Red Cliff, Colorado

Red Cliff bridge from US Highway 24

Red Cliff was founded in 1879 by miners crossing over Tennessee Pass from Leadville diuring the great Colorado Silver Boom. They were looking for more (and better) silver lodes and the town site looked like a nice, central place to some of the larger diggings. The name came from the red quartzite cliffs that surround the town.

As the first settlement in the Eagle Valley, Red Cliff served as the Eagle County seat until that was moved to the town of Eagle in 1921.

The town these days consists of a cluster of historic buildings, older homes and converted trailers on the sides of the canyon above the Eagle River. Some of the older buildings have been remodeled and refurbed into modern business establishments and one of the larger buildings is now an inn.

Red Cliff has been seeing a bit of a renaissance in recent years due to the popularity and expansion of ski resorts in the area. In 2008, the town annexed about 4,000 acres (including the abandoned mining town of Gilman just to the north) for a proposed Battle Mountain Resort.

Looking down on the remains of the abandoned town of Gilman
The abandoned town of Gilman
Photos are courtesy of TheArmchairExplorer, CCA-by-SA 4.0 License