by Bill Trinen, Trinen Realty Partners
You’ve maybe seen this place along Highway 7 on the drive to Estes Park. As a kid, I had the opportunity to camp and work summers at St. Malo, the mountain retreat that’s part of the Catholic Archdiocese. With 160 pristine acres within view of Longs Peak and its historic chapel on the rock, it is a special place and a cherished part of my past. I owe a lot of my personal character-building and love of the outdoors to my experiences there.
But the property changed drastically when a fire destroyed the majority of the 60,000-square-foot retreat center on Nov. 14, 2011. It’s been closed ever since. In spring of 2013, plans for rebuilding the retreat were finalized.
Then came another major setback when a 5-mile long landslide came down Mount Meeker during the flood of September 2013. The massive debris field settled at the base of Highway 7 and the Chapel on the Rock but not before taking out the historic Pope John Paul II Trail and much of the surrounding landscape, structures, parking lots and roads around the retreat center.
Amazingly, the chapel was unscathed.
I came across this article in the Denver Catholic Register and wanted to share it. Hopefully we’ll be able to share a more updated plan soon.
Mudslide Buries Plans to Rebuild Mountain Retreat Center (Denver Catholic Register, Nov 2014)