In our latest installment of Western Skies, we set out across Colorado to explore our backyard with the hope of discovering that which defines the unique identity of our state. If you missed yesterday’s broadcast of Western Skies, or if you haven’t had a chance to view the slide shows that accompany the stories, we’ve presented them here. Also, over the next few days, we’ll be presenting segments of the road trip Noel Black and I took throughout Southern Colorado, complete with hundreds of photographs and a video or two.

“The Dry:” African American Homesteaders in the Arkansas River Valley

Despite the fertility of the Arkansas River Valley, not every seed will grow. Such was the case with the African-American homesteaders who settled “The Dry,” which was abandoned due to irrigation issues. KRCC’s Kate Jonuska reports on a recent archeological dig that is attempting to bring The Dry’s history back into the light.

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Caving in Colorado

Most people probably don’t think of Colorado as a major “cave” state…but with over 1000 natural caves, Colorado is a caving paradise. Last month, the National Speleological Society held their annual convention close to Glenwood Caverns, in Glenwood Springs, and cave conservation was a major focus. From Glenwood Caverns, Shelley Schlender reports.

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The “Manassa Mauler”

The small town of Manassa sits south of Alamosa along Highway 142. Manassa is surrounded by farms and ranches, but in town is a museum dedicated to the Manassa Mauler. One-time heavyweight boxing champion Jack Dempsey was born there, and KRCC’s Daniel Edwards made the trip to Dempsey’s birthplace to find out a little more about the man’s life and legacy.

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The Museum of Colorado Prisons

Canon City is well known for playing a role in the state’s prison system. With one-third of the Department of Corrections public facilities, including the first, it makes sense then that the town is also home to the Museum of Colorado Prisons. KRCC’s Andrea Chalfin visited the museum, and has this report.

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Mission: Wolf

Up in the hills southeast of Westcliffe is a place called Mission: Wolf. Three dozen wolves and wolf-dog mixes live at this remote sanctuary, rescued from death, when their previous owners could no longer care for them. KRCC’s Shanna Lewis brings us this story about the wolf sanctuary that’s also become a refuge for humans.

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One Response to Uniquely Colorado

  1. Mary H says:

    I hope the archeologists in The Dry don’t forget to look for the arts & crafts of the people who were there. So much is lost from other communities who have been through hardship and migration.

    I am glad to hear they are protecting our bats!

    Funny article on the wolves… Do they want help or not?

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