The Crystal Mill: Colorado’s Hidden Gem

Today’s guest article comes from Nick Souvall and features a place I have been pining after for a long time, the Crystal Mill.  It is an abandoned mill just outside Marble, Colorado.  I have seen a handful of amazing images from this location over the years and concluded it is either impossible to take a bad picture there, or it is so hard to get to, only skilled photographers are willing to make the trek.  Given the unique structure, flowing river, tree covered hills and snow-capped peak, I am guessing it is not tough to make a composition here.

Nick shares his thoughts of the Crystal Mill as follows:

“Ever since I first saw a picture of this place, I knew that I had to visit it. The Crystal Mill in Colorado is one of the most photogenic and uniquely beautiful spots in all of Colorado. I’ve been here twice. Once in the summer when the aspens were bright green and the water was raging, and once in the fall when all the leaves are changing. ”

More from Nick: “The mill is about an eight mile drive from Marble, Colorado. To get to the mill you can either drive down a bumpy 4×4 road or hike the eight miles. Both times that I’ve been there I hiked down the road. The drive doesn’t seem too bad, so if you’ve got a vehicle with high clearance you should be all right. That said I prefer to hike since the views along the way are beautiful as well and there are lots of opportunities for pictures, especially in the fall.”

“Once you arrive at the mill, you’ll get a beautiful view of the abandoned mill as it sits atop a cliff over the raging Crystal River. It’s surrounded by a beautiful forest of green aspens in the summer or gold in the fall and an impressive waterfall. You can view the mill from a small overlook on the road. Both times I’ve been there I’ve seen people down on the river and I’ve seen many pictures from that angle but I couldn’t figure out how to get down there since part of it was roped off. Nonetheless the view from the road is spectacular and iconic for a reason.”

“From there you can continue down the road a little more to the ghost town of Crystal, Colorado which seems to be pretty cool, but I’ve personally never been. Hopefully one of these times I’ll make it there. All in all, the hike is spectacular and the end result is even better. I would recommend it to anyone in the area to stop here, even if they’re not photographers.”

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