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The eastern third of the state consists of the high plains and piedmont areas. These Tertiary and Cretaceous sedimentary rocks are not particularly mineralogically diverse, but have provided areas for oil production. Running north-south through the central portion of the state are the Rocky Mountains. Gold, silver, base metals were all important mineral products of this area of the state. In the southwestern portion of the state are large volcanic calderas that also have been important mineral producers in the San Juan Mountains. The western portion of the state consists of the plateau country consisting of sedimentary rocks. Mineral production in the southwest area was primarily for uranium and vanadium minerals while potash and oil shale are found in the northwest.
Mining became important with the discovery of gold in 1858.
The Front Range mineral belt is characterized throughout by base-metal ores containing appreciable amounts of silver and gold. Except for the eastward-trending tungsten belt between Nederland and Boulder, the ores in the mineral belt northeast of Idaho Springs have been chiefly valuable for their gold content. To the south,west the ores are chiefly valuable for their base-metal and silver contents, except in part of the Breckenridge and Tiger districts where gold is the most important metal.
Mindat ArticlesColorado Gem and Mineral shows by Larry Maltby
Mineral ListMineral list contains entries from the region specified including sub-localities
830 valid minerals. 74 (TL) - type locality of valid minerals. 2 (FRL) - first recorded locality of unapproved mineral/variety/etc.
Rock Types RecordedEntries shown in red are rocks recorded for this region.
Note: this is a very new system on mindat.org and data is currently VERY limited. Please bear with us while we work towards adding this information!
Rock list contains entries from the region specified including sub-localities
- Igneous rock
- Normal crystalline igneous rock
- Exotic crystalline igneous rock
- Glassy igneous rock
- Volcaniclastic igneous rock and sediment
- ⓘ Pegmatite
- Sedimentary rock and sediment
- ⓘ Metamorphic rock
- Unclassifed rock
- Superficial deposit