Real Estate and Community Information
Alamosa is a city with about 10,000 residents located in the high desert of south-central Colorado. It is the center of commerce in the San Luis Valley, the highest inter-mountain valley in the world. Alamosa is the home of Adams State University, a school popular with cyclists and other athletes who benefit from training at the 7,500-foot altitude. Alamosa is Spanish for "cottonwood grove."
About 11,000 years ago, the Clovis and Folsom cultures thrived here. In the 16th century, Spain offered settlers land grants. In 1807, Zebulon Pike wrote of the awe he experienced when he first saw the sand dunes. The first permanent settlers arrived in the mid-19th century. In 1870, a gold rush ensued when the precious metal was discovered near Summitville. With the arrival of the railroads, Alamosa would become important to timber, farming and ranching interests.
Things to Do
The Alamosa Family Community Center offers a variety of activities for athletes and the fitness-minded, including basketball courts, yoga classes and a well-equipped fitness center.
At Adams State, visit the Luther E. Bean Museum to view Navajo weavings, Native American pottery, paintings and a bronze sculpture by ASC alum Bill Moyers. Yu'll also see memorabilia from the life of former Colorado Gov. William H. "Billy" Adams.
The nearby Ft. Garland Museum documents the history of the fort, established in 1858 to protect arriving settlers. Kit Carson, who was once the fort commander, is memorialized in a detailed exhibit. Learn about the famous Buffalo Soldiers, and view artifacts from early settlers. Living history performances bring visitors to events scheduled throughout the year.
Just northeast of Alamosa is the Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve. Ever-shifting dunes reach heights of 750 feet at the base of the Sangre De Cristo Mountains. Sand sledding is a popular pastime here, particularly when the surface is slightly moist. The park has the distinction of being the quietest national park in the lower 48 states. The San Luis Valley is home to three sprawling wildlife refuges, including the Alamosa National Wildlife Refuge. Depending upon the season, bird watchers, naturalists and others revel in views of sandhill cranes, herons, swans, falcons, eagles, owls and many other species. The 8,757-acre Blanca Wetlands Recreation Area offers some fine fishing opportunities in some of the 200 ponds that dot the wildlife-rich environs. Visitors enjoy strolling along the boardwalk to view many species of waterfowl.
Just south of the park is a very different natural wonder - a waterfall. Zapata Falls requires a drive up a gravel road, followed by a 10-15 minute hike to a secluded spot. The hike concludes with a little wading across South Zapata Creek. Along the way, you'll enjoy views of the San Luis Valley and the fragrance of pinyon pines and, if you're lucky, flowering cacti. The cold water is most refreshing on a warm day.
The Rio Grande Scenic Railroad operates both diesel and steam locomotives out of Alamosa. Between Alamosa and La Vieta you'll enjoy views of a number of Colorado's 14,000-ft peaks. The historic standard gauge line dates back to the late 1800s. The railroad seats passengers in fully restored dome cars and 1930s-era open-air cars offering bench seating.
Residents that enjoy golf don't have to travel far to play a fine links-style layout. Cattails Golf Course lies along the banks of the Rio Grande River on the north side of town. The crisp, dry air and endless mountain views invigorate players regardless of score. The par-71, 18-hole course stretches to 6,517 yards from the back tees. Mature cottonwoods, undulating greens and contoured bunkers demand precise iron play.
The Rio Grande Scenic Railroad hosts special events throughout the year, including Train to Christmas Town, Jazz on the Tracks and Rails and Ales Brewfest. Alamosa Ice Fest is a January event that features a weekend ice carving competition. In February, the Monte Vista Crane Festival celebrates the annual migration of about 20,000 sandhill cranes and thousands of waterfowl. Bald Eagles that winter in the area delight some lucky visitors.
In August, the Crestone Music Festival attracts out-of-town visitors and locals alike to celebrate poetry, dance and, of course, music. Cole Park hosts Summerfest on the Rio, a festival featuring live music and artist displays. Music ranges from jazz to bluegrass to rock & roll. Over 300 vintage vehicles roll into Alamosa during the Early Iron Festival Car Show at Cole Park.
The Alamosa area features diverse residential real estate offerings, including modern homes in subdivisions, vacation homes and sprawling ranches. To learn more about Alamosa and why people choose to relocate here, please contact Chris Willhelm.