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Smuggler-Union Hydroelectric Power Plant

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1907. 1.8-mile hike or four-wheel drive ride from Pandora Mill (NR)

This unlikely apparition is spectacularly sited atop 365-foot Bridal Veil Falls, the longest waterfall in Colorado. Buckeley Wells, the manager of the Smuggler-Union Mining Company, supposedly chose the site and worked with architects to design a handsome plant with a stone foundation and steeply gabled and dormered frame superstructure that give it a domestic appearance. On the waterfall side, a two-story bay rises abruptly out of the base to a polygonal roof. Although power plants are often eyesores, this one is most photogenic.

Writing Credits

Thomas J. Noel


What's Nearby


Thomas J. Noel, "Smuggler-Union Hydroelectric Power Plant", [Ophir, Colorado], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—,

Print Source

Buildings of Colorado, Thomas J. Noel. New York: Oxford University Press, 1997, 591-591.

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