Hailing from Pennsylvania, Tara Tafi moved west to study at Colorado State University, and later, Montana State University, eventually putting down roots in Crested Butte. Today, she works for the state of Colorado, travelling to mines across the western half of the state, developing plans for their reclamation. Colorado is a state born from mining, and Crested Butte is a former coal mining town as well (not a hard rock mining town like Telluride or Aspen, which is why we’ve always been different- even today). So many of the roads and trails that we all hike, bike, and drive on owe their existence to the old mining days. Those mines, however, were largely abandoned and Tara is the one who helps make them safer- which may mean simply closing an open mine shaft, or mitigating acid water drainage. If you want a better understanding of Crested Butte’s history and future, not to mention mines across the Western Slope, give this episode a listen.
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