Lookout Mountain Park is approximately twenty miles to the west of downtown Denver and overlooks Golden, Colorado. There are over sixty-five acres of wilderness at the top of Lookout Mountain which is got its name because the Ute Indian tribe used it as a vantage point to "lookout.'' Not only is the mountain the site of Buffalo Bill's burial it is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
A mountain park was proposed as a getaway spot by a group of local residents and businessman during 1889. Lookout Mountain was chosen over Eden Park after some debate. Frederick Law Olmsted who designed New York City's Central Park was the architect chosen to design the park as a naturalist resort. The syndicate acquired the original site of Lookout Mountain Park but there was not much construction because of the 1893 Silver Crash.
The Silver Crash combined with the death of the aging stockholders delayed progress although the park site was eventually purchased by Ress Vidler. Vidler was the businessman that constructed the funicular incline railway leading to the top of the mountain and the other attractions. The park system of the Denver Mountains started to consider the original site of Lookout Mountain Park and with the assistance of Mayor Robert W. Speeder it was eventually acquired. In 1917 the area became the new Lookout Mountain Park. The original park was beside the new one for a short time until it went bankrupt leaving the new park to be Lookout Mountain Park.
A summer home for his family was built by Charles Boettcher during 1917. One hundred and ten acres was donated to Jefferson County by Charliene Breeden (his granddaughter) during 1968. A room in the Boettcher Mansion and then the garage of the mansion were used to house the Lookout Mountain Nature Center. The servant's house was used starting in 1990 and the LMNC was opened during 1997. The design uses recycled materials such as soda bottles, sawdust and the boxcars of trains to build the facility.
The Lookout Mountain Park offices are open Monday through Friday from 7:30am until 5:30pm. There are a number of services offered at the Nature Center of Lookout Mountain Park that include groups, individuals and even toddlers. There are guided programs to allow visitors to enjoy the Open Space Parks of Jefferson County in addition to interactive exhibits to show the secret's of nature.
The Nature Center is closed on Monday and open Tuesday through Sunday from 10am until 4pm. During the summer which is May 27th until September 3rd the Nature Center is closed on Monday. Tuesday through Friday the center opens at 10am and closes at 4pm. Saturday and Sunday the facility opens at 9am and closes at 5pm. There are no bikes, dogs or horses allowed at the Meadow Loop or Forest Loop trails in the Preserve. Visitors may not collect any of the natural resources at the park.
Anyone that would like to get a closer look at nature and a view of the surrounding area should make it a point to visit the Lookout Mountain Park in Golden, Colorado.