Hayden occupies a spot in the river valley of the Yampa River in a hilly area of western Colorado. It was founded in 1875 and named after Ferdinand Hayden, who explored the area in the 1860s as head of a Geological Survey team. The Yampa River provides water for a beautiful grassland area dotted with trees which surrounds the town. Beyond the valley, the hills are covered in sagebrush and grass that is green in the spring and dries up as summer progresses.
Hayden had a population of 1,634 in 2000 and is at the rather high elevation of 6,434 feet.