Published: May 18, 2013
Cripple Creek casinos
Casino-style gaming was legalized by voters in 1990, changing the vibe of this historic mining town in a big way. Gaming expanded with a 2008 vote that allowed additional games, higher bets and 24-hour operation. There are 14 casinos here that offer slot machines, poker, blackjack, craps and roulette with a $100 maximum bet. visitcripplecreek.com/gaming
Cripple Creek & Victor Gold Mining Co.
Maybe you could strike gold. Owned and managed by South African mining giant AngloGold Ashanti Ltd., this company operates the state's largest gold mine, between Cripple Creek and Victor. The mine conducts two-hour guided tours of the open-pit mine every day but Thursdays between May 26 and Sept. 2. ccvgoldmining.com
Arcade Amusements Inc.
If you aren't a big gambler but still want to try your luck, check out this blast from the past in Manitou Springs. You can play Skeeball or "race" in a derby where your horse gallops based on how well you roll a little ball. If you play it once, you'll want to do it again. While winning doesn't yield more quarters from the machine, you could snag a mug.
Black Hawk and Central City
There are 18 casinos in Black Hawk and eight more in Central City. Black Hawk casinos offer more than twice as many slot machines and table games as those in Cripple Creek, while Central City's casinos have a bit more than half as many gaming devices as Cripple Creek. centralcitycolorado.us/casinos.html and cityofblackhawk.org
Hiking a 14,269-foot peak can pay off in more ways than health and happiness. You might just find a jewel in the process. This mountain in the Sawatch Range is known for its gem deposits, and some of its offerings are found in museums and private collections around the world. So you might just strike it rich by dumb luck. mountantero.com