High Mountains to High Desert (Exit78)
About nine miles south of Estes Park on Colorado 7, we stopped to take pictures of the Chapel on the Rock – officially St. Catherine of Siena Chapel – on the grounds of Saint Malo Retreat Center. The chapel is built on a large piece of granite that the Colorado highway department once planned to dynamite to widen and straighten the adjacent highway. Dedicated in 1936, the chapel was built from local stone hauled in by mule carts.
In November 2011, a fire heavily damaged portions of the St. Malo Retreat Center. The chapel, several hundred feet away was not damaged.
In September 2013, 100-year scale rains caused flooding and mud and rock slides that significantly damaged the natural terrain. Plans to rebuild the property have been placed on indefinite hold.
The Chapel on the Rock was undamaged and remains open.