PIT STOP 2 FOR 2015
The town of Calhan was founded in 1888 as a water station for the Rock Island Rail Line. The population of Calhan hovers around 800 people. Calhan sits on the southern side of a large depression that, thousands of years ago, was the bottom of a shallow inland sea! Evidence of this can be seen at the amazing Paint Mines Park, about a mile to the south of the town. The third leg of the IDR200 will be going through this area and is truly well worth visiting.
The Paint Mines Park has 4 miles of trails that rise over 500 feet in elevation. It covers 750 acres containing grassland and geological formations of hoodoos, colored clay, and sandstone-capped spires. Archaeological evidence such as arrow heads and stone dart tips have been found in the park. There is ample evidence in the geological findings that there were prehistoric and historic occupation by Native American peoples as early as 9,000 years ago!