Marble, Colorado: Historic Yule Quarry and Natural Attractions


Marble, Colorado, a statutory town with a population of just 133 as of the 2020 United States Census, is home to a historic Yule Marble quarry that has supplied stone for iconic American landmarks such as the Lincoln Memorial and the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier.


  • Marble, Colorado, founded in 1899, is historically significant for its Yule Marble quarry.
  • The local economy is driven by the marble industry and tourism.
  • The town boasts unique natural attractions, such as the nearby Crystal Mill.

Geography and Climate of Marble

Located in the remote northern reaches of Gunnison County, Marble sits at an elevation of 7,993 feet (2,436 m). The town’s high altitude and location in the West Elk Mountains contribute to its cool, temperate climate, which attracts outdoor enthusiasts and tourists seeking recreational activities in the stunning natural surroundings.

History and Development

Marble’s history is intrinsically tied to the discovery of the Yule Marble deposit in 1873. The town was incorporated in 1899, and the quarry played a significant role in its development. The marble industry experienced booms and busts over the years, with the quarry closing during World War II and reopening nearly 50 years later.

Economy and Industry

Today, the Yule Marble quarry remains a key economic driver for the town, with the majority of the extracted stone being exported to Italy. Tourism also plays a vital role in the local economy, as visitors come to explore the area’s natural beauty, recreational opportunities, and unique history.

Cultural and Natural Attractions

Marble is home to several famous marble quarries, including the Yule Marble quarry, which has supplied stone for numerous historically significant buildings and monuments. The town’s stunning natural setting offers a variety of recreational activities, such as hiking Marble Peak, fishing in the Crystal River, and exploring the Crystal Mill, one of the most photographed sites in Colorado. The nearby Maroon Bells is a popular hiking area, and Marble Mill Site Park is a great place for a picnic.

Community and Lifestyle

With a population of just 133, Marble fosters a tight-knit community atmosphere. Residents enjoy a peaceful, rural lifestyle surrounded by the beauty of the West Elk Mountains and the Yule Creek Valley. The town has limited community facilities and services, which adds to its charm and rustic character.

Education and Local Governance

Marble Charter School serves the educational needs of the town’s youth. The town operates as a statutory town, with local government playing a role in its development and future planning.

Infrastructure and Accessibility

Accessing Marble can be challenging due to its remote location. The main road leading into town is paved, but many surrounding roads are narrow and unpaved, requiring four-wheel-drive vehicles. The town has essential utilities and services, but its infrastructure remains rustic, in keeping with its historical character.


What are the main attractions in Marble, Colorado?

The main attractions in Marble include the historic Colorado Yule Marble quarry, the Crystal River, the stunning natural beauty of the surrounding West Elk Mountains, and recreational opportunities such as hiking and fishing.

How does the climate in Marble affect its tourism?

Marble’s cool, temperate climate attracts tourists seeking outdoor recreational activities in the summer months. However, the town’s high altitude and remote location can make access challenging during the winter.

What are some key historical events that shaped Marble?

The discovery of the Yule Marble deposit in 1873 and the town’s incorporation in 1899 were pivotal moments in Marble’s history. The closure of the quarry during World War II and its reopening nearly 50 years later also significantly impacted the town.

What industries dominate the Marble economy today?

The Yule Marble quarry and tourism are the primary industries driving Marble’s economy today.

How can one get to Marble, Colorado, and what are the transportation options?

Marble can be accessed by car, but due to its remote location, reaching the town may require navigating narrow, unpaved roads that necessitate four-wheel-drive vehicles. There are no public transportation options available in Marble.

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About the author

Simone Weisman

My deep appreciation for nature and active living strongly aligns with the vibrant outdoor culture of Colorado. My enjoyment of yoga, hiking, and exploring scenic trails provides me with a unique perspective that I bring to This personal passion enriches my ability to connect with and inspire our audience, whether they’re local residents or visitors seeking to explore all that Colorado has to offer.