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Parachute, Colorado


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Parachute is located at 39°27′6″N 108°3′6″W (39.451732, -108.051530). 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.


Parachute, ColoradoThe name comes from the 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. The town was previously named Grand Valley.

The town was originally named Parachute, after the one creek that flowed into town from the northwest. Parachute Creek was named such when the original surveyors mapped the area. As noted above, the creek has three main branches that converge at a point and a topographical map of the canyon has the appearance of a parachute, but this is several miles northwest of the town. In 1908, the name of the town was changed to Grand Valley to lure travelers on their way to the Grand Valley, which is the Colorado River valley to the southwest known for its fruit production. After the local history "Lest We Forget" was published in the late 1970s (the name was changed in the 1980s), the town voted to return the name Parachute to the town.

Parachute, Colorado was named after Parachute Creek. However the name of the creek came from the Ute Indians in the area. The mouth of the creek was between two mountains that were very similar. The Ute word of twins or same was Pahchouc. The settlers of the area mispronounced the word and the town was thus named Parachute. The story of the name of the town was written in the Grand Valley Newspaper, June 30, 1910. It was also passed down to those who lived in the town.


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