In what seems like an annual August visit for me now, I was once again in Leadville, Colorado and its neighboring village, Twin Lakes.
One of the striking differences between Leadville and other Colorado mountain towns is that the ski industry is just a little too far away to reshape it from its original mining heritage look and feel. You won't find condo compounds or chain coffee shops here, which is refreshing.
Leadville is now known for its summer-long series of weekend athletic endurance events, including cycling, running, and burro-racing. Although some residents have voiced opposition to the congestion and crowds that these events bring in, many local businesses make the majority of their revenue during these months and then try to hang on during the off-season. At 10,000 feet in altitude, winters here are tough and visitor traffic slows considerably.
The tiny village of Twin Lakes, mostly populated with vacation cabins and a general store.
I never get tired of the views from Twin Lakes:
Twin Lakes gets an instant population boost on a weekend every August when the Leadville 100 Trail Run uses this area as an aid station, at miles 40 and 60 of the course. Families and supporters of race entrants often set up a tent and chairs, and make a day out of it: