Brief by Central Staff
Local lore – October 1999 – Colorado Central Magazine
To become an Eagle Scout, a Boy Scout needs to complete a major project. Cameron Randall of Buena Vista took one on last summer — removing the graffiti from Elephant Rock, a landmark a couple of miles north of Buena Vista near the Midland Tunnels.
He started on August 3, and got a lot of assistance along the way from fellow scouts, church members, and various businesses and public entities. And now there’s a sign on the landmark, explaining a bit of its history.
Elephant Rock is also known as Sphinx Rock (depending on the direction of approach), and was a popular picnic spot for tourists on the Colorado Midland Railroad, which ran through the valley from 1887 until it was abandoned in 1919.
While we’re all for keeping landmarks clean, we should also point out that if graffiti stays there long enough, it acquires historic value — witness Register Rock along the Oregon Trail in Wyoming.