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42 Weird, Wacky, and Wild Colorado Facts

By: Spencer McKee

From inventions to unique residents to the downright wacky and wild, here are a few of our favorite fun facts about the state of Colorado. Enjoy!

1. The term “cheeseburger” was originally trademarked by Louis Ballast of Denver’s ‘Humpty Dumpty Drive-In’ in 1935. Photo credit: bhofack2
2. The first license plate was issued in 1908 in Denver, Colorado. Photo Credit: woody1778a (flickr)
Tuff Shed - 4Neus - OutThere Colorado
3. Nederland, Colorado is home to a body that has been frozen cryogenically for decades. It’s the namesake behind their annual “Frozen Dead Guy Days” festival. Photo Credit: 4Neus.
4. Don’t think about tossing some snowballs around in Aspen, Colorado. It’s illegal to throw them at a person or building. Photo Credit: MIKI Yoshihito. (#mikiyoshihito) (flickr)
5. No U.S. President or Vice-President has been born in Colorado. Photo Credit: Christian Collins (flickr)
Picketwire Canyon Dinosaur Tracks - OutThere Colorado
6. Colorado is home to one of the largest preserved sets of dinosaur tracks in the world at Picketwire Canyon. You can find more than 1,300 steps across roughly one quarter (or 0.25 miles) mile.
Breckenridge, Colorado - OutThere Colorado
7. The highest ski lift in North America can be found at Breckenridge Ski Resort, dropping skiers off at a very high 13,000 feet.
8. The first Teddy Bear was invented in Colorado when the maids at The Hotel Colorado in Glenwood Springs crafted it to give to a famous visitor – Theodore Roosevelt. Photo Credit: USFWS:Southeast (flickr)
Flower - Spencer McKee - OutThere Colorado
9. It’s against the law to pick Colorado’s state flower, the Colorado Blue Columbine, on public land or without prior consent of a private landowner. Photo Credit: @mrspenceproductions (Instagram)
10. Ever get your car tire clamped for parking in the wrong place? That device was invented by concert violinist Frank Marugg in 1944 in Denver, Colorado. Photo Credit: ecastro (flickr)
11. Jolly Ranchers were invented by a Colorado resident by the name of Bill Harmsen in 1949. Photo Credit: JeepersMedia (flickr)
Colorado Springs - Pike's Peak - Garden of the Gods - OutThere Colorado
12. Colorado Springs, Colorado is home to more than 300 days of sunshine a year, making it one of the sunniest places in the country.
13. Denver’s Colfax Avenue is the longest continuous street in the United States. Photo Credit: Jeffrey Beall (flickr)
Cliff Palace - Mesa Verde National Park - OutThere Colorado
14. Mesa Verde National Park is one of the richest archaeological sites in the world with more than 4,000 protected areas, many of which originate from 600-1,300 A.D.
15. A prison located in Florence, Colorado called the SuperMax is the highest-security level of federal prison in the country. The long list of inmates includes many international and domestic terrorists, along with double agents. Photo Credit: the enigmatic traveler (flickr)
The Springs Resort and Spa - OutThere Colorado
16. Pagosa Springs is home to the deepest-geothermal hot spring in the world. Granted, it’s so deep that any attempt to get an official number on its depth has failed. We do know that it’s at least 1,002 feet deep. Photo Credit: Pagosa Hot Springs
17. Dove Creek, Colorado in Dolores County is self-proclaimed to be the “pinto bean capital of the world” thanks to the many beans grown in the area. Photo Credit: dominik18s (flickr)
18. Two men set the record for the longest session of billiards ever in Colorado Springs, Colorado. Their final time? 100 hours straight…that’s more than 4 days. Photo Credit: Franck_Michel (flickr)
Pikes Peak Autumn on Bald Mountain Colorado OutThere Colorado
19. Katherine Lee Bates claims that her timeless classic “America the Beautiful” was inspired by a climb up Pikes Peak.
Cog Railway Pikes Peak - OutThere Colorado
20. The Pikes Peak Cog Railway is the highest operating train track in the country, reaching the summit of Pikes Peak at 14,110 feet. Note: The Cog is closed for the 2018 season, possibly forever.
21. In 2006, five men in Colorado set the record for most distance covered on an inflatable craft in 24 hours. Setting off on the Colorado River, they had traveled 194 miles when all was said and done. That’s an average speed of eight miles per hour. Photo Credit: Raftrek Adventure Travel (flickr)
22. Frank J. Wisner invented a treat once called “the Black Cow” in Colorado in 1893. It’s now known as the “root beer float”. Photo Credit: stu_spivack (flickr)
Tomboy Pass - Ghost Town - Rob Lee - OutThere Colorado
23. While Colorado currently has 271 incorporated municipalities, it’s estimated that there was once more than 1,500 ghost towns in the state leftover from the mining era. Today, a little over 600 still remain. Photo Credit: Rob Lee.
Glenwood Hot Springs. Photo Credit: Glenwood Hot Springs - OutThere Colorado.
24. Glenwood Springs, Colorado is home to the world’s largest hot springs pool, found at Glenwood Hot Springs. Photo Credit: Glenwood Hot Springs
Four Corners Rita Quinn Live ROAMING RITA (Flickr)
25. Colorado is home to the Four Corners Monument, the only place where the corners of four states meet…or do they? Recent reports have suggested that the monument is actually located a couple miles away from the official spot.
Photo Credit: Rita Quinn Live ROAMING RITA (Flickr)
Mount Evans - OutThere Colorado
26. The road to the top of Mount Evans is the highest paved route in America. It reaches a height of 14,238 feet!
27. The 13th step of the State Capitol Building in Denver is exactly one mile above sea level, lending the city its nickname of “the Mile High City”. Photo Credit: Ken Lund (flickr)
28. Herding pigs in public in Boulder is illegal. Photo Credit: KSRE Photo (flickr)
Rodeo Emil Kepko
29. Texas might be cowboy central, but many experts agree that the first United States rodeo exhibition was held in 1869 in a town called Deer Trail, Colorado. Photo Credit: Emil Kepko (Flickr).
30. While Buckhorn Exchange in Denver is known best for the many animal heads stuck on its walls (there are 100s), this restaurant was also the first establishment to receive a liquor license following Prohibition.
Photo Credit: eamathe (Flickr)
Royal Gorge - OutThere Colorado
31. The highest suspension bridge in the country can be found in Cañon City above the Royal Gorge. It’s height is 955 feet!
Vail Mountain Skiing - OutThere Colorado
32. In Vail, it’s illegal to hit obstacles while on skis or a snowboard making most accidents a crime! Photo Credit: Vail Mountain Resorts.
Summer in the San Juan Mountains - OutThere Colorado
33. Roughly 75% of all U.S. land over 10,000 feet can be found in Colorado.
34. Some claim that outdoor holiday lights were actually invented by merchants along Denver’s 16th Street Mall during the early 20th-century. Photo Credit: (flickr)
Bishop's Castle - Chris Waits - flickr
35. Bishop Castle near Pueblo is the largest self-built castle in the country, and it’s open for tours.
Photo credit: Chris Waits (flickr)
Stanley Hotel - OutThere Colorado
36. The Stanley Hotel in Estes Park, Colorado was the inspiration behind Stephen King’s infamous horror novel, The Shining. Try not to think of that during your stay.
Stegosaurus - OutThere Colorado
37. The first Stegosaurus fossil was found near Morrison, Colorado in 1876.
Colorado Gators Park - Larry1732 - OutThere Colorado
38. Thanks to a geothermal well on the property that provides consistent warmth, Colorado is able to house one of the world’s largest alligator farms. If you visit, plan ahead and you might be able to try your hand at gator wrestling. Photo Credit: Larry1732.
39. Big fan of the burrito-giant Chipotle? The first one opened in Denver in 1993. Photo Credit: JeepersMedia (flickr)
Alamosa Great Sand Dunes LT OutThere Colorado
40. The tallest sand dunes in the country can be found at the Great Sand Dunes National Park, with the Star Dune reaching the highest height at over 750 feet.
Grand Mesa Overlook. Photo Credit: Stewart M Green - OutThere Colorado.
41. The world’s largest flat-top mountain is Grand Mesa found in Western Colorado.
Photo Credit: Stewart M Green.
42. There was a diamond found at Kelsey Lake mine that was 5.39-carats and sold for $87,000. It’s the 5th largest diamond ever found in the United States.

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