The town of Mancos is located on US Hwy 160 in Montezuma County in southwestern Colorado. It was founded in 1894 near the site where early Spanish explorers first crossed the Mancos River. I'm guessing the Town now has about 2000 residents, but I may be way off. It's five miles east of the entrance to Mesa Verde National Park, and bills itself as the "Gateway to Mesa Verde". In fact, if you're into ancestral puebloans, Mancos is a great place to set up base camp. Mesa Verde, Ute Mountain Tribal Park, and Canyons of the Ancients National Monument are just minutes away. Mancos has several historic buildings. The Bauer Bank Building, built in 1905, is on the Colorado State Register of Historic Properties, and Mancos High School is on the National Register of Historic Places. I have to mention Western Excelsior, an aspen sawmill located in Mancos. I used to go there periodically to get a pickup load of aspen scraps for free (great firewood). Then they started charging a nominal fee for the wood, but I'm sure it's still a great deal.
Although still pretty much of a ranching and agricultural community, Mancos also has a contemporary culture somewhat quirky, artsy, and new age-ish. There's Zuma Natural Foods, Mancos Valley Distillery (great rum), the Mancos Brewing Company (great beer), Arborena Art Gallery, Mancos Artisans Co-op, and my favorite eatery, the Absolute Bakery and Cafe (great breakfast).
What Colorado town would be complete without a mural or two?
Despite all, still a pretty rural western town (complete with exotic cattle).
This has been a very brief glimpse of Mancos, CO. Hope you enjoyed it.
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