Alfred Packer, Colorado Cannibal

Alfred Packer – Colorado Cannibal

Then There Was Only OneGrowing up in Denver, Colorado at the foot of the Rocky Mountains during the 60’s and 70’s you at some time you would hear the tale of “Alfred G. Packer” Colorado cannibal. It is a chilling tale of wilderness survival of some gold prospectors that were lost in the rugged mountain wilderness of the Rocky Mountains near Lake City, Colorado. Six men entered the remote winter wilderness and only one would survive to walk out several months later. Alfred was buried in the Littleton Cemetery not far from my childhood home. This is my version of the tale of the Colorado Cannibal.

San Juan Mountains, Colorado

Alfred Packer
Bitter cold winter, Colorado 1874,
Alfred Packer, became campfire lore.

Breckenridge gold fields they had in mind,
Alfred, five others, yellow dust had blind.

On the Gunnison River, Indian Chief Ouray,
Feared Packer’s crew would become winters prey.

“Never to fear”,  Alfred Packer was heard to say,
Headed into the San Juan’s on a freezing winter day.

On a mountain Plateau, snowbound they became,
Not gold, but survival now was the ultimate game.

Flesh freezing winter cold, became more intense,
Out of food and provisions – prolonged the suspense.

Now only one man knows the truth of the tale,
Packer – the lone survivor – lived the wilderness trail.

Out of the winter perdition, not much out of sort,
Five others lives and dreams had fallen deadly short.

Now how did Packer – one man survive the winter Hell?
People of Lake City, Colorado did not believe his tale.

During a winter struggle with no provisions or food,
That Alfred Packer lived – looked healthy and renewed.

Widely believed with hatchet their heads he did split,
And ate the other five – flesh cooked on a campfire spit.

Over a hundred years later, if it is this legend you seek,
Near Lake City, Colorado, is a mountain named – Cannibal Peak.
By Kurt James

Kurt James © 2016
Kurt James novels available on Amazon and some other shady book stores


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Kurt James

Kurt James was born and raised in the foothills of the Colorado Rocky Mountains. With family roots in western Kansas and having lived in South Dakota for 20 years Kurt naturally had become an old western and nature enthusiast. Over the years Kurt has become one of Colorado’s prominent nature photographer’s through his brand name of Midnight Wind Photography. His poetry has been featured in the Denver Post, PM Magazine and on 9NEWS in Denver, Colorado. Kurt is also a feature writer for HubPages and Creative Exiles with the article’s focused on Colorado history, ghost towns, outlaws, and poetry. Inspired at a young age by writers such as Jack London, Louis L’Amour and Max Brand have formed Kurt’s natural ability as a storyteller. Kurt has published 7 novels all based in and around the Colorado Rocky Mountains. Using the Midnight Wind Publishing brand Kurt has also released a poetry collection called the wandering man collection - Poetry and Thoughts of a Wandering Man - (Uniquely Colorado edition) and now this collection - Poetry and Reflections of a Wandering Man (Random Thoughts edition). Kurt has also published 3 historical reference books, and one humor book. All are available in print or download on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Goodreads and other fine bookstores. And a few shady bookstores as well. Kurt is working on his 9th Colorado adventure tale novel “Rocky Mountain Moonshiner”.

14 thoughts on “Alfred Packer, Colorado Cannibal

    • December 10, 2016 at 4:32 AM

      As you can tell I love Colorado history….lol…..

  • December 10, 2016 at 4:32 AM

    Thanks a lot Tony….

  • December 10, 2016 at 9:01 AM

    Cool tale Kurt. Well written and nicely rhymed. Much enjoyed~Paul

    • December 10, 2016 at 12:25 PM

      Rasma, in this case chills are good….lol thanks for stopping by.

  • December 10, 2016 at 2:36 PM

    I do hope this version of story is not true..but you have written this so well Kurt..thank you for sharing..

    • December 10, 2016 at 2:59 PM

      Very much true and well documented. In my home state this is a much talked about tale. Thanks for stopping by Anjana

  • December 11, 2016 at 8:41 PM

    Hmm…I know I read this and commented, Kurt, but it hasn’t shown up. I greatly enjoyed this rather morbid tale/poem. Good job.

    • December 12, 2016 at 7:27 AM

      It is a tad morbid for sure, but a true telling….truth stranger than fiction – imagine that…lol.. Thanks John

  • January 28, 2017 at 12:57 PM

    You know I love your stuff, love our state and all it’s stories.


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