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Steamboat Springs Day Trips

Cultural Heritage in Steamboat Springs

Community Legacy

This remote northwest region of Colorado had long-served as the Ute Indians’ summertime hunting grounds. Later, trappers and mountain men pursued small game to sell the hides to the fur traders. Legend has it that French fur trappers thought the spring along the Yampa River sounded like a steamboat.

In 1875 James Crawford arrived with his family to file a homestead claim and establish what would become the town of Steamboat Springs. Rugged homesteaders soon followed to raise cattle or sheep. Others established businesses or worked in the nearby gold and coalmines.

The town remained isolated until the arrival of the Denver, Northwest and Pacific Railroad in 1908. The rail line from Denver across the Continental Divide enabled year-round transportation of livestock and coal as well as passenger travel. Today, the railroad still transports coal from the region.

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Take the Tour

Start at the Depot on the west side of Steamboat. All sites are located on, or directly off of, highway 40 with the exception of Perry-Mansfield on County Road 36.

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1. Eleanor Bliss Center for the Arts at the Depot

Location: 1001 13th St.

By 1913 the Steamboat Springs’ Depot was the largest cattle shipping center in the country. Placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1978, “The Art Depot” is now a thriving art and community center where you can enjoy exhibits, classes, and performances. More Info

Art Depot

2. Howelsen Park

Location: Howelsen Parkway

This City Park includes the oldest operating ski hill in Colorado and is named for Norwegian ski champion, Carl Howelsen, who introduced the community to ski jumping and recreational skiing. The all-season sports complex is home to the Steamboat Springs Winter Sports Club, a training organization for aspiring and Olympic athletes. More Info

Howeslen Ski Jumping

3. Perry–Mansfield Performing Arts School and Camp

Location: 40755 County Road 36

Charlotte Perry and Portia Mansfield’s dream of creating a theatre and dance camp in the mountains of Steamboat Springs was fulfilled in 1915. Today, the School and Camp is recognized as the oldest continuously operating performing arts school and camp in the nation. More Info

Perry Mansfield

4. Tread of Pioneers Museum

Location: Downtown, 800 Oak St.

Set in a 1908 Queen Anne-style Victorian home, the Museum engages visitors in exploring the region’s legacy of Native Americans, ranching, mining, and pioneers. Trace the history of skiing, ski jumping, and Olympic heritage in Steamboat Springs in the Ski Town U.S.A.® exhibit. More Info

Tread Of Pioneers

5. Old Town Hot Springs

Location: Downtown, 136 Lincoln Ave.

The Ute Indians, who summered in the valley long before the arrival of settlers, believed the area’s natural mineral springs had healing and spiritual powers. Pioneers enjoyed the “heart spring” and its 103-degree waters as early as 1875. Old Town Hot Springs has provided locals and visitors a place to rejuvenate and relax for over 100 years. More Info

Hot Springs Top 10

6. Legacy / Hutchinson Ranch

Location: 35435 Highway 40

The 130-acre ranch preserves the high country farming and ranching history of northwest Colorado. This ranch has been operating and intact since 1899 and continues to demonstrate a time-honored way of life.

Legacy Ranch

7. Mesa Schoolhouse

Location: 33985 Highway 40

Built in 1916, the school served grades one through eight until rural school district consolidation was complete in 1959. The Schoolhouse was restored in 2000 with the support of Historic Routt County and gifted to the City of Steamboat Springs for use as a community meeting center.

Mesa School House Summer

More Info on Steamboat Springs

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