From Cripple Creek we headed a bit south to Victor, CO, which also took part in the late 1800’s gold mine prosperity. Despite the fact that today the town has within its borders one of the largest open pit gold mines in the world, it has not fared as well as Cripple Creek. As you drive into town, you can feel a sort of depression and fatalistic feeling about the place. The buildings are all in need of repair or demolition and there is little to encourage a lengthy visit. After the shaft mines closed, the town apparently could not find a new commerce activity and seems to be just barely hanging on. We spent some time talking to the owner of the antique store in what used to be the town movie theater. She indicated that the town has been in its current condition for as long as she can remember. She finds it depressing and spends half her time in Denver.
We did find one gem at an old fashioned general store, where the owners hand make an assortment of brooms on the premises and they said that they ship them all over the US and around the world. We had a nice visit with them and purchased a broom we had autographed by them as a house warming gift for our daughter Katie.
We will next visit some of the exhibits from the heyday of the shaft gold mines. We are told that we can enter the current open pit mine to an overlook with more exhibits and a view of the current operations.