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This Week in Aspen History

T.J. Flynn standing in the snow by the Highland Bavarian Lodge, circa 1940.
Courtesy Aspen Historical Society

“Technicolor motion pictures of the high country about Aspen, taken during the past few months by T.J. Flynn, will be used by the Missouri Pacific and other railroads running into this state, to boost summer and winter travel to colorful Colorado’s famed Rockies,” announced The Aspen Times on Oct. 26, 1939. “Mr. Flynn ran these pictures last Monday for the Lions Club and other interested persons, and all agreed that they were the most beautiful they had ever seen of this country. Most all the shots of the upper hills were taken when they were decked in their radiant fall colors of red and gold, and for once the movie camera picked up the true beauty of the mountain country. Other scenes were shot from several of the high peaks of the Elk Mountain range. The scene taken from the top Mt. Hayden was the most striking picture ever taken of the high mountain ranges. These films were taken at the express order of the publicity departments of the railroads and will be cut and edited and made into varied length reels which will then be shown to travel agencies and at railway exhibits. In all 15 films will be made from Mr. Flynn’s pictures. The film begins with a party leaving the train at Glenwood Springs and their trip up the Roaring Fork valley to Aspen, and then shows the many different outings which can be enjoyed here. There are shots of pack trips, fishing, camping, hiking, hunting, skiing, and mountain climbing. Included in the picture is a long scene of prospecting in which are featured some of the few remaining ‘old-timers’ of Aspen and Ashcroft. Winter sports scenes taken in the past two seasons will be included in the reels. These action pictures were taken on Richmond Hill, the slopes of Mt. Hayden and on Aspen’s famous Roch Run. The Roch Run scenes were shot during the visit of the German ski team in April, 1938. These winter sports views should do much towards boosting the number of ski fans who visit the nation’s sporting centers each winter.”