Ward, Co., named after Calvin Ward, was one of the richest towns in the state of Colorado. One mine is said to have produced over 2 million ounces of silver alone. Calvin located the first claim in 1860, and the boom came the next year when the Columbia vein was located. The population varied over the next 40 years from 400 to about a thousand and sometimes more. The first train was built into the area in 1898 and it came from Boulder. As ore became easier to ship out of the town more people came in and soon there were 250 people a day riding the train to and from Ward. In 1901, a devastating fire leveled 50 buildings, but being a sturdy camp, Ward was immediately rebuilt. Today there are still people living in Ward and it is said there is enough gold under the town to warrant razing the buildings and mining it out.
Town Known For: Today the town is most popular for its surrounding natural wonders. Endless trail networks in the Roosevelt National Forest, including pathways at Brainard Lake, a popular hiking, camping, and snowshoeing area, lie just west of the rustic village. To the east is the historic Gold Lake area. The panoramic views of both the Continental Divide and the flatlands of eastern Colorado, first inspired Araphos, Utes, and other Native American tribes, who also harvested Gold Lake's lodgepole pine for teepees. Later, in the late 1800s, miners created a gold rush district here, but found no riches. The pristine land has since been used for many retreat centers, but currently operates as the Gold Lake resort and spa. The upscale center offers gourmet dining, spa therapies, scenic lakeside hotpools, and restored cabins.
Region: Northern Front Range Regional Information
Proximity to other towns: Located 17.6 miles from Boulder, 7.6 miles from Nederland, 8.9 miles from Jamestown, 9 miles from Allenspark
Elevation: 9,160 feet
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