Murals have been around for centuries and we find them dotting our travel routes. With our weekly photo challenge them of Murals, I set out to discover a few. Fortunately, I was in Grand Junction, CO, visiting my favorite and only sister. I’d never looked for or paid attention if there were murals about her town so we both set out to discover a few. I did enjoy seeing that the city appreciated bringing boring, parking garage walls or roadway underpasses to life.

I find murals that tell a story the most interesting and I recalled one we came across in New Mexico. It stood out that I actually remembered it and decided to pull it out of our traveling archive. It is in such a unique city park with an interesting story. I hope you’ll also find it intriguing.

Let me know in the comments which of the murals we discovered in Grand Junction, CO tickled your fancy and what you though of our archive story and photos.

Grand Junction, CO

There’s a very nice bike trail system in the area and murals exist under several underpasses. My sister and I set out to check them out.

Downtown Grand Junction is extremely pleasant, hip, and inviting. If you ever travel through the area, I recommend doing a downtown walk. There’s something for everyone and lots of eye candy to hold on the streets. Murals existed in a couple of side alleys, they decorated a large parking garage wall, and they even transformed utility boxes into art. Scroll through the images left to right below.

The flying cats mural was somewhat of an odd fit with the other murals. I don’t know what the story or message was, but I picked out my favorite cat!

Another alley walkway wall was actually covered in a rainbow of tiles. Each tile was a set of handprints and I’m sure there’s another story here.

They even had murals on sidewalk utility boxes. Fun way to morph the utilitarian into something fun.

In addition, there’s fun art installations on corners and tucked into places. Here’s just a few fun “non-mural” pics.

Archive: The Story of the Big Ditch

This is a story of a small mining town of Silver City, NV in 1907 and how its Main Street became the Big Ditch. The small settlement in Silver City built their Main Street on both sides of a stream. Why they’d do that, isn’t quite understood, but they did use it as a trash dump which Mother Nature would wash away periodically.

In 1895, with rain fall in town and even greater rainfall in the mountains, the water levels soared and flooded the town. The nice stream in the middle of Main Street turned into a gorge.

The town rebuilt. Main Street was now 35’ below the road and they built a dam to hold back rising waters from the north.

In 1903, even that dam didn’t save the town. The dam held through a few summer storms, but in August, it was overrun and damaged. With 7’ of water sweeping through the town, Main Street was now 55, under sea level!

Eventually, the town rebuilt again, a new dam was put in place. Finally in the 1970s the town pushed to make this ditch a city park. The walls of the gorge gained a mural telling the tale of how Main Street acquired it’s new nickname, “The Big Ditch.” More than 2000 people were involved creating the mural.

The mosaic mural imagery was fantastic and the story of the floods and resulting gorge is all long the top. The park contains a foot path meandering along the creek, trees, and sitting areas.

About the Photo Challenge

I stumbled across a weekly photo challenge and have participated for a few weeks now. Terri, our challenge host, is on vacation this week. However we have a great standin to keep the challenge going, Natalie the Explorer! Enjoy Colourful Laneway Murals by Natalie the Explorer.

Let me know in the comments which of these murals you would tag as your favorite. Do you have a favorite mural that sticks in your mind? Put it in the comments too!