News Wednesday July 22, 2020

Do Your Part to Keep Trails and Trailheads Open
The Manitou Incline remains closed, the town of Palmer Lake has banned non-resident parking on city streets and Green Mountain Falls is considering closing trails and trailheads. Traffic congestion, parking issues and greater than normal numbers of trail users are prompting these decisions.
Of course, when a trail or park is closed, it penalizes those residents who live close to that facility and just pushes the overcrowding problem elsewhere – making it worse.
TOSC is actively communicating with decision-makers, offering our assistance and encouraging them to keep trails open. You can help by making sure you park in legal lots or along streets where parking is permitted. When accessing the trailhead, stay to the side of the road and allow traffic to move through. Don’t litter and please clean up after your leashed dog. And if you see a neighbor or local townsperson, it wouldn’t hurt to thank them for providing access to the trails. Finally, make sure to wear a mask or buff where 6 feet of separation isn’t possible.
Our parks and trails remain the healthiest and safest places for us to be, both mentally and physically. Let’s do all we can to preserve what access we have.
TOSC PHOTO CONTEST – ENTER TO WIN EXCITING PRIZES
July 15 – 31, 2020

Scroll through your phone and pick your favorite to submit for a chance to win some amazing prizes, including:
  • An overnight package at Great Wolf Lodge
  • A two-night stay at the Downtown Hilton Garden
  • Passes to Cheyenne Mountain Zoo
  • (3) $100 Target Gift Cards
  • A Ziplining Adventure
  • An Osprey Backpack
  • Kangaroo Coffee Gift Cards
For more information or to enter your photo visit: trailsandopenspaces.org/PhotoContest
Submissions due by July 31, 2020.

PARK AND TRAIL UPDATES

Public Health Ambassadors in Parks
New COVID Park Staff, known as public health ambassadors, will be working in our city’s busiest outdoor spaces: Garden of the Gods, Palmer Park, North Cheyenne Cañon and Red Rock Canyon Open Space. These new staff members will pick up trash, disinfect surfaces in high traffic areas and help educate visitors about COVID-19 recommendations and responsible recreation.
Park and Recreation Month
July is Park and Recreation month! It’s a good time to recognize the people who work in our parks, recreation and nature centers, manage our youth sports leagues and clean the bathrooms at our trailheads. As a group, they are making our region a great place to live, work and play. As individuals, they are passionate about their jobs and committed to protecting those resources we all enjoy. Take time to get to know them!  To celebrate:
  • Consider picking up a bag of trash along your favorite trail.
  • Volunteer with a local Friends group. Many are resuming cleanup and maintenance projects, with Covid restrictions.
  • Thank Park Staff for all they do when you see them on the job.
  • And of course, follow posted rules when you are in parks, open space or on trails.
Buffered Bike Lane
In conjunction with repaving occurring this summer Weber St will be reconfigured with buffered bike lanes from Pikes Peak Ave through downtown and the Near North End to Uintah St. “Adding bike infrastructure will create more neighborhood feel to this low volume roadway and will provide connections to several bike routes and key destinations without compromising traffic flow.” Tim Roberts, City Transportation Planner
Mask Mandate in Manitou
The city of Manitou Springs has a mask mandate requiring people to wear masks in public, even outdoors if they’re within six feet of another person. Violations will be handled by code enforcement and could net a fine of $25 for a first offense, $50 for a second offense, and possible arrest for trespass if a person fails to leave a business.

TOSC

20|20 Parks Challenge
Have you been to Fountain Creek yet? Visit in July and post a picture using #tosc2020challenge to get entered to win some fun prizes from Mountain Equipment Recyclers (MER). This area is beautiful; it has plenty of water and trees, so it is the perfect place to visit on a hot summer day.
Preview the park, watch Fountain Creek Walk with Willow.
Participate in TOSC’s 20|20 Challenge!
NORTH CATAMOUNT RESERVOIR
Looking for a quiet place to hike with the family? Escape to the North Catamount Reservoir for some solitude and beautiful views. Please note there is a fee,  $5 per person (age 16+) and parking is limited. You can expect it to be less crowded on weekdays in the early afternoon. Easy trails with lots of places along the way for kids to stop, play and explore.
Visit Get Out Spread Out for more adventures.

TOSC Member Hikes and Bike Ride

Hikes – Sat. August 1, 8:00 and 8:30 AM
Bike Ride – Fri. August 14, 8:00 AM

We know many of  you are eager to hike the region’s newest public open space – the Pineries. TOSC is excited to gather with a small group of members to explore the area. Join Hike Bob for a 9 mile hike that loops around the entire open space. Or join Susan Davies on an up and back 5 mile hike. Or accompany Allen Beauchamp on a bike ride of the 9 mile loop on August 14.

In accordance with current state health regulations, each hike will have a maximum of 10 participants – plus the hike leader. Masks are required. Check your schedule and register early!
 
 
Please note these outings are for TOSC Members only. Want to become a member? Join Trails and Open Space Coalition by making a donation online. For questions about membership, please email Sharie@trailsandopenspaces.org.
Urban Trail Challenge
Are you up to the challenge? The Trails and Open Space Coalition presents the Urban Trail Challenge! The biggest virtual biking event in Colorado Springs will take place the weekend of September 25th-27th. All riders will receive a commemorative event neck gaiter and event bib so you can show your pride for your urban trails! Riders will be able to ride their favorite urban trails or pick from routes that TOSC has hand-picked showcasing different urban trails and parks across the region. Along the way, riders will have the option to complete different “selfie challenges” ranging from finding hidden landmarks, completing rides in costumes to seeing how many parks and trails you can visit during the event! Don’t back down from this challenge, be looking for the event registration on August 1st!

Community

Bicycle-Friendly Driver Webinar
Wed. July 22, 12:00 – 1:15 PM
Learn and review laws and safe practices for both drivers and bicyclists, how to navigate on-street bicycle infrastructure and how to avoid common crashes between drivers and bicyclists. Become a certified Bicycle-Friendly Driver with Bicycle Colorado for free and help make Colorado’s roads safer for everyone. Click here to register.
 
 
30 THINGS TO DO IN YOUR NEIGHBORHOOD
Looking for fun activities to do with your kids? Hike It Baby has some great resources for fun family friendly activities.
Click on the image to download 30 Things To Do In Your Neighborhood. You can find more outdoor adventures for kids at hikeitbaby.com.
Plastic Bag Fee
When a member is passionate about an issue that impacts our trails, we pay attention. COS City Council is considering placing a plastic bag fee on the November ballot. As member Alli Schuh explains, “why do plastic bag fees work? Plastic bags are a huge contributor to plastic pollution in our open spaces, waterways and neighborhoods. Studies have shown that a plastic bag fee is extremely effective at reducing overall carry out bag consumption through changing consumer behavior.”
Although TOSC has not taken a position on the fee, we are committed to the “Leave No Trace” principles including “dispose of waste properly.”
To learn more about plastic bag fee initiatives:
 

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