Photos: Tour One of Colorado’s Oldest Ghost Towns in St. Elmo
WARNING: Under no circumstances should you enter this property. By doing so you risk bodily harm and/or prosecution for trespassing on private property.
Founded in 1880, it was said the residents of St. Elmo took the last train out of town and never came back. Let's take a look at what things look like today in what is called the best-preserved ghost town in Colorado.
St. Elmo, Colorado Began in 1880 near Nathrop
Located in the Chalk Creek Canyon near Buena Vista, Colorado, St. Elmo is about 215 miles from Grand Junction, or about a four-hour and twenty-minute drive down Highway 50.
The historic mining town of St. Elmo was founded in 1880 and flourished for less than a decade. It is considered one of the best-preserved ghost towns in the West. It is located in Chalk Creek Canyon near Buena Vista at an elevation of about 10,000 feet.
Silver, the railroad, and some of the earliest miners in Colorado spent time in the St. Elmo area. In fact, once the mine started to slow the railroad decided to pull out of St. Elmo making it very difficult for further development. Some of the photos in the gallery below will show a few old train cars still sitting in the depot.
The St. Elmo Historic District is on the National Register of Historic Places
The wood-frame structures in St. Elmo are thought to have been built between 1880 and about 1917. So many of these original houses and buildings are still standing and in pretty good shape. Old newspapers printed by the St. Elmo Mountaineer that used to provide insulation between the wood-framed buildings have fallen out onto the old cabin floors and can still be seen today.
Tour Colorado’s Most Well-Preserved Ghost Towns in St. Elmo
Technically, there are 3 residents listed in St. Elmo Colorado as recently as 2018. There are a handful of groups and organizations committed to rebuilding the town or at least preserving it. Several videos on Youtube like the one we will see today show that the town is easy to explore with many of the doors unlocked for those who wish to look while treating this community with the utmost respect. It's almost hallowed ground here in the Centennial State.