When a princess white as snow stumbled upon seven small miners, she never imagined the massive impact they would have on the westward expansion of the United States of America. Dig deep for verifiable facts, and seven tiny canaries, with today's deal: for $6, you get admission for two people (up to a $16 value) to the Western Museum of Mining and Industry, a 27-acre indoor and outdoor gold mine of mind nuggets located on North Gate Blvd.
Voted best field trip in 2003, the Western Museum of Mining and Industry—the only museum of its kind in the Western United States—hosts more than 4,000 artifacts that paint the metallic story of the nation's excavational past. With guided tours launching twice a day, guests are welcome to enjoy the grounds, exploring sites such as the stamp mill, which was stringently reproduced in accordance with 19th-century building methods, and the voluminous research library, packed with 5,000 works of mine-minded literature. As you tip your thinking cap to your guide, be sure to extend a high-hoof to the museum mascots Oro and Nugget, who are known to act like a couple of real donkeys in front of visitors, but only because they are legitimately awesome.
While it might not be on everyone's bucket list to hit up the mining museum, it's certainly on the pan list of any gold-minded history fans prospecting for good times. For added enjoyment, swing through on select days for special events ranging from rock fairs to farmers' markets. Pick up a few fresh eats at the market, and spread a red-and-white-checkered blanket in one of the museum's designated picnic areas, or pick up a few facts on the art of rock hounding and shower your significant other in boulders of affection.
Visitors to the Western Museum of Mining and Industry are too busy connecting with the past to write many reviews of their experiences. Four TripAdvisors give it an average of four owl-eyes:
- Especially impressive was the fact that many of the tools (jackhammers, steam engines) were operable, and she and the gentleman gave working demonstrations of mining equipment. I had expected to spend a little over and [sic] hour here, but ended up spending 3. – vinlyn
- There were a number of hands-on exhibits, and our tour guide was very knowledgeable about the history of mining. – A TripAdvisor Member
Western Museum of Mining and Industry
More than 4,000 artifacts. A 27-acre campus and 5,000-volume research library. These numbers just begin to describe the massive collection gathered at Western Museum of Mining and Industry. The institution's staff delve into history as miner's burrow into the ground, finding and preserving the stories and items that fueled the industrial revolution. The standing collection focuses largely on artifacts; visitors can see operating steam engines or pan for gold.
The venue also regularly hosts special presentations in its multipurpose center, featuring events in the past such as The Gold King's Legacy, an exploration of Winfield Scott Stratton's Cripple Creek mining operation. Some events also include the Pikes Peak Gem and Mineral Show, the Reynolds Ranch Harvest Festival, and Haunted Mines. Discussions on topics revolving around the Industrial Revolution and mining are led by appointed speakers to educate visitors.