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Tucked away between the azure sky and the gunmetal mountains is Telluride, the colorful mining town–turned–ski resort famous for its celebrity visitors (Oprah Winfrey, Tom Cruise, and Oliver Stone spend time here).

Telluride’s first mines were established in the 1870s, and by the early 1890s the town was booming. The allure of the place was such that Butch Cassidy robbed his first bank here in 1889. These days the savage but beautiful San Juan range attracts mountain people of a different sort—skiers, snowboarders, mountain bikers, and four-wheelers—who attack any incline, up or down, with abandon.

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