When I named one my of my recent large abstract paintings "Denver Trail" I had in mind referencing a portion of the historic Pony Express route through the Rocky Mountains.
With gold rushes, Mormon settlement and the Oregon Trail migration, tens of thousands of people were moving west during the 1840s and 1850s. Of these, a large portion came through the Platte River Valley, running most of the length of Nebraska.
At the western end of Nebraska, a branch of the river veers south - this is the South Platte River, the route that Pony Express riders used to get to Denver.
Surprisingly, despite its romantic lore and legendary riders such as Buffalo Bill Cody, the Pony Express only operated for about 19 months. It's story was cut short by a combination of the invention of the telegraph, the outbreak of the Civil War and the failure to secure an exclusive government contract.
To this day, the "South Platte River Trail" is one of Denver's favorite outdoor recreational attractions - an 18-mile urban green corridor, bike and walking path.
At a certain point I realized that the Denver Route was technically maybe a spur line of the Pony Express, not on the main route through the Rockies, but regardless I still find that the painting evokes a western, Rocky Mountain flavor.
"Denver Trail" is one of several paintings I have done that reference either the Pony Express, the Rockies, any of several western canyons, and other similar themes, including my "Art Whitewater" collection. Some of these paintings include "Spirit Speaks", "Whitewater Moment" (sold), "Sky High Valley" (sold), "Arizona Architect" (sold) and many others.