What's new at Red Rock Canyon

  • News From Ranger Wes -February 2021

    The City will begin implementing nightly after-hour gate closures in Red Rock Canyon Open Space on Friday, Feb. 4. The gates, located at the park’s main entrance off Highway 24, will restrict access while the park is closed, 9 p.m.-5 a.m. (Nov. 1-April 30) and 10 p.m.-5 a.m. (May 1-Oct. 31). This decision follows the success of after-hour gating in other city parks, including North Cheyenne Cañon, Garden of the Gods and Palmer Park, and we anticipate that overnight gating will have a lasting, positive influence in Red Rock Canyon Open Space as well. Nightly gating helps curtail illegal activity that regularly occurs when parks are closed, including illegal dumping and fires. The gates will also allow for closures during emergency situations when evacuation is necessary and to help with partial closures during maintenance operations.

    Greenlee Trail Improvements

    All the work for the Lion trail work will be completed in the next day or so. With the nice winter weather Parks will have our contractor  Singletrack Trails advance some trail maintenance work and improvements on the Greenlee Trail in Red Rock Canyon Open Space. Specifically the work on the Greenlee will be between the Quarry Pass Trail on the north and the Mesa Trail on the south, This location has been on the list of areas to improve with Ranger Wes and did receive some light maintenance this past fall. The first part of the work will start this week and last about 3 weeks (weather dependent). We anticipate should be no impacts to public access during the project.

    Overarching, the goals of the work include:

    • Improving the trail sustainability
    • Reducing the erosion on the existing trail
    • Reducing the required ongoing  maintenance for the trails (specifically the old roads- see note below for master plan reference)
    • Enhancing the recreation experience
    • Improving user safety by eliminating steep trail sections that are highly erosive causing deep gullies to form after summer rains
    • Improving the user experience to provide a trail compatible with the master plans’ design guidelines.

    This will be accomplished by several approaches:

    • Construction of small reroutes along fall-line trail within the existing trail corridor.
    • Providing sinuosity (back and forth) of the new trail alignment
    • Narrowing the trail from the 8-10’ wide trail to a 4’ wide trail single track trail
    • Constructing and enhancing the grade reversals.
    • Building trail to better trail standards
    • Improvements to existing trail are shown in white on the map below and total 1,500 feet of trail

    Significant reroutes outside the existing trail

    In two locations the trail will need to be rerouted outside of the existing trail alignment. This is needed to provide a more sustainable trail grade to achieve the goals above. The two proposed reroutes are shown in the map below.

    • Location1: Highlighted in the bright yellow on the map below.  This section is 725 Feet of new trail, 48” wide. It would require closure (shown in red) of  225 feet of steep fall-line trail.
    • Location 2: The concept is shown in light orange color on the map below. Final design will be required and is being working on over the next few weeks but the concept shows new trail construction of 1530 feet. Closure shown in purple would include 1,175 feet of steep and fall-line trail. This location is prone to severe erosion and washouts in the summer rains, ice buildup in the winter time. Its current location also provides easy illegal access to the ridgeline to the east, which has been problematic for our rangers 

    The first effort will be underway yet this week as the weather conditions allow and will include the trail improvements (white lines) and the first reroute ( yellow line). We anticipate the second phase to be final designed within the next two weeks with completion this spring. This type of improvements has been reference in Red Rock Canyon Master and Management Plan regarding sustainable trails on the old roads (Page IV.9 column 2). 

    See map here



    Major Improvement to Lion Trail

    Big news! The Lion Trail in Red Rock Canyon Open Space is now open! For a map of the work click here.


    Unfortunately we have found several new homeless camps along Hwy 24 and just West of the 31st St lot. We encourage anyone from the public to report these issues to the  Parks dept, or to submit a request through the GoCOS! App or at https://coloradosprings.gov/page/citizen-request-gocosprings-app


    If you have an idea of how to improve our open space please share it with us. Your friends’ group Board of Directors is looking for suggestions and we will consider all reasonable ideas. Please contact us here .


    Here is a link to an article on trail etiquette from REI:   Trail Etiquette: Who has the right-of-way?

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