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Champion Mill - Leadville, CO
Posted by: Groundspeak Regular Member 94RedRover
N 39° 08.233 W 106° 30.245
13S E 370007 N 4333081
Quick Description: Champion Mill is part of a mining complex on the eastern slope of Mount Champion outside Leadville, Colorado.
Location: Colorado, United States
Date Posted: 12/5/2009 4:41:34 PM
Waymark Code: WM7V6C
Published By: Groundspeak Premium Member SearchN
Views: 3

Long Description:
In 1860, Abe Lee and the Slater Party discovered $8 million in gold in California Gulch on the outskirts of what is now Leadville, Colorado. The "Gold Rush" had begun. Thousands flocked to "Oro City", as the settlement was called, to stake their claim of the golden fortunes. By the mid 1860s, however, was short lived, as the vast numbers of prospectors quickly depleated the gold reserves.

Alvinus Wood and William Stevens, gold miners in Oro City, discovered that "all that black stuff" in the sand that seperated from their gold search was actually silver bearing lead ore and recognized it's worth in 1874. Old gold claims were quickly bought up and the "Silver Boom" had begun.

Champion Mill, on Mount Champion, was a consistent source of gold, silver, galena and pyrite for the smelters in Leadville. Built in the 1890s, Champion Mine and Mill operated until 1919, when it became too expensive to ship the ore to Leadville.

Getting to the mill is a beautiful drive, with small obstacles. To get there, take I-70 to Hwy 119 and Rollinsville. Turn left on F.S. 149 and take the dirt road. At the fork, make a right towards the Rollinsville Workcenter (F.S. 105).

The trail is easy to moderate. Some areas require skillful driving and four-wheel drive. We ventured this trail on July 29, 2009. A beautiful day in the forest quickly turn white-out snow on Mount Champion.

The mill is a fantastic look at the milling equipment of the late 1800s and early 1900s. Cables ran from the Champion Mine, higher on Mount Champion to the mill here. The tram towers still stand. The mill still has it's equipment inside, visitors can look through and see the massive machines that milled the ore.
Year built?: 1890

Is the mill or gin still in operation?: No

What is or was processed here?: Gold, silver, galena, pyrite

Are tours available?: None offered, view from the outside only.

How is or was it powered?: Unknown

Related link to this waymark.: [Web Link]

What is it used as today?: Not listed

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