The trail head for this hiking trail begins at the east end of 18th Street. The trail has moderately sloping switchbacks which traverse the side of South Table Mountain near the well-recognized “Castle Rock”. Forty feet from the trail head is an interpretative picture noting the geological formations including the volcanic cap rock that dates back 64 million years. A bit further on is a marker commemorating the trail to Dr. Jack D. Lubahn (1917-1981). At the trail end, just under the cap rock, there is a bench to sit and enjoy the great views of Golden and a diagram map pointing out surrounding sites of interests. Plan about one hour for a round trip trail hike. Be sure take a bottle of water and wear hiking footwear.
In 1965 Jack and his wife, Harriet, and their four children, moved to a newly built house on the corner of 19th Street and Table Drive. A short distance away, Jack found an old, rudimentary steep trail leading up towards Castle Rock. Each morning, starting at 6:30 A.M., he would head out with a pick, shovel, block and tackle and his dog to work on the trail for an hour. Then he would clean up and be at the School of Mines by 8:30 A.M. where, for 20 years, he was an internationally recognized professor in metallurgy and was twice named outstanding teacher at the school. The current trail took six years to finish and was completed in 1971. To build the switchbacks Jack was required to move boulders weighing up to 2 tons using only his block and tackle. The large rock retaining wall on the trail still stands as a tribute to his efforts for all to enjoy.
Brief biography of Jack D. Lubahn
Born in Cleveland in 1917, Jack Lubahn completed his BA and MA, and graduated in 1959 with a Ph.D. in metalurgury from Case School of Applied Sciences (now Case Western Reserve University). Two years later he came to the School of Mines. The family originally lived in a house at 15th Street and Maple which was owned by the school. Mines eventually needed more dorm space and tore down the house, although the front steps still remain. His wife, Harriet, and their two sons and two daughters moved to a new house they build using recycled brick from the old Court House. The bricks were larger than normal size brick and had been made in Golden. The new six-bedroom, three-bath house was on the southeast corner of 19th Street and Table Drive. It was just up from this house that Jack’s project number 1, the South Table Mountain Trail, commenced.
With the kids moving on, Jack and Harriet moved to a townhouse in the Green Mountain area and lived there from 1976 to l981. They wanted to move back to Golden after retiring and live in a house from which they could walk to the places they wanted to go. They planned the house together and it was finished in 1981. Sadly, twelve days before they were to move in, Jack died at the age of 64.
Content contributed by Preston Driggers
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