Colorado’s Crystal Mill

A beautiful Crystal Mill near Marble on a summer day. Photo Credit: Adam-Springer (Flickr).

Built in 1892, the Crystal Mill provides a great glimpse into Colorado mining life. As one of the most visually appealing ruins in the state, the mill structure stands tall above Crystal River in Gunnison County, attracting adventurers and photographers alike. While it’s referred to as a mill, the structure is really more of a compressor station that once housed a water-powered air compressor that provided power to machinery and tools.

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Crystal Mill was originally used to provide power to the Sheep Mountain Tunnel but was closed in 1917 when the Sheep Mountain Mine shut down.

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Crystal Mill was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1985 thanks to its lasting beauty and the role it played in Colorado mining.

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If you’re looking to explore the area for yourself, the ghost town of Crystal is accessible from Marble, Colorado on a narrow and bumpy 4×4 road that is roughly 5.5 miles long.

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