Denver’s Little Hive Library

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One of the Rocky Mountain Land Library’s largest book collections is on bees & beekeeping. Over the years the collection has expanded to books on all pollinators, such as mason bees, butterflies, hummingbirds and many others.

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So here’s the idea: with the help of inspired partners, let’s build a simple structure (a hive) to house a small library full of books on bees, beekeeping, honey, pollination and pollinators. Place the library alongside (or in the middle of) a pollinator garden complete with pollinator-friendly plants, mason bee hotels, and a variety of different bee hives. 

Then provide classes and gatherings for learners of all ages!

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Denver’s little hive library will feature hundreds of books like these:

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What do you think? Please let us know!




New Ranch Programs coming soon

Experience Buffalo Peaks Ranch this Summer!

writing the west

Writing the the West is an art history and creative writing adventure led by the creative staff from the American Museum of Western Art and Lighthouse Writers Workshop. Every month at Writing the West, participants learn a little bit about the Museum’s paintings and artists, use engaging writing prompts to respond to the art, sharing and discussing their findings all within a framework of Western themes.
At August’s session Landscape Re-Imagined, instructors from Lighthouse and AMWA will pair paintings from the Museum with the Land Library’s distinct landscape, which includes the Mosquito Range, South Platte River, skyscapes, the Buffalo Peaks Ranch homestead, and other points of interest to inspire your writing.
The workshop fee is $25, plus a $3.16 ticketing fee. More details and directions will follow. Feel free to send any questions to
The American Museum of Western Art – The Anschutz Collection is an art museum in Denver. You will be surprised to see more than cowboys and landscapes on view. The three floors of galleries reveal a range of styles and subject matter, from the historic to the contemporary. AMWA invites you to step back into the American West and allow western art to take you on a journey.
Lighthouse Writers Workshop works to ensure that literature maintains its proper prominence in the culture and that individuals achieve their fullest potential as artists and human beings.

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Tell me the landscape in which you live and I will tell you who you are,” wrote Jose Ortega y Gasset. Whether we climb mountains or stroll through neighborhood parks, we ascribe meaning to the landscapes that surround us, and our personal and communal identities are shaped by the people, place, and history of the places we live. And sometimes we are left wordless and deeply moved in the landscapes that speak to us.
In this daylong class at Buffalo Peaks Ranch, we’ll explore the meaning of landscape in our lives through writing, reading, guided meditation, and exploration of the ranch. Among the questions we’ll consider: How does where I live shape who I am? What about certain places causes a sense of wonder in me? How can I deepen my connection to the places I live and visit?
This class welcomes journalers, meditators, outdoors people, and writers of fiction and nonfiction who wish to better understand the role of landscape in their work. Please bring something to write with. Readings will be emailed in advance of the class.
Emily Sinclair is an essayist and fiction writer based in Golden, Colorado. Her work has been published in numerous journals and has been recognized by Best American Essays and Best of the Net. For more information, please visit Emily’s website.
The workshop fee is $50, plus a $4.67 ticketing fee. More details and directions will follow. Feel free to send any questions to

eileen and sarah

Join artists Sarah Wallace Scott and Eileen Roscina Richardson at the Rocky Mountain Land Library for a day of immersive learning about the local land in an intimate and sensory way. Inspired by Australian Aboriginal songlines, or dreaming tracks, we will explore Buffalo Peaks Ranch by foot, listening to the languages of other animals, and noticing the rhythm of the topography, and the various traits of the area. Can we become attuned to the shifting sounds and gestures of the local earth, and inform our own lives through the life of the land?
Through careful observations and further research utilizing the printed resources of the Rocky Mountain Land Library, we will create stories, songs, poetry and dance that celebrate and describe the land, landmarks, animals, insects, plant life, and other natural phenomena of the area. Our day will conclude with a performance of our creations under the open sky of Buffalo Peaks Ranch.
More about Sarah & Eileen:
Sarah Wallace Scott earned an MFA from Cranbrook Academy of Art in 2009 and a BFA from The Academy of Art University in 2005. Motivated by a desire to maintain an environmentally sustainable practice, she has sought to adapt her materials and art practice to the age of human-made climate change. In her work she strives to learn more about the systems and creatures that inhabit our planet, to promote a greater understanding and appreciation for the interconnectivity between all living things, and the morality of how we choose to live with others. She is an alum of artist residencies at RedLine, Denver and the Frans Masereel Centrum in Belgium. Her work has been exhibited internationally and locally at The Arvada Center, RedLine Denver, the Edinburgh College of Art, The Urban Institute of Contemporary Art Michigan, and the Emmanuel Gallery. Her work is also on permanent display at the University of Denver. She is a founding and current member of Tank Studios, LLC.
Eileen Roscina Richardson is an artist, experimental filmmaker and naturalist from Denver, Colorado. She earned a BFA from Emerson College in Boston, MA and trained at the School of Botanical Art and Illustration in Denver. Through biomimicry and the study of biophilia, her work examines human’s spiritual and social (dis)connection with nature, and seeks to raise questions about realizing a radically different metaphoric mapping of time, space and our place in the world. She has exhibited film internationally, was the 2019 Resident Artist for the National Western Stock Show, and is a current resident at RedLine Contemporary Art Center, Denver.
The workshop fee is $50, plus a $4.67 ticketing fee. More details and directions will follow. Feel free to send any questions to

Buffalo Peaks Ranch, the headwaters home of the Rocky Mountain Land Library

Explore the Rivers & Wetlands at Buffalo Peaks Ranch

Join us at the Headwaters this month!

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This field course examines the chemistry, physical features, and biology of stream ecosystems. Principles of stream ecology will be used to sample the ranch’s local stream ecosystem. Participants will learn how to test the water’s chemistry, evaluate the habitat, and sample stream insects. We will also study the links between a stream and its watershed, floodplain, and riparian zone, and we’ll discuss the impacts we all have on streams.
Prepare to wade in the water and enhance your knowledge of streams!
Ashley Rust is an Aquatic Scientist at DiNatale Water Consultants, and is also a post-doctoral researcher on streams at the Colorado School of Mines.
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At first glance, South Park appears to be a never-ending expanse of shortgrass prairie. But the waters of this high mountain grassland are rich and varied.
We are thrilled to have Denise Culver back this summer to share much of what she has learned from a lifetime exploring wetland plants.
With a special focus on grasses, sedges and rushes, we will amble along the banks of South Park’s streams (including the South Platte River), and explore the ranch’s fen, a very special peatland environment with many globally rare plants.
Denise Culver is a botanist & ecologist with the Colorado Natural Heritage Program. She has been happily mucking across Colorado’s wetlands for over 20 years. Denise is also the co-author of the wonderfully comprehensive Field Guide to Colorado’s Wetland Plants.
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The Middle Fork of the South Platte River at Buffalo Peaks Ranch (last summer). photo by Samuel Bell

Spreading Books Across the Ranch


How do you turn an abandoned historic ranch into a residential library?

Sometime during our long (& still ongoing) planning process we decided that Buffalo Peaks Ranch would house not one, but several libraries spread across the ranch — in various buildings and barns.

The list is not complete, but Buffalo Peaks Ranch will have special libraries dedicated to Natural History, Western & Native American history, poetry & literature, environmental studies, astronomy, mining, railroads, and Public Lands across the world (from National Parks to community gardens).

Plus one very special library that we are really excited about!


In the ranch’s Main House, right through the green screen door to the right, we’ll be setting up the Marie Guiraud Ranching Library — celebrating ranching history & traditions, from the early days to the present, with books on ranching in the American West, and across the globe.

This constantly-growing library is named after Marie Guiraud, who along with her husband Adolph, first established this homestead ranch, back in 1861 along the Middle Fork of Colorado’s South Platte River.

Marie Guiraud

Marie’s life was a remarkable one that we’ll return to again and again. Her story will help us tell the larger story of women in the West.

photo of Marie Guiraud courtesy of Jacquelyn Guiraud Miller & Fred Guiraud


The library has many books on artists & photographers who captured this traditional way of working on the land.



The growing collection includes old ranch histories, ranch memoirs, cowboy songs & poetry.

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plus tales of new ranching traditions.


And yes, this is a Ranch Library dedicated to ranching across the world!

Building Towards our Best Year yet!


The Horse Barn at Buffalo Peaks Ranch, with early morning mist up valley

We find our place in the world through land and stories, and the Rocky Mountain Land Library unites our passion for both.” – Mark Fiege, author of The Republic of Nature: An Environmental History of the United States.

Books are the tools we love the best. They have a way of connecting people across the globe, and through time. Books help us discover and celebrate the beauty of our improbable blue world. And books provide us with the tools we all need to live lighter on the land.

As we reach the midpoint of the year, we’ll be taking this next week to ask for your support. We’ll also be sharing exciting news about the remainder of 2019!

In many ways 2019 has already been a breakthrough year for the Land Library. We’ve established a new inner-city Land Library in Denver’s Globeville neighborhood. Volunteers have spent over 800 hours unpacking books, and getting them ready for both Globeville, and Buffalo Peaks Ranch. We’ve also launched a few classes and workshops, with more to come.


South Park’s Buffalo Peaks Ranch, with Mt. Silverheels in the distance

Up at the headwaters, Buffalo Peaks Ranch has come back to life after a long Colorado winter. We’re looking forward to a summer full of classes, volunteer workdays, and the final renovation of the Cooks House.

The untapped potential of the Rocky Mountain Land Library still inspires us everyday. Please help us make 2019 the turning point in our hopes to create something new along the South Platte River – namely, two place-based libraries designed to encourage discovery, quiet thought, creative pursuits, and active community involvement. For more inspiration, be sure to take a look at the latest book-filled video below!


Feel free to click on our PayPal donation button below, or it you prefer to donate by check, our best address is:

Rocky Mountain Land Library, 2550 W. 39th Avenue, Denver, CO 80211.

Click Here for PayPal.

Recently the Rocky Mountain Land Library received Colorado Preservation Inc‘s 2019 Preservation Edge Award This special honor is designed to recognize projects that do not fit into the standard “mold,” but has the spirit of preservation at its core. CPI also produced this 3-minute film. You’ll see both of our Headwaters to Plains sites: Buffalo Peaks Ranch, and our new urban home in Denver’s Globeville neighborhood. All the interviews were filmed at the Globeville site:

Buffalo Peaks Ranch’s Summer Schedule!

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Buffalo Peaks Ranch photo by Samuel Bell

South Park is starting to green up, and we are excited to start the summer season at Buffalo Peaks Ranch! It should be a stimulating summer, with classes & workshops, Open House tours, volunteer workdays, and at long last, the renovation of the Cooks House!

Over the next two weeks we’ll be announcing the ranch’s complete Summer Schedule. We’ll have more than a dozen classes, including artist & writers workshops, natural history field classes, and our 5th Annual Ranch Book Club.

We have four ranch days that are all ready for registration. Follow the links for each event, for more information!

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Amanda Rea

Le Domaine Perdu: Writing your Lost World with author Amanda Rea, June 22nd

Michael Keyes painting en plein air

Michael Keyes

Oil Painting Plein Air Workshop with artist Michael Keyes, June 29th

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Camille Dungy

Breath of Fresh Air Generative Writing Workshop with author Camille Dungy, July 27th

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Jeff Kanipe

Star Night: The Dark Skies of South Park with Jeff Kanipe, July 27th


Main House, Buffalo Peaks Ranch photo by Larry Glass

Stay tuned for much more on Buffalo Peaks Ranch’s Summer 2019!


Foraging for Ink & Finding a Whole Lot More

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This past Saturday, the Land Library hosted a workshop on making ink from foraged plants and discarded city debris (rusty wire, copper pennies, and the like). We started the day foraging along the South Platte River Trail – which runs alongside the Globeville Land Library’s back door.


Our foraging walk along the river yielded plenty of rusty treasures and new spring growth. We also came across a red-tailed hawk, a hooded Merganser, and Beaver signs galore – including the gnawed down tree in the picture above!


And who doesn’t love trains! Two passed over the trail as we foraged…


Once back at the Globeville Land Library we spread out what we gathered,


And slowly but surely, transformed those bits into vivid shades of Ink!

Everyone also had plenty of time to dive into the Land Library’s books on foraging and dyes, including the remarkable book that inspired this workshop: Jason Logan’s Make Ink: A Forager’s Guide to Natural Inkmaking. (This link will take you to a wonderful film clip, featuring Jason Logan in the urban wilds).

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And thanks for our friends at Walk2Connect for getting the word out about the foraging class, and joining us for the fun!