Out to find Teepee and old Cave near Byers Canyon June 2014

On Friday morning June 20th 2014 I met Paul Gilbert for an outing in his old childhood stomping grounds southwest of Hot Sulphur Spring, CO.

Paul had grown up just outside Byers Canyon with his parents and older brother. His father Paul F. Gilbert worked for the Colorado Division of Wildlife in the Hot Sulphur Springs Wildlife Area surrounding their home. Paul said the area was about 2000 acres.

In this photo we were standing near the Indian teepee location looking back at Paul’s childhood home. Note – To see a larger version of each photo just click on it.


The house where Paul grew up is the two story in the background. Now it’s only a office and museum.


Here is what it looks like on the inside today.

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The blue Ranger pickup is mine and as we parked next to the RR tracks Paul told this story. When he was six of seven there was train derailment at this location. A train car or more of pigs traveling somewhere east of Krembling we injured in the train wreck so the locals brought out their shooting irons, dispatched the injured pigs and took them home. Paul though the residents of Hot Sulphur probable ate pork for the next year.

Mia look west along the tracks.                  Looking east as track enter Byers Canyon.

The teepee ring is just up this first rise where the arrow indicates.

Here’s the teepee ring but it’s getting pretty faint. It would have helped if I was about 7’
tall to get a better photo. Paul told me that there had been two but could not been seen.

Looking off to the west. The area where there is no ground cover is now a rifle/piston range for the local law enforcement personnel. Paul’s father told him that the Ute Indians used the flat area to race their horses.

Next we drove just across the road to a camping site on the Colorado to locate the mini cave where Paul and his brother had found some old Indian bones.

Here’s the small limestone cliff where Paul and his brother used to play. The mini cave is the small dark area just above the green vegetation in the lower middle.

Paul’s pointing at the location where he found the bones. His father collected the bones and the last time Paul saw them was in an unlabeled cabinet in the Grand County Library behind the court house. Paul thought he remembered that the site had been excavated some time prior to his bone find. His father told him it was a much older site than the Utes and called them the Basket Makers.


Someone with a marker must have visited the site in the past.

A closer look at the composition of the limestone.


As we are getting back on the road to Hot Sulphur you can see how close we were to the teepee site.

As a reward, we stopped at the Gloryhole Café in Hot Sulphur for a cinnamon roll and coffee. The role was soooo big we shared one. Here’s Paul making sure it was divided equally.  I don’t know about Paul but I found it a wonderful outing for this old codger.

This entry was posted in Byers Canyon, historical, Historical Information, Indian Teepee. Bookmark the permalink.

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