Mining played a tremendous role in the Centennial State and still does to this day. This image shows a trestle above the old Idarado Mine on Red Mountain Pass south of Ouray.
Surrounded by a ghost town now, the mine used to produce lead, silver, zinc, gold and copper. During World War II, the lead and zinc was critical to the war effort. Shut down in 1979, the site has undergone reclamation to repair the damage caused by the mining operations. This trestle remains, part of a system that carried the ore to the bottom of the hill for processing.
My grandfather in fact was a coal miner west of Trinidad until those mines were all shut down. Working the mines was incredibly difficult, back-breaking labor that claimed many lives during their operation and afterwards (i.e. black lung in the case of coal mining).
It is hard to imagine working under those conditions, let alone at 10,000+ foot altitude.
When we visited this site a couple weeks ago, it was mid-morning without a cloud in the sky so coming up with a decent composition was kind of tough. Putting the sun bursting through the trestle and a conversion to black and white make for a kind of neat shot.
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