Colorado - Mount Evans: Mountain Goats
Mountain goats (Oreamnos americanus), also known as the Rocky Mountain Goat, is an even-toed ungulate that inhabits the Rocky Mountains and Cascade Range regions, usually above the timberline in the alpine and subalpine zones. Not native to Colorado, the first goats--approximately eight to fourteen of them--were released in the Mount Evans area in the late 1950s and early 1960s. Today, an estimated 90 to 100 mountain goats roam the Mount Evans cliffs.
Mount Evans is a 14,265-foot mountain in the Front Range region of the Rocky Mountains and the highest peak in a massif known historically as the Chicago Peaks. It is one of 54 fourteeners--mountains with peaks over 14,000 feet in Colorado, and the closet to Denver, standing just 38 miles west. Originally known as Mount Rosa or Mount Rosalie, it was named by Albert Bierstadt for the wife of Fitz Hugh Ludlow, whom he would later marry. Bieerstadt and his guide, William Newton Byers approached the mountain along Chicago Creek in 1863, and spent several days painting sketches from the Chicago Lakes before climbing to the summit. In 1895, the peak was renamed in honor of John Evans, second governor of the Colorado Territory from 1862 to 1865
Mount Evans Scenic Byway, which begins at the junction of Interstate 70 and State Highway 103 near Idaho Springs ontinues on State Highway 5 through the Mount Evans Wilderness ending near the summit of Mount Evans. The byway runs 28-miles, and gains over 7,000 feet of altitude, reaching an altitude of 14,130-feet, making it the highest paved road in North America. The road, built from 1917 to 1927, was set by Frederick Law Olmsted, Jr.