FOTPNewsletterFebruary2014 - Friends of the Peak
FOTP Newsletter February 2014

   Dear Friend of the Peak --
   We are looking forward to another great year on the mountain, thanks to all of you.  The articles below will help get you started.
   But before you go there, let me remind you of the Bear Creek Watershed open house Tuesday, February 25, 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. in the Pikes Peak room at Colorado Springs Utilities' Leon Young Service Center, 1521 Hancock Expressway, Colorado Springs, 80903.  It's an opportunity for you to provide comments.
   The current proposal addresses issues on protecting the greenback cutthroat trout in Bear Creek.  There will be information on the proposal to close some trails and reroute others.  The Forest Service's web page on Bear Creek also has information.  Trails in the Bear Creek watershed are currently closed because of damage from September's storms.
   See you at the Open House.
   Carol Beckman
In This Issue
Needed: Trail Scouts
2014 Project Schedule
Free Ride on the Cog
Crew Leader Training
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NEEDED:  TRAIL SCOUTS
Do you love trails?  Do you like to hike or run or bike or ride on the trails you love?  Then you're just the person we're looking for.  You can help us by doing what you love to do anyway.  When a problem develops on a trail, we don't always find out about it right away.   We need information.  We need trail scouts, people who are out on a trail and can scout out and report problems.  We're trying to recruit a trail scout for each trail we can work on.  It doesn't have to be an exclusive relationship.  More people can provide more information.  We plan to hold training for trail scouts, most likely in May.  We'll set a date once we know who and how many people we have.  Some problems are obvious and easy to report, like a large tree fallen across a trail.  Others might require a trained eye.  We'll get to problems as soon as we can, at least to assess them.  Some problems can be quickly fixed; others might feed into our planning for the next year.  Please consider becoming a trail scout for a trail that you're on regularly.  Even if you don't want to sign up as a trail scout, you can still report problems.  You can send e-mail to info@fotp.com, and we have a form on our web site for reporting problems.  If we learn about a problem on a trail that we don't work on, we can pass the information on to the appropriate organization.  And, yes, we know about the boulder on Barr Trail.  That's the type of problem that can take some time to resolve.  Volunteers aren't moving it.  We've proposed a short reroute around the boulder, and offered to build it.  The Forest Service is considering how best to deal with this -- safely.

Trails Needing Scouts:

620 Barr                    664 Crags                664A Crags to Summit
Crowe Gulch               652 Elk Park            704 Horsethief Park
Mount Esther              651 Mountain View   704A Pancake Rocks
Putney Gulch              Raspberry                624 St Mary's Falls
622 Seven Bridges      Ute Pass Trail           Utility Bypass
703

2014 PROJECT SCHEDULE

We've set our 2014 project schedule! See how you can help out. Some of the locations will seem familiar to volunteers who helped in 2013. We plan to work on Barr Trail, of course. Needs are ongoing there, as is our work there. Last year volunteers built a great retaining wall across a gully on the trail by Elk Park Knoll. Areas farther down the trail need help, but less heavy duty. We plan to help those areas this year. Work planned for the trail from Crags to the summit will be different this year. The last few years we've been building cairns to clarify the route above Devil's Playground. This year weĆ¢'ll work on an eroded area below Devil's Playground. The past few years we've been working on the trails on South Slope around McReynolds Reservoir and to Mason Reservoir. This year we'll improve those trails. Last year we joined Incline Friends for their project in October. We plan to join them again for three projects this year. We've been having projects on alternate Thursdays for years now, with some dedicated volunteers. Those projects are on trails easily accessible from the city. Last year, most of the Thursday projects were on Seven Bridges. This year we're returning to Seven Bridges to address areas we didn't have time for last year and also some storm damage. Seven Bridges fared fairly well through the September storms, but does have an eroded section. Once we finish with Seven Bridges, we'll move on to Saint Mary's Falls. It has some minor storm damage, plus issues that arise over time. We are working on one trail that we did not work on last year. It didn't exist last year. Many people are excited that Manitou Springs will be building the Iron Mountain Trail this year and is finally able to connect the Intemann Trail. Many groups, including Friends of the Peak, are working together to build the trail. Projects are scheduled through the summer. Friends of the Peak is leading one of the projects. You can check out all the projects on our schedule and register on our web site at the projects page.
  FREE RIDE ON THE COG

  Did you ever play Monopoly?  Wasn't it great to "Take on ride on the Reading" -- free? 
  This summer there is a way you can take a ride on the Cog -- free. 
  The folks at the Pikes Peak Cog railway have offered to take volunteers up on the Cog train to the stop at Mountain View (shown at right) for our project on Barr Trail on May 31.   Volunteers will disembark there, and walk over to Barr Trail -- about 1.5 miles.  It's a great way to access a part of the trail that needs work but is difficult to reach on a regular project day.  The Cog will have spots for 15 volunteers, up and then back down.  It's sure to be a great project
.
CREW LEADER TRAINING

Colorado Springs Parks and Rec, in conjunction with several other organizations, is offering crew leader training for the third straight year.  It is scheduled for April 25 to 27, Friday evening, Saturday, and Sunday.  Organizations involved are Trails and Open Space Coalition, Rocky Mountain Field Institute, Volunteers for Outdoor Colorado, and Friends of the Peak.  The training will cover the basics of working with and leading volunteers on trail projects, trail maintenance, and restoration.  Trail projects need qualified crew leaders.  If you have volunteered on some projects and would like to help, please consider taking the training, then becoming certified by being a crew leader on two certifying projects.  Registration will be through CS Parks and Rec.  Registration information is not available yet, but when it is we'll put information on our web site and Facebook page.
 
PROPOSED LAND EXCHANGE
  
You might have seen the article in the Gazette about a proposed land exchange between the Broadmoor and U.S. Forest Service.  The Broadmoor is currently leasing the land at Emerald Valley Ranch, off Old Stage Road, from the Forest Service, although they own the buildings.  The Broadmoor recently purchased 320 acres on the west side of Pikes Peak, near the Crags campground, that was owned by Harvey Carter.  Mr. Carter, who died in 2012, was a climber and skier, and had hoped to develop a ski area with the property. 
The Broadmoor would like to exchange the 320 acre parcel for 64 acres at Emerald Valley Ranch.  The Broadmoor is also offering to include a permanent easement on the section of Barr Trail that goes through its property.  This proposal is in its very early stages.  If the Forest Service decides to consider the exchange, there should be more information and a chance for public comments.

Contact Us:
Phone: 719-527-1384 ||   Email: info@fotp.com ||   Web: http://www.fotp.com

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