Situated at an elevation of 10,152 feet, Leadville is the highest incorporated city in the United States. It is located in the heart of the Colorado Rockies about 100 miles west of Denver. For our visit to Leadville, we parked at Sugar Loafin’ Campground. From the streets of Leadville, looking west you will see the two tallest of Colorado’s “fourteeners”: Mount Elbert which peaks at 14,440 feet and Mount Massive at 14,428 feet. After California’s Mount Whitney, Mount Elbert is the second highest peak in the contiguous United States.
We wanted to visit Denver and the surrounding area so we parked in nearby Wheat Ridge, CO, at Prospect RV Park, about 12 miles west of the heart of downtown Denver.
We didn’t get around as much as we had intended due to a couple of complications. However, we did check out the town of Boulder, home to the University of Colorado, and the town of Arvada.
We chose to spend the Labor Day holiday period in Cheyenne, WY, the capital city for Wyoming. In Cheyenne, we were parked at A.B. Camping.
The location that became Cheyenne, was originally the site chosen as the point at which the Union Pacific Railroad would cross Crow Creek, a tributary of the South Platte River. Once the railroad was completed, Cheyenne grew rapidly. Today, Cheyenne is still a very important rail hub. In Holliday Park you can see one of the eight surviving world’s largest steam locomotives, nicknamed “Big Boy”.
Wheatland sort of amounted to a time filler for us. We had booked a spot in Cheyenne for the Labor Day period some time ago and needed to fill a couple of days before going to Cheyenne. In Wheatland we parked at Mountain View RV Park.
We took advantage of our proximity to the Fort Laramie National Historic Site to make a day trip out there. Located at the confluence of the Laramie River and the North Platte River, Fort Laramie was founded in the 1830’s to service the overland fur trade during the middle 19th century. It was a primary resupply point for those traveling along the Oregon Trail. In 1849, the Army purchased the site in order to provide protection for the many emigrants travelling though this region. Later on, Fort Laramie became central to issues which arose between the local Native American tribes and the growing emigrants and settlers. A number of treaties were negotiated and signed here. After the completion of the transcontinental railroad, the importance of Fort Laramie gradually decreased until it was decommissioned in 1890.
Next stop: Cheyenne, WY