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  • Mount EvansMount Evans Denver, Colorado
    Mount Evans is one of the mountains in the Front Range of the Rocky Mountains in Clear County, Colorado and the closest fourteen to Denver. It has been compared to Pikes Peak, that is 154 feet taller, but it this mount that dominates the Denver skyline and can be seen as far south as Monument Hill, 79 miles away or Boulder, which is north and 44 miles away; while it is 89 miles from Bennett which is east. It was called Mount Rosa or Mount Rosalie, who was the wife of Fitz Hugh Ludlow and later the wife of Albert Bierstadt. He featured her in his painting of Storm in the Rocky Mountains, and Mount Evans is known by locals as the Chicago Peaks Range. Some believe that it was first ascended by Judge Lunt and his friend in 1872, although others say it was Bierstadt in 1863. The state's legislature officially renamed it Mount Evans in 1895, in honor of the second governor of the territory, John Evans. This peak is characteristic of the Front Range peaks that dominate the skyline of the Great Plains, as well as Pikes Peak and nearby Mount Bierstadt. During the early period of the state's tourism, this mount and Denver were in competition with Pikes Peak and Colorado Springs. After a toll road was built to the top of Pikes Peak, the mayor of Denver, Robert Speer, asked for funds to build one as well to the top of Mount Evans, and it started in 1917 and finished in 1927. As of 2009, the Mount Evans Scenic Byway that led to the top, was the highest paved road in the country. The byway has made the summit so accessible to all types of tourists and mountaineers, that even though Denver is 50 miles away, it brings many of its residents here for the pure joy and beauty of the spectacular views, scenery and numerous recreational venues. There is a partially rebuilt house called Crest House close to the top, and is used as a great observation platform. Mount Evans is host to a yearly bike race called the Mt. Evans Hill Climb, that is 27.4 miles and climbs 6915 feet.

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  • Denver ZooDenver Zoo Denver, Colorado
    The Denver Zoo occupies 80 acres of land in City Park of Denver, Colorado and started in 1896, and was the most popular attraction in the city in 2005. The zoo began when an orphaned American black bear was donated and after building the Bear Mountain, was the first zoo in the country to use naturalistic enclosures to house their animals, rather than cages with bars. It increased on this concept, the Primate Panorama, with gigantic mesh tents and open areas for their monkey and apes; and the Predator Ridge, that contains three separate enclosures that rotate the animals, to overlap scents, which evidently give the area environmental enrichment. Their newest exhibit, the Asian Tropics, is in the process of construction, and it will be separated into five separate areas for rotation of the numerous species that will occupy. The first animal, the black bear, was named Billy Bryan, after the President, and was donated to the mayor Denver, Alexander J. Graham, who began the zoo with this creature. Other animals included native waterfowl at Duck Lake, native prairie dogs and antelope that wandered around the park and a marvelous flock of Chinese pheasants that would eventually populate the eastern plains of the state. Red squirrels came to the zoo's collection in 1905, growing very quickly and overtaking the birds at Duck Lake. Someone decided to shoot the little marauders, but when the public discovered those plans, they naturally protested and as many as could be caught of the pesky critters were taken to the Denver Mountain Parks. By 1906, the zoo had become a motley menagerie and Mayor Robert Speer said that the zoo's prison bars could be taken away in favor of waterfalls, trees, concrete blocks and the like. He then hired the city's landscape architect, Saco R. DeBoer, to design plans for this reconstruction and put Victor Borcherdt in charge of the zoo as director. Saco designed the Bear Mountain enclosure that opened in 1918 and it is 43 feet tall and 185 feet long. It is constructed of dyed and textured concrete forms cast from Dinosaur Mountain, outside of Morrison, Colorado. They hid the moats to replace the cage bars, then added an artificial stream to make it look more natural. The enclosure's south end is a replica of Mesa Verde National Park, and had held monkeys, but since they escaped often, decided to put sea lions there. Presently coati live there, with grizzly bears and Asiatic black bears living in the two other areas. The Bear Mountain exhibit made Denver one of the premier zoos in the nation, and Borcherdt was hired by the St. Louis Zoo after they had seen what he'd done.  The zoo contains many species that come from around the world, that include; pachyderms, birds, reptiles, hoofed mammals, carnivorous mammals and fish.

January 11, 2011