Visitor's Center at Lathrop
The Visitor's Center has park passes, camping permits, hunting and fishing licenses, boat/ATV/snowmobile registrations, bagged ice, firewood, brochures on local attractions, Colorado regulations, and a listing of ranger activities. Maps, books, guides, post cards and other local nature-oriented items are available for purchase at the Center. Materials sold at the park are provided by the Rocky Mountain Nature Association.
The Visitor's Center also has panels that identify the plants in the area and exhibits of the animals common to the park on display.
Click on image for higher resolution, courtesy of Jonathan Kelly
Learn About Our HistoryBe sure to stop at the Visitor's Center to view 12 large murals painted by Paul Busch. Busch was a Disney animator who began working on the murals in 1972 at age 63. The murals depict Colorado history from the era of the Mesa Verde cliff dwellers to the coal strikes of the 1920s. . More specifically, however, the murals depict the history of Walsenburg and its surrounding area. Of particular interest is the spread of agriculture and industry through this area.
Historical Mural Panel 9: History of Plaza de Leones (Walsenburg).Click on Image to enlarge. Image courtesy of Jonathan Kelly
Learn about how the Walsenburg area grew with the gold rush and ensuing railroads, and how sheep and cattle ranching defined the area by the late 1880s. See how Walsenburg then became a major coal producer, only to suffer economically as that industry gave way to oil.