About Cardinal Townsite
The Cardinal Townsite began in 1870 when Sam Congor discovered silver and gold at the Boulder County Mine. The town was originally platted to hold the County Courthouse. Cardinal thrived through the silver boom of the 1870’s as the red light district for Caribou City, two miles to the west. In the 1890’s, gold sustained the Boulder County Mine, and the Cardinal Mill was built at the turn of the century. The Switzerland Trail of America, a narrow gauge railroad for tourists enjoying the Indian Peaks, stopped at Cardinal Station. During the World Wars, the Cardinal Mill processed tungsten needed for hardening steel.
The Town of Cardinal spent sixty years as a ghost town under private ownership. It has a colorful history which is being preserved through preservation of 195 acres of mining claims as Open Space Park Lands and the restoration of the Cardinal Mill. The Townsite has been divided into five private homesites which sit in the sun beside Coon Track Creek. The Office, The Assay Office, The Mine Superintendent’s house, The Compressor House and The Creekside Boarding House have been remodeled to historic specifications.
The Nederland area boasts some of the Colorado Rockies best recreational opportunities. Just twenty miles west into the mountains from Boulder, and one hour from Denver, the location of Cardinal Townsite offers easy access to Vail, Copper Mountain, and Aspen. The local ski area, Eldora Mountain Resort, has a family oriented ski school, excellent alpine and cross-country trails. You will find many exciting restaurants representing a variety of cultures in the nearby town of Nederland.
In the summertime, enjoy mountain biking, hiking the peaks, fishing, boating and music festivals, all right here in our Nederland area. Cardinal Townsite is located where two creeks come together. The townsite is 9000 feet above sea level, so the temperatures are perfect all summer long. Spring is beautiful in Cardinal, when the trees are green and the snow drifts linger on the north slopes. Fall is famous in the Rockies for it’s bright Colorado aspens. This is a wonderful time to hike in Cardinal, Colorado. Winter offers the opportunity for excellent snowshoeing and cross-country skiing right out the door of the Cardinal Cabins on the old Switzerland Trail.