The Man on the Mountain


Bill Ellis is a kind elderly gentleman. After leaving his home in Texas at a young age, he joined the Forest Service and has enjoyed many summers as a fire lookout in one of the most beautiful places in the world.

Bill’s office, the lookout tower, atop Devil’s Head Peak, in the Arapahoe National Forest.

The cabin in which Bill spends his summers. Once a week he will make the 2 mile hike down to a vehicle, then make the 20+ mile drive to stock up on supplies.

The 160+ steps from the cabin area up to the lookout tower.

The view from the south east side of the lookout tower.

The Hayman Fire torched nearly 150,000 acres just across the valley from Devil’s Head in 2002. Forest fires remain a terrific force of destruction in Colorado. Bill Ellis remains on constant lookout for forest fires. Bill also maintains the tower, educates visitors and shares his stories of his times spent at Devil’s Head.

Story and photos ©Ryan Loughridge, 2010.

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~ by Ryan Loughridge on 2010/09/07.

2 Responses to “The Man on the Mountain”

  1. love this story! beautiful images.

  2. i want his job!!!

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