Passage from prairie to high plains
If you had been standing on this spot for the last 10,000 years, you would have seen the history of Colorado progress below you. This ancient route through the Rocky Mountains is named for Colorado’s Ute Indians who made yearly treks down this pass to visit the springs in Manitou and hunt buffalo on the plains.
Spanish and American explorers followed the trail. Major Lon’s expedition of 1820 stopped for a lunch on bison ribs near the springs at the bottom of the pass. In his diary he noted “a large and frequented road passes the springs and ascends into the mountains.”
Gold prospectors by the thousands led their burros up the old trail, followed by freighters hauling supplies to the gold camps. Timber cutters, ranchers and the first standard gauge railroad to cross the Rocky Mountains would their way up the pass. El Paso County was named for this important route that would become the first “Ocean to Ocean” Highway.
In the resort town of Cascade just below you would have seen the tower of the famous Ramona Hotel, the summer retreat of presidents and politicians. The Cascade Town Company backed by the Colorado Midland Railway helped to build the Carriage Road to the summit of Pike Peak.
Erected by City of Colorado
Location. 38° 53.96′ N, 104° 58.759′ W. Marker is near Colorado Springs, Colorado, in El Paso County. Marker is on Pike's Peak Highway, on the left when traveling south. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Cascade CO 80809, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 3 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Welcome to America’s Mountain (approx. 0.7 miles away); Forests Without Fire (approx. 0.7 miles away); A New Home in the Hills (approx. 0.7 miles away); Well-traveled Water (approx. 2.9 miles away); Test Your Bird I.Q. (approx. 2.9 miles away); The Making of America's Mountain (approx. 2.9 miles away); A Mountain of Many Names (approx. 2.9 miles away); Take a Closer Look...Foothills Life Zone (approx. 2.9 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Colorado Springs.
Categories. • Natural Features • Roads & Vehicles •
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on August 7, 2011, by Charles T. Harrell of Woodford, Virginia. This page has been viewed 731 times since then and 77 times this year. Photos: 1, 2. submitted on August 7, 2011, by Charles T. Harrell of Woodford, Virginia. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page.