What's new at Red Rock Canyon

  • June 26 Trail Work in RRC

    Join Friends of Red Rock Canyon to improve our open space. Work will be in the vicinity of the quarry and nearby area. Time is 4:45 to 8:00 pm. The CERVIS link says start time is 5:00 pm but please be there by 4:45. Sign up HERE and please contact Shanti at shantitoll@hotmail.com.

    RMFI Work Day in RRC April 20, 2024

    Join RMFI on Earth Day for a one-half day stewardship volunteer day in Red Rock Canyon. Click HERE TO register.

    Dec 10, 2023 News from Ranger Wes

    Roundup Pond Reclamation Site:

    • I am working on signage for the site which will inform visitors of the work performed, and also reminding them to use the designated trail. I’ll be conducting a site “clean-up” to remove older signage and reduce/remove the temporary fencing. I plan to leave some temp. fencing in along the road, and take out the fencing along Roundup.
    • The plants we put in this summer seem to be doing well. This Spring will be informative, weather permitting I hope to see a lot of growth.
      • We will be looking at some volunteer weed mitigation days, focusing on noxious weeds (class A/B). If FoRRC is interested, please let me know and we can look to set something up. This might also be a good opportunity to partner with Ute Pass Elementary again.
      • As mentioned previously, we will be continuing some revegetation work intermittently as opportunities/interested parties present themselves.

    Trails project:

    All contract work has been completed!

    Park staff will continue to monitor/assess these areas. I know we have a couple areas where folks are still trying to use old trails (particularly, Palmer Redrock/Se 16’s old steep alignment)- we want to address any issues like this before they get too “burned in” so if you see this, please pass it along.

    Wayfinding project:

    • All wayfinding posts have been installed, stickers are being produced and will be applied weather permitting.
    • We are still working on content for kiosks & maps, I will update when we have any additional developments/news.

    Bike Park:

    • The armored berm has been completed in the MTB skills area.
    • We found an adopter for the downhill jump park, and should have some volunteer days coming up in 2024.

    Other trail work:

    • We recently performed maintenance on Mesa Trail to fine-tune some of the prior drain repairs, and clean drains which filled up this year.
    • We made improvements to Meadowlark Trail to shed water better, and addressed some of the braiding along Sand Canyon in the area. The intersection with Sand Canyon has a pretty steep run (~50-60 ft), we are exploring an alignment adjustment to make this section sustainable.
    • In 2024 we plant to work on the drainage along the Red Rock Canyon Trail to the North of the Quarry Pass area- this work probably won’t be performed until Spring, and would involve basic drain maintenance over a couple hundred feet.

    Leave No Trace initiative:

    • Leave No Trace as launched several Online Courses. The “101” course is a great option for folks looking for a short introduction to Leave No Trace, and also a good refresher for those of us who have already had training! Other more specific trainings are being added all the time, so be sure to check back in at https://lnt.org/get-involved/training-courses/online-courses/
    • With Gillian Rossi taking on additional duties in her new role in Manitou, Carrie Supino has taken over as the State Advocate role for East Colorado- she is a great resource for all things LNT! She can be reached at EastCOadvocate@LNT.org
      • Similarly, you can contact me for anything LNT-specific for the city of Colorado Springs..

    Homeless camps/activity:

    • A large homeless camp was removed from RRCOS in the vicinity of the 31st St lot, and you may see some ongoing removal/cleanup activity this week. As always, we want to respond to camps before they get too big and cause more damage- camps (and otoher maintenance) issues can be reported to me directly, or via the GoCOS! App/website: https://coloradosprings.gov/gocos .

    10/18/23 Ute Pass Elementary School Visit

    The Friends of Red Rock Canyon partnered with Ute Pass Elementary School and the City of Colorado Springs to host a full day field trip for the fourth, fifth and sixth grades of the school, consisting of 100 students, teachers and parents. The City provided 227 varieties of native flora for the students to plant in the area of the old reclaimed catch pond and the newly redesigned Roundup Trail. Ranger Wes supervised the planting with other Parks employees and a board member. While fifty students planted vegetation in the morning, the other fifty students split into two groups and were led on hikes. Board members led two separate hikes with twenty-five students and teacher each. The students then had lunch and the groups switched activities in the afternoon. The morning hiking groups did the planting and the planting groups went on hikes. Many thanks to Ranger Wes, Miles G and Glenn P for coordinating this field trip. Everyone had a safe and rewarding experience. Permission was granted to take and post these photos.

    Red Rock Rag Newsletter

    Click on the “News” tab at the top of the page to see the Summer 2023 edition of our newsletter as well as older archived editions.

    June 22, 2023 Trail Improvements Update

    This from David Deitemeyer, Senior Lanscape Architect, City Parks Department:

    Wanted to share a quick update that our trail contractor for the improvements in Red Rock Canyon Open Space has now mobilized over to the last phase of work on the Palmer Trail, Parallel Trail and Waterfall Trail area. We anticipate this work to take about two-three months with very minimal impact on public access. Any trail access closures may only be limited to sections of the Parallel Trail later in the project. Those details will be made available as we get closer.

    At this time, the contractor will build portions of the new Palmer Trail (from the east side of the Parallel Trail intersection) and the Waterfall Trails over the next few weeks. Both the new section when built and old section of the Palmer Trail at the west end of the project site are planned to be open for about two weeks together before the old, very washed-out, unsustainable section is decommissioned.  This will hopefully allow some time for trail users to get to know the changes. Temporary signage will also be added in this area.

    More details to come as the work progresses but wanted to make sure your groups were aware of the next phase of work. Feel free to reach out to Wes or I with any questions or comments.



    June 8, 2023 Hogback Valley Trail Update

    Crews will begin closing the former “Hogback Valley Trail” on the east side of Red Rock Canyon Open Space on Monday, June 12. Originally constructed as an access road by the former landowner, this trail was unsustainable and prone to erosion. The new Chamberlain Trail, which opened in early May, now provides a sustainable trail corridor to replace the existing access road.

    Field Trip for Ute Pass Elementary School 2023

    On  May 1 the Friends of Red Rock Canyon partnered with the school and the City of Colorado Springs to host a full day field trip for the entire student body of Ute Pass Elementary, consisting of 175 students, teachers and parents. The school was able to secure a grant to purchase native flora for the students to plant in the area of the old reclaimed catch pond and the newly redesigned Roundup Trail. Ranger Wes provided safety instruction and was joined by about six other rangers and David, Glenn, Shanti, Sean, Dave and Dan from the board. Everyone had a great time and a rewarding experience.


    FoRRC Helps Ute Pass Elementary Get Leave No Trace Accreditation

    Last fall, the Friends received a gracious letter from an instructor at Ute Pass Elementary school thanking us for helping them achieve a Leave No Trace Youth Program Accreditation. This is the first school in the nation to do this. Read details HERE. On April 22, 2022, FoRRC teamed up with teachers, parents and students from the school for an educational field day in Red Rock Canyon Open Space for this(see below). 

    Please Stay on Designated Trails

    Below is a link to a KKTV newscast at RRCOS about the importance of staying on designated trails and the damage caused by rogue trails. https://www.kktv.com/2021/08/24/destructive-avoidable-park-rangers-reminding-hikers-not-go-off-trails-or-take-short-cuts/


    Historical Quarry Photos

    These photos were sent to FoRRC by Scott Schow, great, great grandson of the original founder of the Greenlee Quarry. The Second photo is of Juanita Schow and Bud Greenlee, grandchildren of the original owner of the quarry.


    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 .

    Trail Tip of the Month-Rock Cairns

    Here is a link to an interesting article about on rock cairns at National parks: Rock Cairns



                                               LEAVE  NO TRACE


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