View of Sangre de Cristo Range from Moffat
Moffat and the San Luis Valley
Moffat is located on Colorado Highway 17 at an altitude of 7500 feet in the middle of the San Luis Valley. Moffat is surrounded by 14,000 foot peaks and stunning views. The Sangre de Cristo Range in the east and the San Juan Mountains in the west, enclose this high desert valley in south central Colorado. In this rural little town, the Mirage Trading Company is where locals and travelers gather to drink “the best coffee in the Valley” and share stories and local news.
Great Sand Dunes National Park
, is just 45 minutes down the road. People traveling to the Dunes return to the Mirage year after year to savor the coffee and purchase the local art.
Willow Springs Bed & Breakfast
Old Moffat Church
Old Town Hall
Some History of Moffat
Moffat began in 1890 as a stop on the Denver and Rio Grande narrow gauge railroad. Trains carrying grain, cattle and sheep would stop in Moffat twice a day. Named after David Moffat, the railroad tycoon, the town enjoyed much growth early on, supporting saloons, hotels and shops. Soon there were several thousand people living in Moffat. Cattle drives and livestock sales were a large part of the town’s economy. In 1920, more lambs were shipped from Moffat than anywhere in the United States. Land and water speculation and the development of a full-gauge railroad which followed other routes, led to the decline of Moffat. A population of 120 remained in Moffat in the late 1920’s and about the same number of people live there today. Most are the descendants of the early settlers and ranchers.
Mirage Trading Company next to Post Office
The Interesting History of the Mirage and Post Office Building
The building, which is the Moffat Post Office and also part of the Mirage Trading Company, was built after WWII. The adobe was made from dirt dug from a pit in front of the post office. The pit was made into a pond that children skated on in the winter. The pond was filled in by the construction of Highway 17 around 1950. The frame building that is the Mirage Trading Company was a store on another street in Moffat and moved to its present location in the 1930’s or 1940’s.