Cripple Creek History

Cripple Creek’s history begins with the Native Americans, the Ute tribe, who lived off the land.


Cripple Creek was put on the map by a cowboy named Bob Womack, who for almost 15 years searched the southwest slope of Pikes Peak for gold. In 1890 he finally discovered the precious metal in Poverty Gulch, which later became the town of Cripple Creek.

Thousands of prospectors flocked to the region between 1890 and 1910 and it became the “World’s Greatest Gold Camp.” More than 22,400,000 ounces of gold was extracted from more than 500 mines in the Cripple Creek and Victor region. This amounted to $11.2 billion (in today’s dollars) in gold.

Cripple Creek History

After 1900, the area’s gold production declined, and by the early 1940’s gold production was down to less than one percent of what it once was. By 1990, the town was almost dead with only 600 residents, but in 1991 with legalized gambling, the town was revived. Many of the old town’s historic buildings were refurbished as casinos.

In 1995, an open-pit mining operation was established at what was the site of the former Cresson Mine. Today, that mine annually produces over 250,000 ounces of gold and is the largest mining operation in the continental United States.

The Cripple Creek Historic District is designated as a National Historic Landmark by the National Park Service. Today, visitors to the area can experience the rich Cripple Creek, history through its shops, attractions and museums.


Thursday, Mar 21, 2019
Mostly cloudy starting in the afternoon.
High 54°
Low 30°
Chance of Rain 35%
Wind SE at 6 MPH
Friday, Mar 22, 2019
Light rain in the evening.
High 55°
Low 37°
Chance of Rain 46%
Wind S at 2 MPH
Saturday, Mar 23, 2019
Partly cloudy throughout the day.
High 57°
Low 39°
Chance of Rain 21%
Wind NW at 6 MPH
Sunday, Mar 24, 2019
Partly cloudy throughout the day.
High 56°
Low 36°
Chance of Rain 13%
Wind NW at 2 MPH
Monday, Mar 25, 2019
Partly cloudy starting in the afternoon.
High 58°
Low 39°
Chance of Rain 16%
Wind SW at 3 MPH
Tuesday, Mar 26, 2019
Mostly cloudy throughout the day.
High 67°
Low 35°
Chance of Rain 1%
Wind SW at 5 MPH
Wednesday, Mar 27, 2019
Overcast throughout the day.
High 71°
Low 43°
Chance of Rain 0%
Wind SW at 7 MPH
Thursday, Mar 28, 2019
Windy until evening and partly cloudy starting in the afternoon.
High 62°
Low 40°
Chance of Rain 3%
Wind SW at 11 MPH