Visits and Tours 2018

Experience nearby nature and Colorado history during an exciting hands-on community opportunity this summer. Dig into the work of Dr. Michele Koons, curator of archaeology, and her team at the archaeological site known as Magic Mountain just outside Golden.


FREE opportunities for you to experience the site range from a one-hour tour about the history of the area and some of the artifacts being unearthed to a more extensive opportunity to get your hands dirty using archaeology tools and techniques.


Magic Mountain is one of the most important archaeological sites on Colorado’s Front Range. The earliest artifacts date back to 5000 BCE, when the site would have served as camping grounds for mobile hunter-gatherer groups.

Although Magic Mountain has been previously explored by archaeologists, this project revives the excavation through a community-based effort that will likely lead to new science and discoveries. You can be a part of uncovering and sharing human-environmental history over the last 7,000 years, if not more!



June 20–27 and July 5–14



Sign up at



Tours begin every half hour between 8:30 AM with the last tour starting at 2:30 PM. Tours last approximately one hour and thirty minutes. 



Each tour will be comprised of part history, part hands on! Over the course of the one and a half hour tour, you will have the chance to discover the history of the region and artifacts found at the site as well as get your hands dirty in the excavation with the help of professional archaeologists.


While the tours are not physically strenuous please plan accordingly for walking and standing in the sun. Recommended items to bring with you are listed below.


Gear List

Comfortable walking shoes or hiking boots

Sun hat



Lip balm

Bag/backpack to carry personal water, snacks, sunscreen, etc. along with you on tours

Sweatshirt and rain jacket in case of cooler weather

Water bottles (extra water will be available if needed)


Project Overview

Nestled in the foothills along Lena Gulch in Golden, CO, Magic Mountain is proclaimed to be one of the most important archaeological sites on Colorado’s Front Range.

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Fieldwork 2017

In June 2017, we returned to the site to excavate areas of interest identified in our 2016 geophysical surveys and with our goals of better understanding the Early Ceramic Period.

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One of the major goals of this project is to change this by reviving excavation efforts through citizen science project to learn more about this significant site and publish both popular and scholarly literature.

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