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Telluride Named Colorado’s Most Charming Town

Fly Fishing Telluride

DENVER (KDVR) — There are lots of ghost towns and small Wild West towns in Colorado, but according to Reader’s Digest, one is particularly charming.

Skiing, cultural events, festivals, music and performing arts revived the town. Bringing it to earn its spot as the most charming small town in Colorado, according to Reader’s Digest.

Reader’s Digest highlighted Telluride’s scenery as it is situated in a canyon and surrounded by mountains. Making it ideal for many outdoor activities including hiking in the summer and world-class skiing in the winter.

The small town in the San Juan Mountains has drawn travelers for hundreds of years. It was used by Ute Indians as a summer camp for centuries before Spanish explorers discovered it in the 1700s, according to the town’s website.

The town, originally called Columbia, brought fortune-seeking gold diggers in the 1800s. In the late 1800s a mining camp was established in the mid-1870s and, in 1878, it officially became a town by the name of Telluride.

Aerial view of Main Street old western ski town of Telluride in autumn color surrounded by mountains. (Photo by: Joe Sohm/Visions of America/Universal Images Group via Getty Images)

A railroad built in 1890 helped Telluride grow to 5,000 residents and become a “melting pot of immigrants” seeking fortune in the charming town.

That wouldn’t last though, with the silver price crash in 1893 started a decline. That decline culminated when World War I drove miners out of the town and the population dwindled to the hundreds.

Becoming A Ski Town

It wasn’t until the 1970s that Telluride would become a thriving town again. But instead of digging for fortune, “legendary powder – a different sort of gold – was being mined,” the website says.

The Telluride Ski Resort opened in 1972 with 1 lift that year. That’s when, according to the website, “the character of the community changed.”

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