Park County Real Estate
The Ute tribe was the predominant Native American group to occupy the Park County area, starting in the fourteenth or fifteenth century. Beginning in 1859, the Colorado Gold Rush brought non-native settlements to Park County. Due to mining and related activities at that time, the Gold Rush era was estimated to have brought about ten thousand people to the Park County area. In 1861, Park County became one one of the original seventeen counties in the Colorado territory. The county seat was initially in Tarryall and then in another mining community. However, in 1867, the county seat moved to Fairplay, where it has resided ever since. The railroad reached Park County in 1879, followed soon thereafter by telegraph lines.
Eventually mining in Park County declined with tourism and ranching becoming the major industries. As of 2012, Park County ranchers raised a combined herd of 6,565 cattle and calves. Native hay is the top crop. Popular outdoor activities for tourists (and locals alike) include cross-country skiing, fishing, hiking, mountain biking, and snow shoeing. Park County now has a total area of 2,211 square miles and a permanent population of 16,206 (as of the 2010 census). There are significant variations in the elevation across Park County, ranging anywhere from 7,000 to 14,000 feet. Park County includes the incorporated towns of Alma and Fairplay as well as other unincorporated communities like Bailey, Como, Grant, Hartsel, Jefferson, Lake George and Shawnee. The geographic center of the state of Colorado is actually located in Park County.
In 1949, Park County became home to Burro Days, an annual multi-day event that always takes place the last full weekend in July. As part of the festival, there races that send runners twenty-nine miles to the top of Mosquito Pass and back with a burro. Nowadays, Burro Days also includes a pancake breakfast, lama races, gold panning, a parade, local musical entertainment, a BBQ & barn dance and almost 150 arts, craft and food booths.
Park County is home to a number of fourteeners, which are mountains twith an elevation of at least 14,000 feet. Mount Lincoln, Mount Democrat, Mount Cameron, and Mount Bross are accessible via a single trailhead at Kite Lake. Further south, Mount Sherman actually resides partially in Park County and partially in Lake County. Park County is also home to a several federal recreation areas. The most prominent is Pike National Forest which is home to many popular fishing and camping areas and has 1,106,604 acres spread across six counties including Park County. The Mount Evans Wilderness, Lost Creek Wilderness, and Buffalo Peaks Wilderness areas are all located at least partly within Pike National Forest and Park County. The Eleven Mile Canyon Recreation Area is located below the dam of the Eleven Mile Reservoir near Lake George. Established in 1964, the Windy Ridge Bristlecone Pine Scenic Area allows hikers or skiers to see bristlecone pine trees that are more than a thousand years old and have been warped by the wind.
Park County Homes for Sale
(displayed below by newest listing first)