Extraordinary Chapters in the Annals of “Burrodom”

By Hal Walter The phone call came while I was riding the bus back from Leadville after coaching a cross-country meet there. It was Steve Short. Steve is a physician who lives in Kansas but has a long family history in Westcliffe going back to his childhood. He and wife Whitney have a home in …

Read more

Remembering Curtis Imrie

“Curtis was a gift to all who knew him. Populist to the core, a brilliant, principled person who did everything with a true gusto for life.”

– Linda Brandon Powers, Former Colorado State Senator, former Crested Butte Mayor and City Councillor

“After his flaming near-death wreck on the Interstate a dozen or so years ago, it was all borrowed time. And Curtis used it well. As he lived it. Keeping on. Fighting the environmental battles. Running each year, as one of the country’s premiere burro-racers. Taking on quixotic political campaigns with an unabashedly progressive agenda to help get the word out in the Arkansas watershed that there were candidates who weren’t in the pocket of the party bigwigs … We shared a Haight-Ashbury past. City boys who fell in love with the country. I miss that good man.”

– Art Goodtimes, poet, former San Miguel County Commissioner

Read more

Curtis Imrie: “When in Doubt, Print the Legend”

By Hal Walter

The following may or may not be true. And if it ain’t then it ought to be.”

That is an opening quote from one of Curtis Imrie’s films, The Lost Frontier.

Curtis collapsed and died while preparing to show one of his donkeys at the National Western Stock Show back in January. He was 70 years old and doing what he loved. To borrow from Thoreau, one of Curtis’ favorite authors, here was a man who figuratively “sucked the marrow out of life.”

Read more

Colorado’s Original Adventure Sport

By Hal Walter

It’s July and the Colorado pack-burro racing season will soon be in full swing, with the sport’s Triple Crown taking place right here in Central Colorado in the towns of Fairplay, Leadville and Buena Vista.

I’m always surprised when people haven’t heard of our indigenous sport, recently designated Colorado’s Summer Heritage Sport by the state legislature. Sometimes when I’m out running with my burro and someone seems confused, or asks what I’m doing, I respond: “Oh, so you’re not from Colorado?” Often they actually are, and then I usually explain.

Read more

State Sport?

By Hal Walter

There’s movement ahoof to make pack-burro racing Colorado’s official summer sport. Many readers might be surprised to learn I’m not racing my ass to the capitol to support this effort, though I’m not entirely against it either. I just have mixed feelings.

Why? Well, let’s start with some basics as many people may not even know what pack-burro racing is, something that’s problematic for an activity that seeks official state-sanctioning.

Read more

Pack burro racers start season in Cripple Creek

Brief by Central Staff

Burro Racing – June 2005 – Colorado Central Magazine

Summer may arrive one of these days (there’s certainly been enough wind to bring in a new season), and with it comes pack-burro racing – the only professional sport indigenous to Central Colorado.

The 2005 schedule includes the three Triple Crown races, as well as a Cripple Creek race and tentatively a race near where the Colorado Central Railroad once operated.

Read more

BV’s Barb Dolan wins another triple crown

Brief by Central Staff

Burro Racing – September 1999 – Colorado Central Magazine

BV’s Barb Dolan wins another Triple Crown in ’99 burro races

Barb Dolan of Buena Vista continued her winning ways with another triple crown in this year’s pack-burro racing season. To gain that trophy, she and her burro, Rocky Top Chug, came in first in the women’s division of the Fairplay, Leadville, and Buena Vista burro races.

Read more

Barb Dolan wins BV Triple Crown race

Brief by Hal Walter

Burro racing – September 1996 – Colorado Central Magazine

Dolan wins pack-burro Triple Crown Race

Twin Lakes resident Barbara Dolan and her burro Sailor hitched down Pack-Burro Racing’s Triple Crown this summer as the top female competitor at races in Fairplay and Leadville, and the overall winner in the final leg of the series in Buena Vista.

Read more