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Denver architecture: Rustic Style

Rustic style architecture is characterized by its natural setting and its use of log and stone for building materials.  Designed to blend in with the natural environment, these structures are usually vacation homes, hunting lodges, dude ranches, or tourist-related facilities.

Traditional building techniques emphasizing hand craftsmanship were often employed in the construction of Rustic structures.  The majority of these structures in Colorado were built after 1905 and are primarily of log construction with stone foundations, battered walls, overhanging roofs, and small pained windows.

What makes a house a Mountain Rustic?

Rustic style cabins differ from Pioneer Log structures which were generally built during initial settlement periods and often exhibited crude construction.  Rustic cabins generally have stone chimneys while Pioneer Log cabins utilized metal flues attached to iron stoves.  Rustic buildings have more commercially manufactured hardware and materials, such as window frames, doors, and interior paneling.  Rustic buildings may also employ hip roofs, a form virtually never found on Pioneer Log structures.

Where to look

According to the National Register of Rustic Architecture first Rustic homes were built on territory of Rocky Mountain National Park, Colorado National Monument and Roosevelt National Forest.