Turquoise Reservoir is an excellent hub for your outdoor adventures, especially fishing and hiking, including the Colorado Trail, and exploring two historical railroad tunnels. Want to make it a really long day? At Basalt, head past Ruedi Reservoir to Highway 82 and return to Leadville by way of Independence Pass.
The Hagerman Tunnel was completed in 1886 and connected Colorado Springs to Aspen. The railroad was the first standard gauge railroad to cross the Continental Divide. Due to high maintenance costs, the Busk-Ivanhoe Tunnel was built at a lower altitude seven years later. It too proved to be impractical and was later bought by mining magnate Albert Carlton. He renamed the tunnel after himself and converted it to automobile use. It served as such between 1924 and 1937. A third tunnel, the Charles H. Boustead Tunnel, was built in the 1960s by the Corps of Engineers to divert water from the Fryingpan Wilderness to the Turquoise Reservoir.