Florissant Fossil Beds National Monument
Teller County is home to a truly unique piece of Colorado landscape. Around 35 million years ago, this area was home to several active volcanoes as well as an abundance of flora and fauna. The land flourished with primordial forests like the redwoods or sequoias of modern-day Central and Coastal California. These massive trees were hundreds of feet tall and still stand today as some of the largest petrified tree stumps in the world. We can only imagine the sheer size and breathtaking beauty of life that once was. The constant sediment from the ancient lake and the ash from the volcanoes took its toll on the forests, however, and the minerals that leached into the remaining stumps preserved them indefinitely.
Layers of ash and sediment went on to preserve some of the most detailed and well-preserved fossil specimens of what used to live along with the Colorado Front Range land. Mostly invertebrates such as water beetles, dragonflies, spiders, and other invertebrates, not to mention thousands of varieties of plant life, and these “couplets” of paper-thin shales have become a record of the way life was in the Eocene epoch. Though very few fossils of megafauna, mammals, or even reptiles remain, the Florissant area would have been a fisherman’s paradise with all the different types of fish that lived in these lakes millions of years ago.
The lifeforms that thrived are out for display at the Florissant Fossil Beds National Monument. The park is open to visitors who want to learn more about another world, from another time, as well as getting the full experience of what continues to be a majestic and wondrous corner of Colorado. An abundance of wildlife, fossils, scenic vistas, and clean mountain air await!
Today, the fishing is still incredible, and if you aren’t as into geology as you are casting a line into some world-class Rocky Mountain creeks and rivers, then you just might have found your own version of paradise. The ancient trees might only be petrified stumps today, but the area still boasts a wide variety of flora and fauna. Thankfully the volcanoes are now dormant, but that doesn’t mean that you still can’t find a plethora of hot springs creeping out into a river or a secluded mountain pool to rest your weary legs, after an afternoon of hiking.
Located only a few hours from the Colorado Front Range, the Florissant area is just near enough to what city life has to offer and far enough away to enjoy the seclusion of being in the heart of the Rocky Mountains. At night, you can see clear skies riddled with hundreds of millions of stars, seeming so close you could almost reach out and touch them. The area is perfect for any outdoor enthusiast, aspiring paleontologist, or sportsman.
The Home Away From It All
So much of Colorado is dedicated to public lands. Whether it is the Florissant Fossil Beds National Monument or any number of National Forests, State Parks, or BLM land; there are plenty of Colorado properties adjacent or in proximity to public lands. Views are incredible as are the perks of living out in the wilderness of the Rocky Mountains. For retirement, weekend getaways, or making that jump to living off-grid, we have a wide variety of properties that you will love. Contact Colorado Mountain Realty today and check out our listings!