Colorado Day

Post by Doris McCraw

edit hhj spc

August 1 is Colorado Day. For many years the state of Colorado celebrated big on this day, but over the years many have forgotten what the celebration stands for, not that they don’t celebrate. To let you in on the reason, it was on this day in 1876 that Colorado became the 38th state in the Union, hence the name “The Centennial State”. Yes, I believe Michner took that piece of information to name is book about Colorado “Centennial”.

So what do Coloradans do to celebrate? Well, we allow everyone to visit any of our forty-two state parks and 350 wildlife areas for free. The rest of us, well, we’ll go to work.


In honor of this day, I’ll share some tidbits about this ‘Colorful’ state.

  1. At 104,094 square miles, Colorado is the eighth largest state in terms of land.
  2. The state is named for the Colorado River, which got its name for the ruddy silt Spanish travelers saw in the water.
  3. Colorado has over 50 peaks above 14,000 feet. The tallest is Mount Elbert, near Leadville, Colorado at 14,439 feet.
  4. Pikes Peak is the tallest peak, 14, 115 feet, in the Southern Front Range. The nearest mountain peak its height or taller is at least sevety miles away. It is one of the few fourteeners in Colorado that has no other peak of its altitude nearby.
  5. For a number of years it was believed the mountains in Colorado could not be crossed by the people traveling west with their wagons.
  6. Colorado is the only U.S. state that lies entirely above 1000 meters elevation. Its lowest point, 3,317 feet (1,011 m) in elevation is the highest low elevation point of any state, and is higher than the highest elevation points of 18 states. Colorado contains 75% of the land area of the U.S. with an altitude over 10,000 feet
  7. Pikes Peak Cog Railway is the highest cog railway train in the world.
  8. The world’s largest flat-top mountain is the ‘Grand Mesa’ in western Colorado
  9. The Dwight Eisenhower Memorial Tunnel between Clear Creek and Summit counties is the highest auto tunnel in the world. Bored at an elevation of 11,000 feet under the Continental Divide it is 8,960 feet long and the average daily traffic exceeds 26,000 vehicles
  10. The tallest sand dune in America is in Great Sand Dunes National Monument outside of Alamosa. This bizarre 46,000-acre landscape of 700-foot sand peaks was the creation of ocean waters and wind more than one million years ago

I’ll throw in an eleventh one for fun: 11. Leadville is the highest incorporated city in the United States at 10,430 feet elevation. Because there was lots of ‘silver’ named towns at the time, the founding fathers suggested Leadville


For those of you who would enjoy more about my adopted state, here are some links you might like to check out:

and last a video on the ‘Prayer Trees in Fox Run Park’ near Colorado Springs.

Angela Raines is the pen name for Doris McCraw. Doris also writes haiku posted five days a week at – and has now passed one thousand haiku and photos posted on this blog. Check out her other work or like her Angela Raines Amazon author page:

Current Publications Available:

“One Hot Knight” Summer Medieval Anthology

“One Christmas Knight” Medieval Anthology

“Angel of Salvation Valley”







23 thoughts on “Colorado Day

  1. Abbie, a lot of folks don’t know it, even those who live here. I’ve been through Fowler and it is a nice little town, from what I saw. I will check out your memoir for I know it will be a deeply moving read. Doris

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Doris, I loved all the facts, but I really enjoyed the video about the trees. Since I was raised surrounded by woods, I hold a fascination of trees. They were my childhood friends. Thanks Cher’ley


    1. Cherley, It is an amazing video, isn’t it. A writer acquaintence took up the study of these trees and has written a lot about them. Like you, trees were a part of my childhood and I do love being around them. Glad you enjoyed the post and the video. Doris

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Fun and educational post, Doris! I think your adopted state is very beautiful. I’m planning to take my parents to Estes Park/Rocky Mountain Park in September for the elk bugling — my dad’s favorite animal is the elk. 🙂 Hope you had a very happy Colorado Day, Doris!


    1. I worked, so yes I really did have a great Colorado Day. Estes & Rocky Mtn. Park are fabulous. The Elk bugling is not to be missed. You all enjoy. Doris


  4. Lots was happing around America in its Centennial Year of 1876, but I’d have to say adding the state of Colorado to the Stars and Stripes tops everything. Something else I would have liked to have taken in back in 1876… The Centennial Exposition held in Philadelphia. One write-up I found on it: “The Expo was the product of 10 years of planning and hard work, and the results were astonishing. Some 30,000 exhibits from the “Arts, Manufactures and Products of the Soil and Mine” filled massive exhibit halls spread over 450 acres in Philadelphia’s Fairmount Park. While nearly every nation in the world exhibited at the Expo, it showcased the rapidly developing industrial power and abundant natural resources of the United States.”


    1. You have that right Mike, 1876 was a year to remember. The story of Colorado’s journey to statehood is pretty interesting. I may have to write about that one of these days.

      I will say the expos back then were something. Oh to time travel. **Grin** Doris


    1. Linda, I moved here with friends from college who just had to live in Colorado. I really didn’t care that much. They’re gone and I’m still here. In fact they can’t really get me away. **Grin** Doris


  5. Brilliant! Love the info and I especially like the naming of Leadville when gold and silver was very popular for town names. Lead might have been less lustrous but so practical. 😉


    1. Nancy, you are correct about the lead. I do love sharing the ‘unique’ things about where I live. Perhaps it’s the history lover, or I just think they’re fun. Glad you enjoyed, for I do love it here. Doris


  6. I like CO. Been to the Rockies a few times. Any time I see or hear “Pike’s Peak” I inwardly chuckle. My dad had a battered RV that we drove around the country during the summer. He tried to drive it up Pike’s Peak at a snail’s pace. We had a line of cars behind us and remember cyclist on bikes that may (or may not) have passed us. He eventually pulled over to let cars pass, but we had no more momentum and had to do an awkward turn around.


    1. Travis, I can relate. Although I’ve been to the top of said peak about 7 times, the one I remember was driving up in a 4-cylinder car with three other people. The vehicle in front stopped and we couldn’t get going, so the others piled out and I drove the last 400 yards to the top.
      I confess, once they got me here, they’ve had a hard time getting me to leave. **Smile**. Doris


  7. Interesting facts about Colorado, thanks, Doris! My one memory (and it’s a memory that I’ll treasure forever) is auditioning and qualifying for Ballet West’s summer school in Snowmass. I was 11, my first year of pointe. It was gorgeous and we danced outdoors underneath these huge canopy-like tents. It was incredible to be dancing with these huge mountains looming in the background. It was my first time in CO and I’ll never forget it. What a beautiful state!


    1. Sarah, what a beautiful memory. I could see it in my mind as I read what you wrote. Colorado, like other states has so many things we don’t know, and I for one have this need to share. Doris

      Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s