Gold. Flecks of light. Valuable. Fleeting. Reflection of value. Mining minerals in the mountains of Colorado occurred throughout the 1800’s. The miners brought their heritages with them and named the town Como, after Lake Como in Italy. But there is only a small lake.
“Make the poles of acacia wood and overlay them with gold.” Exodus 30:15 NIV
I have been to both Como and Lake Como in Italy, and believe the miners had great imagination and homesick feelings to see any similarity in the dry landscape of Colorado with a very small lake, and the magnificent green lushness of Lake Como in Italy.
The discovery of coal in the area created a boomtown and was mined until late 1890’s.
The Boreas Pass road leaves the small village of Como, Colorado on Highway 285 and climbs a steep mountain.
It follows the railroad bed that was built in 1884 to bring precious minerals from Leadville to Denver. It still feels like driving on a bumpy train track.
The 21 mile road to Breckinridge is a mostly two lane road which rewards the intrepid drivers with beautiful mountains and the abundance of quaking gold, orange, and green Aspens.
It is windy at the 11,300 feet Boreas Pass summit. There is still the old railroad station and a train car sits on abandoned tracks. The Denver, Leadville, and Gunnison Railroad constructed the shortest route between Leadville and Denver and time was money.
Once a thriving settlement at least in the warmer months, it is a picture of life 100 years ago for miners. Harsh winters with ten feet of snow piled around the tracks and buildings made for challenging living conditions.
The road was constructed in the 1950s and Rocky Point looks out to the east to Tarryall creek and mountains. The Baker water tank was moved close to the summit in 1910 in order to service the steam locomotives.
Boreas means “God of the North Winds” and the name is fitting. The wind was howling even if we are seeing it in the beautiful golden fall with warm sun filtering the light through the Aspens.
The traffic jam into Breckinridge was expected as everyone loves gold.
What season is your favorite? Why? How do you celebrate the changing seasons?