Nick Name: Centennial State/ Colorful Colorado
Year Colorado became a state: 1876
Travel Zone: Mountain standard
State motto: “ Nil Sine Numine” – Nothing Without Providence
Highest Point: 14.433 ft – Mount Elbert
Lowest elevation: span> 3.315 ft – the Arikaree River.
Average altitude: 6.800 ft
Average days of sunshine per year : 300
State Flag: Designed by Andrew C Johnson in 1911. the top and bottom stripes are blue, and the middle stripe white. On top of these stripes sits a circular red “C”, filled with a golden disk. The blue represent the skies, the gold is for the sunshine enjoyed by the state, the white represents the snowcapped mountains and the red represents the red colored earth.
Population: (2011) 5,116,796 – Source: U.S. Census Bureau
Ski Resorts: 26
National Parks: 4– Mesa Verde, Rocky mountain National Park, The Black Canyons of the Gunnison National park,Great Sand Dunes National Park and Reserve.
State Parks: 42
Scenic and Historic Byways: 25
Area: 104.100 Sq Miles- 8th Biggest State.
Major Rivers: Colorado river, Rio Grande river, Arkansas river, South Platte river
Major lakes: Grand lake, Blue mesa reservoir, John martin reservoir
State Bird: lark bunting
Rocky Mountain Bighorn sheep
State Insect: Colorado Hairstreak Butterfly
State Fish: Greenback Cutthroat trout
State Fossil: Stegosaurus
State Flower: Rocky mountain Columbine
State Tree: Colorado Blue Spruce
State Grass: strong Blue Gramma grass
State Gemstone: Aquamarine
State Soil: Seitz
Colorado Fun Facts
Highest, Tallest, Longest, Largest, Oldest
- The world’s largest flat-top mountain is in Grand Mesa.
- Trail Ridge Road, the highest continuous U.S. highway, leaves Rocky Mountain National Park on the east and soars to 12,183 feet as it crosses the Continental Divide to the Western Slope.
- The highest paved road in North America is the road to Mt. Evans off of I-70 from Idaho Springs. The road climbs up to 14,258 feet above sea level.
- Colorado has more microbreweries per capita than any other state.
- 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.
- Leadville is the highest incorporated city in the United States at 10,430 feet elevation. Because there were many “silver” named towns at the time, the founding fathers suggested Leadville.
- The tallest sand dunes in America are in Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve outside of Alamosa in south-central Colorado. This 149,512-acre landscape of 8,000-foot sand peaks was created by ocean waters and wind more than one million years ago.
- Colorado is home to 54 14,000-feet mountain peaks, more than any other state in the United States.
- Colorado has the highest mean altitude of all the states.
- The Kit Carson County Carousel in Burlington dates back to 1905, making it the oldest wooden merry-go-round in the United States. It is the only wooden carousel in America that still has its original paint.
- One of the highest suspension bridgees in the world is over the Royal Gorge near Canon City. The Royal Gorge Bridge spans the Arkansas River at a height of 1,053 feet.
- The world’s largest natural hot springs pool is located in Glenwood Springs. The two-block long pool is across the street from the historic Hotel Colorado, a favorite stop of former president Teddy Roosevelt.
- The highest point in Colorado is Mount Elbert at 14,433 feet.
- The oldest existing Colorado town, San Luis (in south central Colorado), was founded in 1851.
- A golf ball flies on average ten percent farther in Colorado than other states because of the altitude. It flies even farther at higher altitudes (above 7,000 feet).
- There are canyons deeper and narrower than the Black Canyon of the Gunnison, but no other canyon in North America combines this gorge’s depth with its width.
- Grand Lake, on the western side of Rocky Mountain National Park, is the largest natural lake in the state.
- Deep in the mountains of southwestern Colorado, Ouray is home to the world’s first park devoted exclusively to the sport of ice climbing. The park opened in 1995.
- The World’s First Rodeo was held on July 4th, 1869 in Deer Trail.
Mile High Trivia
- The 13th step of the state capital building in Denver is one mile above sea level.
- “Beulah red” is the name of the red marble that gives the Colorado State Capitol its distinctive splendor. Cutting, polishing, and installing the marble in the Capitol took six years, from 1894 to 1900. All of the “Beulah red” marble in the world went into the Capitol.
- Colfax Avenue in Denver is the longest continuous street in America.
- Denver has the largest city park system in the nation with 205 parks in city limits and 20,000 acres of parkland in the nearby mountains.
Historic Hot Spots
- Lieutenant Zebulon Montgomery Pike explored the southwest portion of the Louisiana Territory in 1806, and though he never climbed the peak that bears his name, he did publish a report that attracted a lot of interest to the area. In fact, a trip to the top of Pikes Peak in 1893 inspired Katherine Lee Bates to write the ballad “America the Beautiful.”
- In Fruita, the town folk celebrate ‘Mike the Headless Chicken Day.’ Seems that a farmer named L.A. Olsen cut off Mike’s head on September 10, 1945 in anticipation of a chicken dinner – and Mike lived for another 4 years without a head.
- The Stanley Hotel, in Estes Park, has a long list of celebrities and heads of state that have stayed at the luxurious 1909 hostelry, which was also said to be the inspiration behind author Stephen King’s novel The Shining.
- Greeley is home to the internationally acclaimed Greeley Independence Stampede, which dates back to the 1800s and features national rodeo events, live music performances from national headliners, carnivals and more.
- For 16 years. Bent’s Old Fort was the lifeblood of trade trappers and hunters along the Santa Fe Trail. The fort was created by two brothers, both of whom were known as good brokers
of peace with Indian nations in the area.Around 550 A.D, a basketmaker culture developed in south-western Colorado. Known as
- Ancestral Puebloans: this native tribe formed and built villages in rock canyons. Today parts of their intricate structures still stand at Mesa Verde National Park near Cortez, which was the first national park created solely to preserve the work of humans.