Wallace Park


Wallace Park, 1915

1921 San Juan Map

Mark Roper

1921 San Juan Map
  (Click to enlarge)

Wallace Park Lookout

Old Durango National Forest

Elevation: 10760

Status: Removed

Year Built: 1915

Year Removed: ?

Google Map

Mark Roper investigated Wallace Park and Baldy Mountain Lookouts in 2009 and reported the following:

"The only information found so far on Wallace Park Lookout is the 1915 photo showing it on its side, probably during construction. The name on the photo implies that it was located around Wallace Park (northeast of Missionary Ridge and Baldy Mountain).

"There was a lookout tree identified on the 1908 Ignacio quad that lies on Missionary Ridge between Baldy Mountain and Wallace Park.

"Here are the references to Baldy Mountain Lookout, but during different time periods:
1) The 1921 San Juan map (at right) identifies a lookout on Baldy Mountain. It no longer appears on the 1928 or subsequent maps, and no photos of it have been found.
2) The book, Administering the National Forests of Colorado: An Assessment of the Architectural and Cultural Significance of Historical Administrative Properties, identifies a lookout as Mount Baldy (see table 5) but no date. (This book was published by the U.S. Dept. of the Interior, National Park Service, Midwest Archeological Center, in 1996.)
3) In the San Juan forest history volume, district yearly summaries, there is this reference for the year 1940: 'cutting and peeling timbers for lookout tower on Baldy Mountain to be constructed in 1941.' Unfortunately, there are no photos of this either (if it was even constructed). This lookout does not appear on any of the maps.

"In early 2010, a gentleman from Durango reported that he had known a man who was a descendant of a man responsible for the 1915 construction of the Wallace Park Lookout Tower near the Wallace Park Ranger Station. Apparently, this Forest Service employee had transferred from Idaho and had insisted that the lookout be constructed of metal because that is what they used back in Idaho. This metal tower replaced a wooden tower of some type."

Visit the Former Fire Lookout Site Register entry for the Wallace Park Lookout.