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Parachute, Colorado

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Parachute, Colorado

Town of Parachute, Colorado
Parachute in 2013.
Parachute in 2013.
Location in Garfield County and the State of Colorado
Location in Garfield County and the State of Colorado
Country  United States
State  State of Colorado
County Garfield County[1]
Incorporated 1908-04-01, as the Town of Grand Valley[2]
 • Type Home Rule Municipality[1]
 • Mayor Judy Beasley
 • Total 1.2 sq mi (3.2 km2)
 • Land 1.2 sq mi (3.1 km2)
 • Water 0 sq mi (0.1 km2)
Elevation[3] 5,092 ft (1,552 m)
Population (2008)
 • Total 1,290
 • Density 838.3/sq mi (314.4/km2)
Time zone Mountain (MST) (UTC-7)
 • Summer (DST) MDT (UTC-6)
ZIP codes[4] 81635, 81636 (PO Box)
Area code(s) 970
FIPS code 08-57400
GNIS feature ID 0174253
Website Town of Parachute

The Town of Parachute is a Statutory Town in Garfield County, Colorado, United States. The population was 1,006 at the 2000 census.

The town is the birthplace of Willard Libby, recipient of the 1960 Nobel Prize in Chemistry.


Parachute is located at (39.451732, -108.051530).[5]

According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 1.2 square miles (3.1 km2), of which, 1.2 square miles (3.1 km2) of it is land and 0.1 square miles (0.26 km2) of it (4.07%) is water.


As of the census[6] of 2000, there were 1,006 people, 381 households, and 233 families residing in the town. The population density was 851.2 people per square mile (329.2/km²). There were 415 housing units at an average density of 351.1 per square mile (135.8/km²). The racial makeup of the town was 86.88% White, 0.80% African American, 1.59% Native American, 0.40% Asian, 0.70% Pacific Islander, 5.67% from other races, and 3.98% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 19.78% of the population.

There were 381 households out of which 39.9% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 41.7% were married couples living together, 11.8% had a female householder with no husband present, and 38.8% were non-families. 32.8% of all households were made up of individuals and 10.5% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.64 and the average family size was 3.42.

In the town the population was spread out with 34.2% under the age of 18, 9.1% from 18 to 24, 32.3% from 25 to 44, 15.4% from 45 to 64, and 8.9% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 29 years. For every 100 females there were 100.8 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 103.7 males.

The median income for a household in the town was $31,208, and the median income for a family was $34,423. Males had a median income of $31,118 versus $21,875 for females. The per capita income for the town was $14,114. About 7.7% of families and 12.4% of the population were below the poverty line, including 15.1% of those under age 18 and 22.5% of those age 65 or over.


The town was originally named Parachute, after the one creek that flowed into town from the northwest. According to legend, a member of the Hayden Survey in 1879 noted that the watershed patterns of the Roan Plateau, north of present day Parachute, resembled parachute lines and chose the name “Parachute” for the area. This appearance on a map of several streams converging on the town as do the shroud lines of a parachute combined with the arc of the ridge line above the streams which resembles the canopy of a parachute.

However, according to a June 30, 1910 edition of the local newspaper, however, the town’s name came from the Ute word, “Pahchouc.” It's said by mangling of the word, "pahchouc", which in the Ute's language meant "twins" and referred to a stream that ran between two nearly identical mountains, the town's name became Parachute.

In 1908, the name of the town was changed to Grand Valley to lure travelers on their way to the


climatic region is typified by large seasonal temperature differences, with warm to hot (and often humid) summers and cold (sometimes severely cold) winters. According to the Köppen Climate Classification system, Parachute has a humid continental climate, abbreviated "Dfb" on climate maps.[7]
Climate data for Parachute
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Average high °C (°F) 3
Average low °C (°F) −12
Precipitation mm (inches) 18
Source: Weatherbase [8]

See also


  1. ^ a b "Active Colorado Municipalities".  
  2. ^ "Colorado Municipal Incorporations".  
  3. ^ "US Board on Geographic Names".  
  4. ^ "ZIP Code Lookup" ( 
  5. ^ "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990".  
  6. ^ "American FactFinder".  
  7. ^ Climate Summary for Parachute, Colorado
  8. ^ "". Weatherbase. 2013.  Retrieved on August 7, 2013.

External links

  • Town of Parachute website
    • CDOT map of the Town of Parachute
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