It all started when...
In 1946, Paul Limbach’s father, Ed, started work for a local beekeeper named John Holzberlein. The main honey buildings were in Grand Valley (now called Parachute).Ed and his wife Genevieve moved into a house on the west end of Grand Valley. It was later torn down for the building of I-70. In 1947, Ed decided that he really liked being a beekeeper and started to purchase his own hives. In the early 50’s, Ed and Genny purchased the property that was to become the home of the Pauline S. Schneegas Wildlife Foundation. The almost 30 acres includes all the buildings necessary to run the Western Colorado Honey Company. In 1976, Ed’s son Paul purchased 1100 beehives from his father and took over the running of the honeybee business. In 1980, Paul and Nanci were married at the property, and in 1984 Nanci started doing Wildlife Rehabilitation from the back yard. Since then, the Pauline S. Schneegas Wildlife Foundation and Western Colorado Honey have used the land together. In 1997, at the age of 14, Derrick Maness began working for Western Colorado Honey. He now works full time helping to take care of the over 3,000 colonies of honeybees. He has his own company, Colorado Mountain Honey, which he operates in conjunction with his work at Western Colorado Honey.
Each colony contains anywhere from 30,000 to 50,000 honeybees. Different flowers make totally different honey flavors. Rain, sun, altitude, and time of year are all major variables that change Colorado’s breathtaking landscape. That’s why Western Colorado Honey sets up their 3,000 colonies in so many different locations around Western Colorado. Honeybees will travel up to 5 miles to locate flowers and will visit up to 100 flowers each flight. That’s why this honey is so amazing. It’s all the varieties of the Colorado flowers that each honeybee visits each flight that create our unique honey flavors.
In 2015, Western Colorado Honey/Colorado Mountain Honey opened a self-service honey shop that carries numerous flavors of honey. It is located at the entrance of 5876 County Road 346, and is open 7 days a week. A percentage of the proceeds from this shop are donated to the Pauline S. Schneegas Wildlife Foundation to help care for Colorado’s wild animals. Honeybees are wild animals, too! For more information, please visit Derrick’s website here.