With the Rocky Mountains cutting directly through the state, Colorado is famous for its mile-high and higher cities tucked amidst the peaks. If you’ve ever wondered which settlements have the highest elevations, this article will outline many of the loftiest inhabited places in the Centennial State.

If you’re pressed for time, here are some quick stats: Leadville tops the list as the highest incorporated city in Colorado at over 10,000 feet, while numerous small towns and census-designated places climb well above 8,000 feet.

Cities Above 10,000 Feet

Colorado is famous for its breathtaking mountain ranges and high elevation cities. Among these cities, Leadville stands out as one of the highest settlements in the Centennial State. Located at an impressive elevation of 10,152 feet, Leadville offers residents and visitors a unique experience that is unlike any other city in Colorado.

Leadville – 10,152 feet

Leadville, known as the “Two-Mile-High City,” holds the distinction of being the highest incorporated city in Colorado. Nestled in the heart of the Rocky Mountains, Leadville’s high elevation provides stunning panoramic views and a sense of tranquility that can be hard to find elsewhere.

Visitors to Leadville can explore its rich mining history, enjoy outdoor activities like hiking and biking, and even participate in the annual Leadville Trail 100, one of the most challenging ultra-marathons in the world.

Leadville’s high elevation also brings with it some unique challenges. The thin air can make physical activities more difficult, as the body requires more oxygen to perform at the same level as it would at lower elevations.

Visitors to Leadville are encouraged to take it easy and allow themselves time to acclimate to the altitude to avoid altitude sickness symptoms such as headaches, nausea, and fatigue.

If you’re looking for a truly unforgettable experience in Colorado, a visit to Leadville and its impressive elevation is a must. Whether you’re a history buff, an outdoor enthusiast, or simply someone who appreciates the beauty of the mountains, Leadville offers something for everyone at 10,152 feet above sea level.

City Elevation
Leadville 10,152 feet

For more information about Leadville and its high elevation, you can visit the official Leadville website.

Cities Between 9,000-10,000 Feet

Alma – 10,078 feet

Alma, located at an impressive elevation of 10,078 feet, is one of the highest settlements in Colorado. Nestled in the heart of the Rocky Mountains, this small town offers breathtaking views of the surrounding peaks.

With its cozy atmosphere and proximity to outdoor activities such as hiking, skiing, and fishing, Alma is a popular destination for nature enthusiasts and adventure seekers. The town boasts a rich history and is known for its charming Victorian architecture.

Visitors can explore the local shops, dine at unique restaurants, and immerse themselves in the beauty of the Colorado wilderness.

Fairplay – 9,953 feet

Fairplay is another Colorado city that sits at a high elevation, reaching 9,953 feet. This picturesque town is located in Park County and is surrounded by stunning mountain ranges. Fairplay is famous for its mining history and is often referred to as the “Gold Medal Trout Fishing Capital of Colorado.”

Outdoor enthusiasts flock to Fairplay to enjoy activities such as hiking, mountain biking, and camping. The town also hosts various events and festivals throughout the year, including the Burro Days celebration, which pays tribute to the area’s mining heritage.

With its small-town charm and beautiful natural surroundings, Fairplay offers a unique experience for visitors.

Silverton – 9,318 feet

Silverton is a historic mining town situated at an elevation of 9,318 feet in southwestern Colorado. Surrounded by towering peaks and nestled in a scenic valley, Silverton is a haven for outdoor enthusiasts and history buffs alike.

The town is known for its well-preserved Victorian architecture and its rich mining heritage. Visitors can explore the narrow-gauge railroad that connects Silverton to Durango, offering breathtaking views of the surrounding mountains.

Silverton also serves as a gateway to the stunning San Juan Mountains, offering opportunities for hiking, skiing, and off-roading. With its unique blend of history and natural beauty, Silverton is a must-visit destination for those seeking an authentic Colorado experience.

Cities Between 8,000-9,000 Feet

Frisco – 9,097 feet

Frisco is a charming town located in Summit County, Colorado. Situated at an elevation of 9,097 feet, Frisco offers breathtaking views of the surrounding mountains and is a popular destination for outdoor enthusiasts.

The town is known for its world-class skiing and snowboarding resorts, making it a haven for winter sports enthusiasts. In addition to its outdoor activities, Frisco is home to a vibrant arts scene, with numerous galleries and studios showcasing the work of local artists.

Visitors to Frisco can enjoy a variety of recreational opportunities, including hiking, biking, fishing, and boating on the nearby Dillon Reservoir.

Estes Park – 7,522 feet

Estes Park is a picturesque mountain town located in Larimer County, Colorado. Nestled in the heart of the Rocky Mountains, Estes Park sits at an elevation of 7,522 feet. The town is most famous for its close proximity to Rocky Mountain National Park, which attracts millions of visitors each year.

Estes Park offers a wide range of outdoor activities, including hiking, camping, wildlife viewing, and rock climbing. The town itself is also worth exploring, with its charming downtown area filled with unique shops, restaurants, and galleries.

Visitors can also take a scenic drive along the famous Trail Ridge Road, which offers stunning views of the surrounding mountains.

Idaho Springs – 7,523 feet

Idaho Springs is a historic mining town located in Clear Creek County, Colorado. Situated at an elevation of 7,523 feet, Idaho Springs is known for its rich mining history and its natural hot springs. The town was founded during the Colorado Gold Rush in the 19th century and is home to a number of well-preserved historic buildings.

Visitors to Idaho Springs can explore the Argo Gold Mine and Mill, which offers guided tours that take you deep underground to learn about the town’s mining past. The hot springs are also a major attraction, providing a relaxing and rejuvenating experience for visitors.

In addition to its historical and natural attractions, Idaho Springs is also a popular destination for outdoor activities such as hiking, fishing, and whitewater rafting.


With dozens of cities and towns at lung-busting elevations of 7,000 feet or higher, Colorado certainly earns its ‘Rocky Mountain High’ reputation. Whether you’re looking to settle at a higher altitude or just passing through on the way to outdoor adventures, keep an eye out for elevation signs as you travel through the Centennial State.

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