Take a Day Trip From the Frisco Lodge: Leadville
Posted by: admin December 8th, 2015
Just a short 35-minute drive from our Frisco hotel lies the frontier mountain town of Leadville, Colorado. With a history that dates back to the first miners who discovered gold in the California Gulch in 1860, this 2-mile-high city has an intriguing past, as well as a present day historic district that has been designated as a National Historic Landmark and is one of the premier heritage tourism destinations in the state of Colorado. So, while you’re visiting the Frisco Lodge, why not take a day and visit this little slice of history to find out what the olden days of Colorado were all about?
As the story goes, in the 1890s, everybody who was anybody had been to Leadville. While not necessarily historically accurate, the fact that many late nineteenth century legends of the West frequented this Victorian town may have made it so. Legends such as Doc Holliday, the Unsinkable Molly Brown, John W. Booth and Billy the Kid graced these streets during their heydays, while modern day celebrities Lance Armstrong and Floyd Landis have been known to make an appearance.
While Leadville’s history is the stuff of legends, today the Leadville Historic District includes 67 mines in the mining district east of the city, 70 square blocks of Victorian architecture, 50 turn-of-the-century buildings scattered throughout the town and a variety of museums to get your history fix. In fact, Leadville has more original turn-of-the-century buildings and houses than any other Colorado mountain community and more historical sites and museums per capita than nearly any other Colorado city. But, if you are not quite the history buff, present day Leadville offers visitors a ton of recreational, dining and night life options to choose from.
While summer tends to be Leadville’s busiest time of year, The Leadville Ranger District provides a bountiful of winter sport options for those that enjoy cross country skiing, sledding, ice skating, snowshoeing and snowmobiling. Ski Cooper is just 10 miles from the heart of Leadville and offers more than 400 skiable acres for downhill skiing and a Nordic center for other snow related activities. For the perfect snowshoe and cross country ski excursion, try the 11.6-mile Mineral Belt Trail which is groomed during the winter and loops the city of Leadville.
For those that enjoy just being surrounded by the majestic beauty that Colorado has to offer, Leadville is the highest incorporated city in the United States and is surrounded by Colorado’s two highest mountains, Mt. Elbert (14,433 ft.) and Mt. Massive (14,421 ft.) to the west and Mt. Sherman (14,036) to the east. The city is also bordered by more than a million acres of public lands and national forests making it a year-round mecca for outdoor enthusiasts.
Also during the winter months, there are many special events to take part in, including the Leadville Loppet Race, Winter Carnival, ice fishing competitions, snowshoe races, the Winter Mountain Bike Series and the annual Ski Joring competition which has taken place in Leadville since 1949. The latter entails a horse and rider pulling a skier down a snow packed road over hurdles while spearing rings in a timed competition.
There is no better way to spend a winter’s day in Colorado than enjoying it Leadville style. And, your stay at our Frisco bed & breakfast makes this an easy and affordable day trip for whatever suits your fancy.
Ski Joring photo courtesy of LeadvilleTwinLakes.com