Trains and Trout
Before there was a reservoir here, three towns existed along the banks of the Gunnison River. The Denver & Rio Grande Railroad hauled both freight and passengers to the towns of Iola, Cebolla, and Sapinero. Sightseers came for the Rocky Mountain scenery. Anglers came for the legendary trout of the Gunnison River.
As automobiles grew in popularity, the railroad industry could no longer be financially competitive. Train service to the three towns ended in 1954. Tourism dropped hard and the local economy suffered. An idea was proposed that could rejuvenate the economy — create a reservoir. The buildings of the towns were either moved or destroyed. The town sites of Iola, Cebolla, and Sapinero are now underwater.
The town of Iola was just southeast of here at what is now Iola Boat Ramp. Iola was a crucial source of supplies for nearby gold and copper camps, and an important railroad hub for shipping cattle.
Erected by National Park Service.
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Parks & Recreational Areas
Location. 38° 28.803′ N, 107° 6.576′ W. Marker is near Gunnison, Colorado, in Gunnison County. Marker is off U.S. 50, on the left when traveling west. Marker is along the road leading into the North Willow Area of Curecanti National Recreation Area, about 11 miles west of Gunnison. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Gunnison CO 81230, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 11 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Riverfront Recreation (approx. 4.9 miles away); a different marker also named Trains and Trout (approx. 5.1 miles away); Forming a Pinnacle (approx. 8.4 miles away); If You Only Knew (approx. 8.4 miles away); Wayne N. Aspinall (approx. 10.6 miles away); Crossing the Canyon (approx. 10.6 miles away); Vienna Bakery / Johnson Restaurant Building (approx. 10.9 miles away); Columbine High School Memorial (approx. 10.9 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Gunnison.
Also see . . .
1. Curecanti National Recreation Area History & Culture. (Submitted on October 28, 2020, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania.)
2. Drought has revealed for the first time a Colorado town flooded to build a reservoir. (2018)(Submitted on October 28, 2020, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania.)
3. Remembering Iola (Montrose Press, 2019). (Submitted on October 28, 2020, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania.)
Credits. This page was last revised on October 28, 2020. It was originally submitted on October 28, 2020, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania. This page has been viewed 134 times since then and 29 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on October 28, 2020, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania.