Granite is a natural stone that is an igneous rock. It develops naturally on its own terms and is eventually taken and turned into beautiful granite slabs to be used in homes and offices. Typically, granite is a natural white, pink, or gray color. Granite dates way back in history being used for statues, pyramids in Egypt, as well as columns and wall and floor veneers in Egypt. Granite can be found pretty much anywhere, but there are significant places where granite and its formations are prominent. There a few statues, places, and locations to find Granite in Denver!
Find Granite in Denver: Pikes Peak
Now before we get into the specific structures and “artifacts” that we can find granite in Denver, let’s talk about a natural formation of Granite. Pikes Peak is one of the largest summits in the Front Range of the Rocky Mountains. It is located not too far from Downtown Colorado Springs and stands at about 14,115’ in elevation! Pikes Peak is a very popular spot for hiking, sightseeing, and photography during the warm summer months of Colorado. What most people don’t know if that there is a large geologic formation that is colored like red brick, visible from Garden of The Gods. This is one piece of granite in Denver that is unique to see. This formation is also seen in Lost Creek Wilderness and Buffalo Peaks. The natural coloring of reds, pinks, and some grey brings out the natural beauty of Mother Nature!
Find Granite in Denver: Janus Head
Of course, the first thing you are probably thinking is what is a Janus head? Well, a Janus Head is a sculpture that is often seen in the doorways to people’s home. Janus is a two-headed god in which the statue represents. The statue is meant to signify the idea of “two-faced” and new beginnings. Each side of the head is facing different directions. Some people refer it to thinking or having two sides of thought (left and right sides of your brain). The Janus head is made of granite stone and is found in the heart of downtown Denver. It is a very bright white colored stone with a gold core.
Find Granite in Denver: 16th Street Mall
The 16th street mall is a popular stomping ground for shoppers, tourists, and daily business workers. When you are waltzing down 16th street you don’t tend to look at what is beneath your feet as you’re walking. Over 1 million dollars a year is spent on the pavers that line the whole length of 16th street. They withstand a lot of wear and tear from bikers, pedestrians, and the busses that run along with it. Due to all the traffic it sees, the material in which is made of must be able to withstand a lot and be durable. That is another example of prominent uses of granite in Denver! The pavers are in the colors of dark and light gray, and hints of red. The original design inspiration was a diamondback rattlesnake, which you can see if you look down from above. Granite tends to last years and will withhold a lot of probable damage, but after a while and after enough traffic it makes sense that a few may need to be replaced. The mall was originally built in 1982, making it 37 years old. Although it is a beautiful touch of granite in Denver, there have been debates on whether to repair it with a full concrete reconstruction or if the granite should be left. It holds a sense of history, since it has been a part of the 16th street shopping mall since the early ’80s- but will they appreciate it enough to carry it on in years to come?
These are just a select few of the examples of granite in Denver! Granite, being a natural stone, is often in places that we don’t even notice, like the 16th street-pavers. Many people have made the assumption that granite has to be in a statue or building. You’ll also find it in the wild as a formation made naturally by Earth. As you’re walking around and exploring a city, whether it’s here in Denver or somewhere else, look around you and see if you can identify granite in Denver or granite in other historic places!