From the Vault: Deep freeze

One b/w photograph of a snowplow. The photo shows a Denver and Rio Grande train standing in the middle of the photo billowing smoke. The Durant Mine Shaft is on the left and a Colorado State 82 highway sign is on the left. There is a lot of snow on Aspen Mountain and buildings.
Kalmes |

“This city and community received its worst blast of cold weather last Friday morning when King Winter gave this area a big ‘bear hug’ to the tune of from 25 to 40 degrees below zero,” announced The Aspen Times on Jan. 28, 1937. “The residents of this community awoke this morning and immediately sensed that it was a bit colder than usual and on looking at their thermometers they immediately became chilled thru and thru, for the readings were much lower than in many former years, in fact some thermometers couldn’t register any lower for the mercury was all cuddled up down in the globes. While the lowest mark registered on the gauge at The Times office was 25 below, Blaine Bray, at Stillwater, reported that his thermometer registered 40 below during the entire night. The Citizens Hospital reported 34 below, and several reports from the west end placed the mercury all the way from 20 below to 37 below. Frozen water systems kept citizens on the jump throughout the past weekend — and the hardware men out of breath — for the continued cold snap has forced the frost into cellars and partitions where the pipes are placed and in a few instances the broken pipes caused young floods before the water could be shut off. Several citizens discussed many ways of getting their cars started and then cussed because none of them would work. Garages did a land office business.” The photograph above shows a Denver and Rio Grande train billowing smoke in Aspen on cold day during the winter of 1936-37.

This photo and more can be found in the Aspen Historical Society archives at