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Enter your e-mail address to receive a FREE muscle car download, cool wallpapers, and informative newsletters from OCW and partners. Postcard picture perfect is this scene with a 1952 Chevrolet Styleline Deluxe Bel Air hardtop with colorful brush growing alongside and the Rocky Mountains in the background. Quintana, along with his brothers Chris and Mike, operate the yard, which was originally established by their father, Ernest.
Ernest passed away in 2008, but while working with his sons in the yard as they grew up, he instilled in them a drive to work hard to get ahead, as well as a passion for preserving vintage iron. Equipped with a fully functional boom, this 1957 Chevrolet wrecker appears as if it could restart towing disabled vehicles on a moment’s notice. In addition to maintaining his father’s beloved Imperial, Quintana learned some important lessons on how to successfully operate a yard business through good times and bad. Prior to being parked in the yard, someone with a shotgun used this 1947 Hudson Commodore coupe as target practice. Among the interesting and complete or near-complete cars parked in the south yard were rarities such as a 1960 Chrysler New Yorker station wagon, ’57 Ford Courier sedan delivery, ’57 Dodge Custom Royal Lancer hardtop equipped with a Hemi V-8, ’41 Ford “shorty” school bus, ’68 Dodge Charger, ’56 Mercury Monterey “woodie” station wagon and ’67 AMC Rambler Rogue hardtop. The terrain of the south yard is level with wide aisles and a dirt base that is punctuated by scrub and brush growing around many of the vehicles.
While “true” woodies were no longer produced by the mid 1950s, this ’56 Mercury Monterey station wagon remains eye-catching in its design and faux “wood” finish. The majority of the vintage vehicles in the yard have been preserved in as complete a state as possible, and Quintana stressed that this is how they are sold, with no exceptions. Whole vehicles, many still retaining titles and many that ran when parked, require customers to “buy it all” or admire it and walk away.
To contact the yard, use postal mailing address: Ernest and Sons Auto Wrecking, 6262 State Hwy. Quintana’s four daughters are too young to know whether or not they share their father’s and grandfather’s passion for older vehicles.
A luxury liner with “get up and go!,” this complete 1962 Oldsmobile Starfire hardtop is in too nice of shape to be idled in a salvage yard.


Muscle cars have all but disappeared from salvage yards, so it was a treat to find this 1968 Dodge Charger squirreled away among buses, trucks and various machinery. In almost survivor-class condition, this 1938 Ford Fordor is complete down to its hubcaps and accessory bumper guards.
Only 15,494 Pontiac Super Chief Catalina hardtops were built in 1957, and this example would make a desirable restoration project. A car that makes a statement, this 1959 Cadillac 62 six-window four-door hardtop has missing glass and lenses, but with restoration help, could be transformed into a sweet boulevard cruiser.
Another finned looker from the 1950s, this ’59 Plymouth Belvedere hardtop is also a prime candidate for restoration. Still equipped with wide whitewall tires, this 1957 Ford Courier sedan delivery has a damaged tailgate, but is near complete and rust free.
While that sounds like a phrase found in a fortune cookie, it sums up a recent road trip to Colorado where I discovered Ernest and Sons Auto Wrecking, after a meandering drive on unpaved State Highway 15. The sons’ business education at the hands of their father has allowed them to expand the yard into a 40-acre, 4,000-vehicle collection of mostly complete cars and trucks.
To supplement income during slow periods, Quintana said, “Dad was a truck driver for a while. The 40 acres that comprise the business are split into north and south yards bisected by State Highway 15. Cosmetically rough, the Merc is near complete and somewhat rare as only 13,280 were produced. However, parts hunters need not be discouraged, as Quintana added, “We have lots of loose parts available,” and what’s available is well known among the brothers.
Tool boxes are allowed into the yard, but parts removal will only be allowed with the help of a yard employee. But the time may come when the business’ name has to be expanded to Ernest and Sons and Granddaughters Auto Wrecking.
Ford build just 6,178 of this model in '57, so getting this one back on the road would make a unique project for someone.


This performance-oriented 1957 Dodge Custom Royal Lancer hardtop has the desirable finned rear quarter styling so popular among today's collectors. And we’ll deliver 54 issues a year right to your mailbox every week for less than the price of a oil change! Neither the service provider nor the domain owner maintain any relationship with the advertisers. Based at the tip of the eastern shadows of the Rocky Mountains near the small town of Capulin, this salvage yard offers one of the largest collections of complete, rust-free vintage cars and trucks I’ve come across in all my years of yard tours. One of the yard’s added benefits, according to Quintana, is that “most of our vehicles have titles. He’d park a car under the A-frame, put the truck in neutral and the weight would fall and flatten the car.” While this clever device worked both inexpensively and well, Quintana winced as he recalled many of the cars his father crushed were from the 1930s through ’50s. Old Cars Weekly toured only the south yard, the inventory of which spans the 1930s through ’70s, with emphasis on cars and pickups of the ’50s and ’60s. However, there are enough random gatherings of brands and decades to offer constant “wow” moments.
While currently no computerized inventory of cars or parts exists, Quintana said he and his brothers will photograph asked-for items and e-mail images to anyone requesting them.
This example needs little beyond cosmetic attention and likely mechanical work to return to the road.
Ernest and Sons Auto Wrecking has several coupes in inventory, in both three- and five-window configurations. In case of trademark issues please contact the domain owner directly (contact information can be found in whois).
According to the yard’s owner, Ernie Quintana, it’s also the largest salvage yard in Colorado.



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