“part of the Great Divide”
Cameron Pass, part of the Rocky Mountains in the U.S. state of Colorado, is part of the Great Divide. The Great Divide separates water that flows west into the Pacific Ocean and water that flows north, east, and south into the Arctic and Atlantic Oceans and the Gulf of Mexico. Although there are other continental divides on the North American continent, the Great Divide is the most prominent. It follows the high peaks of the American and Canadian Rocky Mountains, then follows the Sierra Madre Occidental mountains through Mexico. Cameron Pass is a 10,276 ft (3,132 m) elevation mountain pass in the Rocky Mountains in north central Colorado in the United States. The pass is a gap between the south end of the Medicine Bow Mountains and the north end of the Never Summer Mountains. It sits on the border between Jackson County and Larimer County, approximately 3 mi (5 km) north of the boundary of Rocky Mountain National Park. The pass provides the most convenient route between Fort Collins and Walden in North Park, using State Highway 14. The pass was named for Robert Cameron, the founder of the Fort Collins Agricultural Colony in the 1870s. The pass was surveyed several times for railroads, including once by the Union Pacific Railroad as a possible route for a line through the Rockies. No railroad was ever built over the pass however. The pass is located the boundary of the Roosevelt National Forest and the Colorado State Forest State Park. Parking lots on the east and west sides of the pass, as well as at the summit allow access to nearby trails that are popular both for hiking in the summer and cross-country skiing in the winter. The pass receives much snow during the winter months and is prone to avalanches, but it usually remains open all-year round. The pass has a mild approach from the East, and is steep from the West. The challenge of crossing many rivers and the Continental Divide created other severe tests for the emigrants. Summer temperatures, miles of shadeless trail and choking dust compounded to make life decidedly unenjoyable. Though confrontations with Indians were rare, the fear of attack was a constant worry.
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