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Hi-Go or Higho Colorado Ghost town

Photos Mike Sinnwell 8-2013

If it had not been for Robert Hamill I would never have been here. So instead of me doing a write-up about Hi-Go Colorado I am providing an edited version of a well researched write up he has done.  

Higho, Colorado had a US Post Office from June 14, 1889 to January 31, 1900 and April 14, 1900 to August 15, 1930. It originally fell within the boundaries of Larimer County, but on May 5, 1909 Jackson County was created from the western part of Larimer County and the farming community of Higho was included. The location is approximately 12 miles WSW of Walden, CO.  The Post Office was apparently located in a general store/livery stable on County Road 20 and at several farm houses during its existence. At the time of establishment and operation, postmasters were political patronage appointments with their income determined by the volume of mail handled and postage sold. The mail is now delivered as a rural route out of Walden, the County Seat of Jackson County and the only incorporated town in the entire county.

Irrigation for farming was provided by contour ditches from higher elevations. Higho (gravity contour irrigation) Ditch, one of many in the area, was used for row crop vegetable farming in this dry area of North Park. It lies between two major mountain systems of the Rockies in north central Colorado that captured virtually all of the rain/snow fall, leaving the valley arid. There is the Park Range to the west, Medicine Bow Range to the east and Rabbit Ears Range to the south. Irrigation stream diversion ditches, like mines, were often given whimsical names or named after the farmer that built or controlled them. Higho School is located at the north side of Jackson County Road 12.

Jackson County was created in 1909 from the western portion of Larimer County by the Colorado legislature as a result of the outcry of the citizens in North Park concerning its isolation and access to the Larimer County Seat in Fort Collins. The only access east to the county seat was a wagon road that was muddy, flooded, washed out or blocked by snow, weeks at a time, depending on the time of year. That route is current day Colorado State Highway 14 across Cameron Pass (Elev. 10,276 ft.). The only access to the west to Steamboat Springs was another wagon road that crossed the Continental Divide at Buffalo Pass (Elev. 10,180 ft.). Today that route is Routt National Forest Road 60, 4WD recommended. To the north is Wyoming and to the south are three more mountain passes crossing the Rabbit Ears Range. Jackson County is isolated!

The farming and ranching community of Higho is best defined as all the area around Delaney Butte. A two generation Coloradan told me it is pronounced 'Hi-o' like the state of Ohio without the first 'O'. I do not know the source of the name itself.

Robert Hamill  Hoover, AL

For the complete article go here  http://roadsidethoughts.com/co/higho-xx-jackson-stories.htm

UPDATED -- 10/30/2014

Hi Mike,

Blame it on me for not updating you on the research.  The correct name was/is Hi-Go.  I have to wonder if my leg was being pulled on my first attempt to get the pronunciation right.  Subsequent contact with other folks, including Andy Murin confirmed "Hi-Go".  If you edit the post (please), you may want to mention the hospitality provided by Jamie Brown, photographer and Director of the North Park Visitors Bureau, and the private tour of the Pioneer Museum in Walden that had the counter of the last Higho post office on display along with an incredible range of items.