Skip to main content
U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government

Shapefiles to accompany Colorado Mineral Belt revisited

October 31, 2017

Although much discussed in the literature, maps showing the detailed outline of the Colorado Mineral Belt are lacking. Lovering and Goddard (1950) show the geology and mines associated with the "Front Range mineral belt" but do not indicate an outline on plates or figures. Tweto and Sims (1963) published the outline of the Colorado mineral belt as page-size illustrations, differing on each. Sims (unpublished data, 2001) attempted to refine the outline of the Colorado Mineral Belt by sketching on a paper copy of the 1:500,000-scale geologic map (Tweto, 1979), but was lacking additional data layers such as Proterozoic structures based on aeromagnetic data, mines and prospects, to query simultaneously. Based on detailed information on the location of the Tertiary intrusions and mineral deposits, and on the control provided by the Proterozoic structures, all superimposed using GIS, a new outline of the Colorado Mineral Belt is proposed. Four different versions of the mineral belt outline are included in this data release: Tweto and Sims, 1963 (district-based and generalized), Sims (unpublished, 2001), and Wilson and Sims (2003).

Lovering, T.S., and Goddard, E.N., 1950, Geology and ore deposits of the front Range Colorado: U.S. Geological Survey Professional Paper 223, accessed July 11, 2017, at

Tweto, Ogden, 1979, Geologic map of Colorado: U.S. Geological Survey, scale 1:500,000.

Tweto, Ogden, and Sims, P.K., 1963, Precambrian ancestry of the Colorado mineral belt: Geological Society of America Bulletin, v. 74, no. 8, p. 991-1014.

Wilson, A.B., and Sims, P.K., 2003, Colorado mineral belt revisited--An analysis of new data: U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 03-046, 4 p., 3 pls., accessed July 11, 2017, at