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Old 01-21-2013, 08:09 PM
 
Location: Denver, CO
1,627 posts, read 3,709,803 times
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Just north of mile marker 59 (northbound) on I-25 is a very short, dark "mesa" or "hill" or some kind. There's even a small pull-off (which I missed at the time) with a sign presumably describing the object. I was just wondering if anyone knew what it is. There was even a sign preceding it that said something like "Point of Interest", so I figured it would be easy to find online somewhere by just typing "Colorado Points of Interest", but no such luck.

I'm sure it's probably quite mundane, but I'm curious about it's geology anyway.

Thanks!
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Old 01-21-2013, 08:46 PM
 
Location: Fredericksburg, VA
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I believe you are talking about a small volcano that is commonly called "the Orphan." It is located in Huerfano County, which means "orphan." I'm not sure if the county is named after the feature, but I've always sort of presumed this to be the case. Here's a link to the wikipedia stub. If this isn't the feature you're talking about, my apologies.

Huerfano Butte - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
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Old 01-21-2013, 08:53 PM
 
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I know the spot well!

Google in Huerfano- Spanish Peaks. The information on that site differs a tad from wikipedia's site on it. Wiki refers to it as a small volcanic "neck". The Huerfano Spanish Peaks article debates it being a "neck", if you will. In any event, it's a unique formation for sure. Huerfano is Spanish for "orphan." As it kind of sits out there all by its lonesome, it certainly is that all right! The Spanish Peaks, by the way, are the mountains that sit south of Walsenburg, just south of Huerfano Butte. Walsenburg is the county seat of Huerfano County. Walsenburg doesn't get a lot of ink on the Colorado forum. In '82-'83 I worked on a three state pipeline that kicked off straight west of Huerfano Butte off Sheep Mountain and ended up in southeast New Mexico, some of the laborers I worked with lived in "Burg" as they affectionately call it. Nice town, pretty setting but sadly lacking for jobs.

ADDED: Thanks to iknowftbll for the link, there's other info on it when you google in Huerfano Butte as well!

Last edited by DOUBLE H; 01-22-2013 at 07:44 AM.. Reason: correction
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Old 01-21-2013, 11:53 PM
 
Location: Denver, CO
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That is exactly it! Thank you both for the info. Seems to be more interesting a feature than I expected!
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Old 01-22-2013, 11:45 PM
 
Location: Sun City West, Arizona
22,052 posts, read 10,266,157 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DOUBLE H View Post
I know the spot well!

Google in Huerfano- Spanish Peaks. The information on that site differs a tad from wikipedia's site on it. Wiki refers to it as a small volcanic "neck". The Huerfano Spanish Peaks article debates it being a "neck", if you will. In any event, it's a unique formation for sure. Huerfano is Spanish for "orphan." As it kind of sits out there all by its lonesome, it certainly is that all right! The Spanish Peaks, by the way, are the mountains that sit south of Walsenburg, just south of Huerfano Butte. Walsenburg is the county seat of Huerfano County. Walsenburg doesn't get a lot of ink on the Colorado forum. In '82-'83 I worked on a three state pipeline that kicked off straight west of Huerfano Butte off Sheep Mountain and ended up in southeast New Mexico, some of the laborers I worked with lived in "Burg" as they affectionately call it. Nice town, pretty setting but sadly lacking for jobs.
Actually, not so unique. Just over the border of New Mexico is a vast volcanic field that you can see all around Raton, particularly east of Raton.
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Old 01-23-2013, 04:22 AM
 
Location: Fredericksburg, VA
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Quote:
Originally Posted by phetaroi View Post
Actually, not so unique. Just over the border of New Mexico is a vast volcanic field that you can see all around Raton, particularly east of Raton.
That's a cool area. Mt. Capulin is worth the day trip if you have time and are interested in geology. There's a lot of information about the volcano and they made a walking path around the rim, so you can get a little exercise while you're at it! Great views from up there, too.
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Old 01-23-2013, 05:36 AM
 
Location: Everywhere and Nowhere
14,131 posts, read 27,013,351 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by iknowftbll View Post
I believe you are talking about a small volcano that is commonly called "the Orphan." It is located in Huerfano County, which means "orphan." I'm not sure if the county is named after the feature, but I've always sort of presumed this to be the case. Here's a link to the wikipedia stub. If this isn't the feature you're talking about, my apologies.

Huerfano Butte - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Here it is on an 1877 map. Look in the quadrant second to the left of the upper-rightmost.

<title>Collection C 004: Hayden Survey map, 1877, at the Center of Southwest Studies
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Old 01-23-2013, 07:22 AM
 
16,505 posts, read 20,901,804 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by phetaroi View Post
Actually, not so unique. Just over the border of New Mexico is a vast volcanic field that you can see all around Raton, particularly east of Raton.
Yes, Capulin National Monument! I suppose I was thinking due to its small size regarding Huerfano. And I have been to the top of Capulin mountain-paved road, easy drive. Last time i was up there was '83, I understand there are several paved walking trails to some of the volcanic sites. The topography of northeast New Mexico is interesting with those volcanic buttes and then going south, following the Texas-New Mexico border to the Llano Estacado. And that area stretches from Nara Visa (north of Tucumcari) to east of Roswell. Eastern New Mexico is quite different than eastern Colorado.

Last edited by DOUBLE H; 01-23-2013 at 07:41 AM..
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Old 01-23-2013, 08:52 AM
 
Location: Aurora, CO
6,522 posts, read 10,191,303 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DOUBLE H View Post
Yes, Capulin National Monument! I suppose I was thinking due to its small size regarding Huerfano. And I have been to the top of Capulin mountain-paved road, easy drive. Last time i was up there was '83, I understand there are several paved walking trails to some of the volcanic sites. The topography of northeast New Mexico is interesting with those volcanic buttes and then going south, following the Texas-New Mexico border to the Llano Estacado. And that area stretches from Nara Visa (north of Tucumcari) to east of Roswell. Eastern New Mexico is quite different than eastern Colorado.
Also, just down the road southeast of Capulin is Sierra Grande - an extinct shield volcano that rises to almost 9,000 feet.
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Old 01-24-2013, 07:40 PM
 
Location: Sun City West, Arizona
22,052 posts, read 10,266,157 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by iknowftbll View Post
That's a cool area. Mt. Capulin is worth the day trip if you have time and are interested in geology. There's a lot of information about the volcano and they made a walking path around the rim, so you can get a little exercise while you're at it! Great views from up there, too.
Yes, but I my age I (and several others) only made it about a third of the way around the rim. Nevertheless, the best views are from the area close to parking lot, and they are almost "other-worldly". One of the best surprises I've had in my travels in the region.
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