One of my favorite afternoons in Colorado was spent with my family driving "the back way" to Cripple Creek. The back way is called Gold Camp Road, and it has some great scenery. From the start, you will see wonderful views of Colorado Springs. As you go up in elevation and get away from the town, you will see deer and possibly elk...we also saw turkeys during our drive. Later you will drive along roads with sheer drop offs and no guardrails--not for the faint of heart! You will also pass through an old tunnel carved through the rock. At the other end, you will end up in Victor, Colorado; a great spot to grab a beer!
To get to Gold Camp Road: go toward Cheyenne Mountain Zoo (behind the Broadmoor), then take Old Stage Road... after a few miles, turn onto Gold Camp Road. The trip takes 2-3 hours and the road is closed during much of the year due to snow.... Even in May, parts of the road were iced covered, causing us to consider turning around.
Old Colorado City is one of the oldest cities in Colorado, and is the oldest city in the Pikes Peak Region. The city was established in 1859 and became the capitol of the Colorado Territory in 1861. Annexed in 1917 to Colorado Springs and in 1977 became the Springs' only historic distric. Brought into being by the gold rush, oil boom, destructive fires, wars with the Native Americans, high society balls, parlor houses, and saloons are but a few remaining mementos of Old Colorado. To the south side of Colorado Avenue one would find saloons, brothels, and on the North, more respectable businesses. Connecting the two sides were roughly 12 miles of underground tunnels that allowed the upstanding gentlement to frequent the seedier side without being seen. Besides its history, the historic district boasts its brick sidewalks, 100 year old buildings, that hold an assortment of sidewalk cafes, restaurants, boutiques, and shops. Conveniently located next to Manitou Springs and the Garden of the Gods, its bustling with tourism. Lots of festivities during holiday seasons. Rating: 4 stars out of 5.
A beautiful green space park that brings together the lower canyon with a rushing clear river with herbal flowers, brush, live oak, aspens, and pine; with an increasingly steep climb from elevation 6,250 to 7,300 ft upwards through one of Cheyenne Mountain's canyons. Beautiful flora and fauna, interesting geology, and rock climbing availabilities ... this free green space doesn't charge for parking and is a great place for hiking and outdoor recreation. You can take this trail from the Starsmore Discovery Center up to Helen Hunt Falls. Rating: 4 stars out of 5.
Under highway 24,before Manitou,there is a waterfall.It is on the South side of the highway,if you are going West. It can not be seen from the highway.You go down a dirt road and it dead ends.You hike a very short distance.Great place for a hot summer day to get cooled off.
"Briargate Mustangs" were commissioned in 1987 by Vintage Communities and dedicated in May of 1988. This public art is the creation of horseman and self-taught artist T.D. Kelsey of Elbert.
Located near Briargate shopping center.
About a half hour west of Colorado Springs is this National Monument. Start off at the visitor center to see a number of specimans that were found within the monument. From there, take one or two of the trails out into the monument itself. Bring water along on hot days! Depending on which trail you pick, you'll see some of the fossil tree stumps or areas where the original fossil digs were performed. Many signs throughout the park warning about not searching for your own fossils - if you must, there are privately owned digs that surround the monument. Cost is a mere $2 to get into the park, and hiking through the mountains is worth this price of admission alone.
It's a State Park near Cripple Creek, one or two hours far from Colorado Springs. There are several hiking trails and the views you can have over the valleys are really breathtaking.
At night with the full moon the rangers could take you for a hike looking for bears.
Looking for a place to take a walk, perhaps view some nature, and get away from the beaten path, Nancy and I chose Bear Creek Nature Center, an El Paso County-owned park on the outskirts of Colorado Springs. It is a very nice park and includes an exceptional visitor's center with a lot of very interesting nature exhibits geared for kids, but enjoyable by adults.
Ute Pass is generally regarded as an area along US Highway 24 from Old Colorado City through Manitou Springs, Cascade, Green Mountain Falls, and Woodland Park. This pass through the mountains was originally blazed by the Ute Indians, then used by the Spanish explorers and white settlers. The region is now a popular resort area.
Colorado Springs is not simple in its architecture even when it is government building. For example, I found El Paso County Terry R. Harris Judicial Complex building quite not ordinary, with large windows at the entrance. It looks more as a theatre to me.
Located across S. Tejon Street from Pioneers Museum.
Built in 1982. The theatre is small, and as I remember doesn’t have anything spectacular in its hall and concert hall. Despite this fact theatre hosted a lot of performances including international ones.
Address: 190 S. Cascade Avenue
Right behind the sculpture of the Range Riders on Pikes Peak Ave. in the shades there is a small monument (simple thin stone) which says, “The first stake of the Fountain Colony was driven here July 31, 1971.” This is the place from which Colorado Springs begins.
The Mining Exchange Building, where the Cripple Creek millionaires used to trade, is one of a few buildings that left from old Colorado Springs.
This five-story, 1902 building was constructed by Winfield Scott Stratton. The first structure in the city to rise above four stories, the Mining Exchange was also the first fully fireproof office building. The original walls at the ground floor were gray granite, but were covered with the existing Italian marble panels in a 1963 remodeling project. The architect was T. E. Linn and the builders were Roberts and Bishoff.
Now different offices are located in the building, however, you can come in and look at the pictures of Colorado Springs early 1900s on the first floor, try elevator (very funny old looking thing that makes me tremble in disbelief it will bring me to the right floor but not down-down-down). If you go upstairs, you may even find old doors with old signs, like one on the picture, also to see fine work of banisters.
Architectural Style: Late 19th and 20th Century Revivals/Italian Renaissance
Address: 8 S. Nevada Ave./127-29 E. Pikes Peak Ave.
This imposing, formal building served as the center of municipal government from its construction in 1904 until 1980. A major rehabilitation project in 2000-01 restored the building as City Hall, which once again contains the City Council chambers, as well as offices for the Mayor, City Council and the City Manager. Part of the civic complex that includes the City Auditorium and the 1998 Robert M. Isaac Municipal Court to the east.
The $140,000 building reflected the prestige and affluence generated by the
Cripple Creek mining district. This is the earliest of the Classical Revival public
buildings downtown, and reflects the influence of the City Beautiful Movement.
The name of the building, carved into the frieze in 1921, may have been added to
identify and distinguish this building from the City Auditorium located south
across Kiowa Street.
Architect Barber and MacLaren.
Address: 107 North Nevada Avenue
Historic Downtown Colorado Springs Walking Tour
This building represents the efforts of the Young Women’s Christian Association, which was initiated locally in 1899. A fundraising campaign began in 1909 and by 1912, this building emerged to provide classrooms, a gymnasium, and dining area, private rooms and space for religious, social and cultural activities. Used as a hospital by the Red Cross during the influenza epidemic of 1918-19, the building also served as the USO center during World War II.
Architect was Nicholas van den Arend. Continuing in its cultural mission until 1971, the building was threatened with demolition until the William A. Simpsons, a local family involved in banking, purchased and rehabilitated it for commercial use.
Architect Nicholas van den Arend.
Address: 130 East Kiowa Street.
Historic Downtown Colorado Springs Walking Tour