the shopping here as nearly every expensive fashion label has a boutique, among them Dior, Burberry, Zegna, Prada, Brunello Cucinelli, and the list goes on.
Updated Mar 29, 2013
This was a fascinating look at how the movers and shakers of the world live and play in Aspen, What beautiful homes of Movie Stars, Television Stars, Sports Stars, Music Stars, Super Models, Fortune 500 CEO's and Royalty! We where told many fascinating stories about these world famous celebrities.
We saw about 75 of the most beautiful and expensive homes in the world. You'll have incredible stories to tell your friends when you get home! The tour was about 2 1/2 hours and rates are fare.
Written Aug 5, 2005
Address: Aspen Co
Phone: 970-544-4700 / 1-800-951-9495
From the trailhead, its a 6 mile hike to Lost Man Lake. The total elevation gain is 2,000 feet. Lost Man Lake is situated at an elevation of 12, 450 ft
Written Mar 11, 2003
On the edge of downtown Aspen is the Silver Queen Gondola. It takes you up to the summit of Aspen Mountain, for a panoramic view of the beautiful Elk Mountains to the west.
Written Jul 30, 2012
Address: P.O. Box 1248 , Aspen, CO 81612
Phone: (970) 925-1220
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