Welcome to Colona, Colorado

Welcome to Colona, Colorado

Learn about the history, the community, businesses, real estate for sale, and houses for rent.

Learn about the history, the community, businesses, real estate for sale, and houses for rent.

Learn about the history, the community, businesses, real estate for sale, and houses for rent.

Where the mountains meet the valley, Colona is a small community located between Montrose, Ridgway and Telluride, Colorado. Many of its historical buildings, residences and landmarks have been renovated and made useful and comfortable again.

Colona is 10 minutes south of Montrose and its amenities – local and national brand shopping, the regional hospital and commercial airport. Montrose Regional Airport is currently the largest volume airport in Western Colorado – ranking above Grand Junction and Durango. More than 90% of Telluride-bound air traffic is served via this airport. At the intersection of State Highway 550 and County Road 1 in Ouray County, this busy crossing serves over 3.5 million vehicles yearly.

Room to move. This is a land of wide open spaces, sunshine and so much recreation; one half of Ouray County is in public lands. And, the total county population including Ridgway, Ouray and Colona is just 5,000.

Recreational opportunities to the south include a short 10 minute drive to the Ridgway State Park & Reservoir, 15 minutes to Ridgway and it’s restaurants, hiking & mountain bike trails. Drive 15 minutes further to the City of Ouray and 45 minutes to Telluride. At an elevation of 6340’ Colona’s temperatures are typically a few degrees cooler than Montrose, elev. 5900’ and several degrees warmer than Ridgway, elev. 6985′, and Telluride, elev. 8750′. For comparison, Boulder’s elevation is 5320’ and Santa Fe is 7200’.

The surrounding area was settled and homesteaded in the 1880’s. Colona was established after the The Los Pinos Agency was set up near the junction of the Navajo Trail (County Road 1) and the Uncompahgre Valley Trail (Highway 550). This is still a country setting, surrounded by farms, ridges, mountains and the Uncompahgre River. Fiber optic internet service, San Miguel Power electric service, Tri-County water and natural gas are available to residents. Schools, K-12 are available in Ridgway and Montrose with school bus service from both locations to Colona.

Then & Now

The town of Colona holds so much history.
Brush up on your knowledge about the buildings in Colona and learn how they transformed into what they are today.

County Line Roadhouse

This building, at the corner of Hotchkiss Avenue (CR1) and Highway 550, was built in the 1980’s by Jim Guyton for his Texas style restaurant “Jim’s BBQ”. Jim later sold this property and then moved back to the Fredericksburg, Texas area. He started his first BBQ in the small building across Hotchkiss Avenue that had been built for the Pit Stop Restaurant in the mid 1970’s.

Major renovations to the Roadhouse building were done between 2008 and 2010. This building is currently for sale.

La Zona Colona Coffee

This property has been recently purchased by Ladybird Bakery-Coffee and is now open.

On the corner of Highway 550 and Mainstreet, this was the site of the first railroad stop in Ouray County. The current building has housed several business through the years including the Pit Stop Restaurant in the 1970’s then Jim’s BBQ (before it moved to the log building across the street).

This building was renovated in 2017 and became home to La Zona Colona Coffee & Drive-Thru. Closed under Colorado state edict at the beginning of the Covid epidemic. This business had proved to be a great place as a community gathering space as well as a stop for a caffeine refresher, cold drink or snack between Montrose, Ridgway and Telluride.

The Stockyards

Located at 38 Sneffels Street. In 1917 it became the home of the Gibson–Faw Lumber & Mercantile. Deeded by a Faw descendant to Christian Science of Colona in 1924. Later purchased by Callaway’s Packing Inc, 1956.

The Stockyards were mucked out, repaired and repurposed into a community event space covered stage for live music, including BBQ grill and smoker. Its chicken coup is still intact and produced eggs for many years.


  • Covered Stage + Dance Floor
  • Indoor/Outdoor Seating Area
  • Large BBQ Smoker
  • Bar Area
  • Tables & Chairs
  • Plenty of Parking

J.R. Frank Mercantile Store

At the corner of Hotchkiss Avenue and Sneffels Street, this store was built and operated by J.R. Frank, 1925-1955. The store housed the post office. After J.R. Frank died, the property became the new home for Callaway Packing Company in 1956, employing 20 workers. Calloway’s sold the property in 1975.

The building is currently under restoration.

Once complete, this space will be available for commercial, office and retail use.

Colona Community Church

Now on the corner of Sneffels St. and Thatcher Ave, it was built as a Methodist Episcopal church in 1887 in Ouray. It was moved by horse drawn wagon to Colona in 1912 and placed on property donated by Preston Hotchkiss. The church bell was donated from the Denver City Hall, and later “went missing “in the 1960s.

Sunday services are at 10:30am with Pastor Alan Brock. They also have bible studies.

The Colona Hall & Post Office

This original 2 story building 0n Sneffels Street was built in the late 1800’s. The first floor was limestone and the second story was Delta brick. At one time it housed the post office and had several commercial uses. The second story was for residential apartments.

From the 1950’s until the 70’s the building was used by Callaway’s Packing Company for their operations. The one story building with the parapet wall on south side was added in the early 1960’s.

The entire building has been renovated.

Colona School & Grange

On Whinnerah Avenue, this large 2 story stucco building was built 1916. It was the second Colona school. After the school closed down in 1948, it was deeded to the Grange in 1953. The school has been used for Grange meetings since the school opened. In 2000, the building was designated as a Ouray County Historic Site, then a Colorado State Historic Site. Colorado Preservation Inc. named the Colona School and Grange as one of Colorado’s Most Threatened and Endangered Places in 2006.

Since it was built, there have been no significant changes to the interior or exterior other than restorations. It is the only surviving grange in the Uncompaghre Valley.

Johnson Boarding House

At 46 Hotchkiss Avenue, it was built by Charlie & Etta Johnson as a boarding house for the school’s teachers.

It is now a 3 story private residence.

I.O.O.F. Hall

This 2 story brick building was located on the south side of Hotchkiss Ave., west of Sneffels St. The brick work was done by Joseph Knifer. It also housed the post office, grocery and general store and a pool hall. Destroyed by fire in 1966.

A Small Town with a Rich History


-Mexican-American War: Mexico cedes what is now a large part of the western United States. These lands included Colorado west of the continental divide and became part of the New Mexican Territory ( eastern Colorado was acquired in the Louisiana Purchase – 1803).


-Gold is discovered in Colorado.


-Colorado becomes a Territory.


-First settlers arrive in Colona.


-The Los Pinos Agency, and the Utes, were moved from Los Pinos Creek, in the Gunnison Valley, to one quarter mile north of present town of Colona.
-First use of water from the Uncompahgre river for irrigation with the creation of the “Agency Ditch”.
-First herd of cattle trailed into the Uncompahgre Valley. Cowboys included George Beckwith & Sidney Jocknick.
-Cow Camp set up at the junction of Cow Creek and the Uncompahgre River.


-Colorado statehood.
-George Beckwith dies after a horse accident – buried December 25, 1876 – first grave in Colona Cemetery.
-“Post Office of Uncompahgre” established at Los Pinos Agency.


-Ouray County established.


-Ute uprising at the White River Agency & the killing of Nathan Meeker, Indian Agent 1878-9. Los Pinos Agency Chief Clerk Sherman was involved in obtaining release of the captives.
–James Nelson Smith arrived in Ouray County, at “Uncompahgre Park”, near where Ridgway was later established.


-General Parker (marched with General MacKenzie from Ft. Garland, via Cerro Summit and Black Canyon), US Army, Fourth Calvary, May 1880: “We were near the Uncompahgre Agency…and it was not difficult to see why the Uncompahgre was so much desired by the Whites. It was practically the only piece of land within hundreds of miles available for cultivation, could easily be irrigated, and had an inexhaustible supply of water”.
–First military supply camp established on west bank of the Uncompahgre, 4 miles north of Los Pinos Agency and Colona.


-General Mackenzie, on September 1, 1881, with 1,000 troops, calvary & infantry, “guided” 1,500 Ute men, women & children from near the Los Pinos Agency in Ouray County to Utah, approximately 50 miles west of Rangley, Colorado. This new reservation was at the junction of the Green, White & Duchesne rivers.
–James Garfield was President at this time –he had been a major general in the Civil War (Battle of Shiloh). He died on Sept 19, from an assassin’s shooting on July 2. He had signed the bill to relocate the Utes from Colorado.
–J. Smith moved to a farm just south of Colona on Sept. 2, 1881 – the day after the Utes were moved out of Ouray County.
–This was the Smith family farm until it was sold in 1992.
–Colona and surrounding lands were bought by Preston Hotchkiss, Gerhard Jutten, Richard Collin and several others.


-Montrose (formerly Mt. Rose) petition to incorporate with plat & map.
–New families arrive: Gerard & Wilhelmina Jutten and George & Mary Smith.


-Military supply camp is now declared a Military Post by the President as “Cantonment On the Uncompahgre”.
–Home Stretch ditch decree established.
–Ouray County School Board establishes the “Colona School District No. VII”.


-“Cantonment On The Uncompahgre” renamed Ft. Crawford in honor of Captain Emmett Crawford, who was killed Jan. 18 in a skirmish with Indians while trying to track down Geronimo and other Apaches in Arizona.


-First railroad tracks (narrow gage) & the first railroad stop in Ouray County – at Colona (July 22). D&RG laid its first tracks from Denver to Colorado Springs in 1870.
–Railroad ceased operations in Ouray County in 1952.
–Preston Hotchkiss begins building a bridge across Uncompahgre River near the old Agency.


-April 10: closing of Ft. Crawford.


-Colona Post Office Established.


-Colorado Business Directory states: “Colona, a small settlement and post office in Ouray County- population 40.
–Richard Collin, as published in the Montrose Press, builds a home on his ranch near “Colona”. The newspaper also mentions allegations of hay thefts from loaded railroad cars at the Colona switch.
–P.H. Hotchkiss establishes his stores in Colona and Montrose.


-Richard Whinnerah plats a 10 block town, Colona, for Hotchkiss Bros, including Commerce Building and a Town Hall.


-Colona Community Church is established.


-Colona School opens.

Real Estate for Sale in Colona, CO

Are you looking for real estate for sale in Colona, CO? Ya’ll have come to the right place. There are many opportunities!

County Line Roadhouse

An old-style roadhouse, built and furnished in the style of an early 20th century national park lodge. This roadhouse is located along the Highway 550 corridor – the major route to Ridgway, Ouray and Telluride, and all of the summer music & film festivals, skiing and winter recreation.

The North Farm, LLC

The North Farm, LLC Ranch- 57 acres of great potential, in Ouray County within minutes of Ridgway and Montrose. The property’s lush, irrigated farm ground is watered by the highest priority right in the Uncompahgre watershed and is a fantastic wintering ground for livestock and wildlife alike. With easy access directly off HWY 550, big views, and a central location between Montrose and Ridgway, the parcel is ideal for a custom home or horse facilities. From the ranch front gate, the Ridgway Reservoir, with boating and recreation galore, is a 10 minute drive. Likewise, City Market in Montrose is only 10 minutes to the north. The North Farm, LLC offers the living and beauty of Ouray County with all the amenities of the surrounding area – truly the best of both worlds!

Homes for Rent in Colona, CO

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