30 Dec 2011

Mount Falcon (Last Run of 2011)

Strange weather - yesterday winds hit 81 MPH. Today it was 62F and sunny. Perfect day for a good trail run, aside from mud

Went to Morrison, the town where Red Rocks Amphitheatre is, and ran Mount Falcon - about 8.7 miles and 1,875' of gain. It was a bit of a mellow run at times with stops at the summit as there were several historical areas

Views from the trail head - looking East to Denver

Looking south

Red Rocks Amphitheatre (somewhere there)

At the summit area of Mount Falcon is an old fire watch tower

I was using another camera we have and forgot how good it is. I can zoom to 40x

This used to be the summer cabin for the Denver businessman Frank Kirchhof


The Walker Home ruins. John Brisben Walker was a magazine publisher and automobile entrepreneur who bought 4,000 acres on Mount Falcon. Sadly, his castle burned after being hit by lightning

Maybe 3/4 a mile away John tried to build a "Summer White House" for the President in 1911. Fundraising wasn't successful. Per Deb Stanley in the Denver Hiking Examiner:

John Brisben Walker made a fortune on land speculation in West Virginia and his purchase of Cosmo Magazine. He bought over 4,000 acres of land in what is now Jefferson County. Walker built a beautiful stone castle for himself and his wife.

Then he decided to build a summer home for the Presidents of the United States on a ridge to the east of his home. Thousands of school children in Colorado each donated 10 cents to Walker's dream. A marble cornerstone with the words "Summer Home for the Presidents of the United States, gift from the People of Colorado, 1911" was laid out and construction began.

But America got involved in World War I and due to a lack of money the project near went very far. Then Walker's wife died and his own castle caught on fire.