‹‹ Colorado Postcards

Walt Whitman at Kenosha Pass

Listen Now
1min 00sec
<p>Hart Van Denburg/CPR News</p>
<p>South Park and Highway 287 from the Colorado Trail on Kenosha Pass May 2018.</p>
Walt Whitman at Kenosha Pass

In 1879, poet Walt Whitman ascended to Kenosha Pass. From exactly ten thousand feet, the view took his breath away.

“Mountainous chains and peaks in every variety of perspective,” Whitman wrote. “Every hue of vista fringe the view, so the whole Western world is, in a sense, but an expansion of these mountains.” A stagecoach driver named Kenosha Pass after his hometown in Wisconsin.

Long before that, Ute hunters regularly crossed the pass for game near present-day Fairplay. Prospectors who swarmed over during the Gold Rush widened the path into a wagon trail. Kenosha Pass became one of the main routes to the mines of South Park and Aspen. And traffic reached its peak with the arrival of a railroad.

Today, you can gaze upon the same expanse that captivated Walt Whitman at Kenosha Pass, one of the most popular and scenic segments of the Colorado Trail.

About Colorado Postcards

Colorado Postcards

Colorado Postcards are snapshots of our colorful state in sound. They give brief insights into our people and places, our flora and fauna, and our past and present, from every corner of Colorado.