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By the 1870s, seekers of gold and silver were headed to the Gore Range as word spread that it contained those precious metals. Mines and railroad tracks appeared, and the Utes were driven from their land, but not before they allegedly set fire to thousands of forested acres and created the barren region today known as the Back Bowls (seems the palefaces had the last laugh - the Back Bowls are today the centerpiece of Vail's ski industry).
Gore Valley's mineral resources were soon mined out, and the valley was left to sheep ranchers until 1939, at which time construction on Highway 6 (running from Denver through Gore Valley) began. The project's engineer Charlie Vail lent his name to Vail Pass and eventually to the Town of Vail as well.