Routt County trails programs receive funding from Colorado Parks and Wildlife | SteamboatToday.com

Routt County trails programs receive funding from Colorado Parks and Wildlife

Liz Forster

As a part of the $6.18 million in grants for motorized and non-motorized trails programs throughout the state, Colorado Parks and Wildlife distributed $1,525,095 to northwest Colorado and $224,780 to Howelsen Hill, Hahn’s Peak, and Routt National Forest.

“Colorado residents love their trails, and CPW’s trails program provides something for every trail user in the state,” said Tom Morrissey, state trails program manager.

Hahn's Peak, which received all of its $50,000 in requested funding, will use the money next year to address public trail requests, in particular, the 40 miles of proposed trails on Buffalo Pass that are also receiving funding from the city’s 2A trail initiative. This project would create a system of 25 miles of new trail with 15 miles of existing trails not yet in a system.

"The community has identified problems with existing trails and opportunities for new ones," said Kent Foster, recreation program manager of the Hahn's Peak District. "We want to look at existing trail systems, then turn it around and recreate trails in a potentially better location, using a better route or connecting it to other trails"

Funding from CPW in support of the city’s 2A trail initiative was not restricted to Hahn’s Peak. Howelsen Hill also received $44,780 in funding for the construction and maintenance of a new flow trail system starting at the top of the Howelsen Hill chair lift.

With this funding, Howelsen Hill, in conjunction with the Youth Corps, would build one beginner and one intermediate flow trail for downhill bikers only, which would wrap around the backside of the mountain parallel to Mile Run. Later on, another uphill trail would be constructed so the flow trails could continue to the base of Howelsen without intersecting with a uphill, multi-use trail.

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"Our vision for the trails is two-fold, and this funding is helping us to complete phase one” said Craig Robinson, the city’s parks, open space and trails manager.

Winnie Delliquadri, Steamboat Spring’s government programs manager, explained that the new trails will benefit bikers of all levels, as well as non-bikers.

"Right now, you can go up and down all of the trails on Howelsen, and most of them are multi-use,” Delliquadri said. “These trails will segregate people that are going fast downhill from people going up at a slower pace. Also, the designated beginner and intermediate trails will help with skills development for kids and new bikers."

The Routt County National Forest, which received $85,000 for trail crews and $45,000 for a timberline driver crew, was not available for comment.

To reach Liz Forster, call 970-871-4374, email lforster@SteamboatToday.com or follow her on Twitter @LizMForster