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petefoss
06-12-2007, 08:43 AM
I'm going to be in Colorado next week on vacation and was thinking about driving between Silverton and Lake City and checking out the ghost towns along the way. What kind of vehicle is needed for the road? Typical SUV or do you need more ground clearance than that?

Thanks,
Pete

40FORDJIM
06-12-2007, 09:42 AM
I have driven the road many times in a Suburban and now with a Ford Excursion. There are sometimes places that will make you pause to figure the best way thru a rough spot but I have never had to turn back. There may still be some snow near the top of the passes. If we go to Lake City via Engineer Pass we come back by Cinnamon Pass or vice-versa. Make sure you stop at Oh! Point near Engineer Pass. It is a beautiful view. Several years ago a man tried to drive a large U-haul truck from Lake City to Silverton via Engineer Pass. He almost made it over the pass until his front wheels dropped over the edge!! He had a large towing bill and a heavy fine.
We are heading that way also June 21st. We hope you enjoy the many sites and Ghost Towns in the area.

40FORDJIM
06-12-2007, 09:47 AM
I forgot to mention that you must have 4WD.

petefoss
06-12-2007, 01:19 PM
If we go to Lake City via Engineer Pass we come back by Cinnamon Pass or vice-versa. Make sure you stop at Oh! Point near Engineer Pass.

If you were doing a one-way would you take Engineer or Cinnamon Pass?

40FORDJIM
06-12-2007, 02:15 PM
I would take Engineer Pass. It is more rugged on the Silverton side but once thru the pass it is not bad on the Lake City side. There are more building ruins on the Engineer Pass road also. We usually go to Lake City, have lunch, look around Lake City, and return in the afternoon. We usually spend 3 weeks plus in the area. Are you just passing thru Silverton? September is a beautiful time for Fall Aspen color.

Gerald Susoeff
06-13-2007, 12:19 PM
I was up to Animas Forks over the weekend and the road from Silverton is fine for a car, dirt but good. You will need a 4x4 over either pass you should choose. The road past AF got pretty snowy, a plow had been through. My Tahoe was almost touching the snow walls on either side made by the plows cut. Lots to see, you won't go wrong up there. Jerrbear1580

petefoss
06-25-2007, 03:40 AM
We took Engineer pass and made it through just fine on the 22nd! No snow on the road but there was a bit of mud in a couple of places. My rented Durango did fine in 4 wheel lock. Man, a couple of those hairpins between Animan Forks and Engineer Pass are hairy! I'm not sure I'd like to do them in the other direction. Uphill seems easier when the "road" is that rough. At least to a rookie.

bellmd
06-25-2007, 11:09 AM
We'll be there next week although in a rental 4WD so I'm not sure we are brave enough to try either pass.

Guess we'll tough it out and drive up to 50 and across. Sure am looking forward to seeing Lake City and Silverton!

JuneNY
06-26-2007, 07:00 PM
while in Silverton, take some time to explore a bit, there are some abandoned and empty buildings and the old jail is interesting.

When you drive north on the Million Dollar Highway, you will pass some ghost towns, too.

One in particular, has a mine on the left hand side of the road and a few old houses on the right hand side. Its not listed on Ghosttowns.com and I have never been able to find any information about it.

bellmd
06-27-2007, 12:38 PM
Any chance it is Chattanooga?

petefoss
06-28-2007, 02:41 PM
Here we are at the top of Engineer pass. Thanks for all the encouragement. We had a blast going over the top!

LauraA
06-28-2007, 04:14 PM
Ahhhhh Thanks for that cool look at the snow....it sure looks appealing on a 110 day like today!

petefoss
06-28-2007, 04:50 PM
You want snow, look how much there was as we started down the road towards Lake City from the pass.

LauraA
06-28-2007, 05:06 PM
Wow that looks GREAT!

This was taken just minutes ago, in the shade. :eek:


972

Darin
06-28-2007, 08:07 PM
:rolleyes: I'm thinkin could be sweater weather myself:D

speedy
06-29-2007, 05:32 AM
WOW, Pete, great pics, thanks.......and Laura....stay inside in the A/C ....Speedy

Mikejts
07-02-2007, 08:49 PM
Laura,

Oh to get back to Colorado. I am in AZ now and it is HOT>>>

By the way you might want to look up the TV schedule for this:Science Channel (Discovery)
Geologic Journey
The Rockies
TV-G (http://javascript<b></b>:%20void(null);), CC


It will cool you off.

LauraA
07-03-2007, 04:16 AM
Rocky, Colorado is sounding more and more appealing. Tomorrow's temps (7/4) are supposed to be record breaking for this area. All excursions are on hold and we're into hibernation mode. :(
Arizona is still a super place to live MOST of the year.

JuneNY
08-13-2007, 11:16 AM
no, it was not Chatanooga. We found that easily. It was further north. On the left hand side of the road, there is a building with a sign that says the name of the mine. It might be "Olsens's Mine", and on the other side of the road are some old buildings, I am guessing one was a house and the other a business like a restaurant or store.

40FORDJIM
08-13-2007, 01:04 PM
Sounds a little like Ironton !

Mikejts
08-13-2007, 01:39 PM
no, it was not Chatanooga. We found that easily. It was further north. On the left hand side of the road, there is a building with a sign that says the name of the mine. It might be "Olsens's Mine", and on the other side of the road are some old buildings, I am guessing one was a house and the other a business like a restaurant or store.


Did it look like the pictures here? http://www.rockymountainprofiles.com/Summit.htm (http://www.rockymountainprofiles.com/Summit.htm)

40FORDJIM
09-12-2007, 07:30 AM
We will be heading back to Silverton pretty soon for our annual Fall Color trip. Should be there about a week. It is absolutely beautiful in Aspen gold !!

Gravelrash
09-12-2007, 04:37 PM
Did it look like the pictures here? http://www.rockymountainprofiles.com/Summit.htm

Mike - your site says these buildings were possibly slated for demolition. PLEASE tell me that didn't happen!:eek:

By the way, petefoss - many thanks for those incredible photos. They really whet the whistle.

40FORDJIM
09-12-2007, 05:48 PM
Gravelrash,
Go to Colorado,Ouray County, then Summit on this website and you will see pictures of the structure after it was bulldozed down. I think this happened in 2002. What a shame.

Mikejts
09-12-2007, 06:09 PM
Just back from Lake city, silverton and Ouray. went over engineer pass, cinnamon pass, stoney Pass, California pass, and hurricane to mention just a few. Have close to 1000 pictures including carson, guston, ironton, etc etc. Will be posting on my site over the next couple months.

No snow and colors were just beginning to change,

Mikejts
09-12-2007, 06:17 PM
Mike - your site says these buildings were possibly slated for demolition. PLEASE tell me that didn't happen!:eek:

By the way, petefoss - many thanks for those incredible photos. They really whet the whistle.

Unfortunately it was obviously gone when I went over the pass. A real heart breaker. On the other hand it appears the Colorado Historical society and the San Juan society are finaly making a real effort to perserve some history. They have postings at numerous sites. The main problem is that the efforts are supported by volunteers (great people) but they can't be on site 24x7 so the idiot vandals still get to the sites. Makes me wish it was legal to stay on site, post an all vandals will be shot sign and then enforce it.

Gravelrash
09-12-2007, 09:37 PM
That's very sad news.
If only the various "authorities" realised what a tourism "gold mine" ( :rolleyes: ) these old sites actually are. I know a few Aussies who are very keen to travel America, like me, and they have NO INTEREST in "Disneyland-ing" it!!
America's past is too valuable to trash.
It's hard for me to comment because, the more I explore your country the more apparent it is that "the way things are done" is very different but, surely, there has to be some sanity prevailing...somewhere?
In other forums, on other topics, I've encountered the idea of an "American crisis of confidence", which is seeing many Americans adopt the strangest anti-American positions. Perhaps this disregard of their heritage is part and parcel of that "crisis"?
Very sad.

JuneNY
09-14-2007, 04:03 AM
no, its not Chatanooga, its further north.

JuneNY
09-14-2007, 04:06 AM
no, those pictures are not the place I am talking about. Actually, there is a sign that says the name of the town or at least the name of the mine, but I cannot find my pictures of it right now.

Mikejts
10-14-2007, 03:08 PM
no, those pictures are not the place I am talking about. Actually, there is a sign that says the name of the town or at least the name of the mine, but I cannot find my pictures of it right now.


Look at these two sites. Is it either one?

http://www.rockymountainprofiles.com/Ironton%20Colorado.htm

http://www.rockymountainprofiles.com/Guston%20Colorado.htm

Gravelrash
10-15-2007, 12:56 PM
Gravelrash,
Go to Colorado,Ouray County, then Summit on this website and you will see pictures of the structure after it was bulldozed down. I think this happened in 2002. What a shame.

Jim, sorry I didn't reply earlier. I had seen the Summit post earlier on on my GT-ing history but after reading more posts and then going back and looking again, I'm in some sort of mourning.
That is not only a tragic event, it has to be way over the line as cultural vandalism.


This fellow Baumgartner is trying to sell home lots in the area, and owns land upon which many, many historic structures currently exist, but apparently not for long, if he has his way. He also plans to sell off the headframe to the Yankee Girl mine in the same area, and the new owner will dismantle it and ship it to Montrose, Colorado, to be part of some manufactured "ghost town" there. This fellow is already one of the most hated men in Ouray and San Juan counties because of his actions, and we need to make our voice heard throughout the ghostowner's world and try to do everything we can to stop this thing from happening again. -Cary Nickel

Couldn't have said it better!

Then you see posts like Mikejts
http://www.rockymountainprofiles.com...20Colorado.htm
http://www.rockymountainprofiles.com...20Colorado.htm
and realise those gems could suffer the same fate!

Maybe a Senator or some "gubmint man" needs to be taken on a very well organised Colorado ghost towning trip, with some passionate and informed people in the entourage, and have the realities shoved in his face? Have any of the decision makers ever actually BEEN to a ghost town site? You busy, Mike?
I'll help kick the can. It's something armchair travellers could do and feel involved and the possibility of saving Ironton....what a spur that is.
What would it cost - divided by 20+ people?
You'd only have to put up with the Senators hot air for a day or two, tops!!

40FORDJIM
10-15-2007, 06:41 PM
My wife & I just spent the last week of September in Silverton. The Fall colors were beautiful even though a lot of leaves were down by the time we left. There was a lot of color heading either north or south out of Silverton. A lot of the jeep trail passes were closed due to ice ! Got to see the old steam locomotive that used to be in the city park in Durango in action in Silverton. It is fully restored and running fine.

caver
10-19-2007, 08:09 PM
This is my motorcycle close to California pass. Roughly the 3rd week of June this year.
http://caver.smugmug.com/photos/167645232-M.jpg