News Wednesday December 22, 2021

Looking Forward to 2022
Not all gifts fit under a tree. Coming up in 2022 we are looking forward to Coleman Community Park Master planning, the grand opening of Panorama Park, and the completion of the northern stretch of the Legacy Loop. All are city projects on TOSC’s priority list for completion.
Also in 2022, El Paso County will be opening Kane Ranch Open Space near Fountain and Santa Fe Open Space near Palmer Lake. We will bring you dates and highlights as soon as they become available.


Progress on Pikes Peak Greenway Trail
The unusually warm weather has provided good working conditions as the Parks, Recreation and Cultural Services Department continues maintenance work on a section of the Pikes Peak Greenway Trail in northern Colorado Springs. Much of the utility work and the early stages of the concrete work have been addressed at the southern end of the work zone.
Crews are also forming up sections of the trail on the southern end for the next pour of concrete as it gets widened to 12 feet. Making this project even more challenging, access and getting materials to the site are complex and for the most part, need to be done manually. Old asphalt has been removed and work has begun on the retaining wall north of Criterium Bikes. This retaining wall will be removed and reconstructed in order to install a new storm drain under the trail corridor. The trail will be raised in this area to meet proper accessibility guidelines for trail construction.
Foothills Trail detour north of Gateway Road starts January 3
A short section of the Foothills Trail north of Gateway Road will close temporarily for utility work and other construction activities starting on Monday, January 3. The closure is expected to last through the spring of 2022. A signed trail detour route will be provided. The detour will utilize the existing trail network including a portion of the Gateway Trail and adds approximately two minutes of additional walk time.
Temporary entrance to Garden of Gods Park
at Gateway Road now open
The temporary entrance to Garden of Gods Park at Gateway Road opened on Saturday, Dec. 11. The short temporary paved roadway provides vehicle access from 30th Street to the Park from the south while the new entry roundabout is built. This temporary configuration will be in place until the new roundabout opens in the spring of 2022. Park access, as well as access to the Garden of the Gods Visitor and Nature Center, will be maintained through the duration of the project.
For more information on the project:
Aftermath of Windstorm
“Look for the helpers. You can always find people who are helping.” Fred Rogers said this now famous quote when talking about what comforted him after witnessing disaster. After the epic windstorm that hit our community last week, we saw hundreds of helpers rushing in to help. Not long after the last gust of hurricane strength wind subsided that TOSC Trail Ambassadors enthusiastically hiked their favorite open spaces to record the damage. To their relief, they found minimal damage in places like Blodgett Open Space, Red Rock Canyon Open Space and Stratton Open Space. A few downed trees were found in places like Ute Valley Park and reported using GoCOS!. In North Cheyenne Canon Park, an email went out late on Friday night asking for help picking up willow branches that had broken off. Eager to assist, the Friends of Cheyenne Canon provided coffee and snacks to the volunteers who showed up to help. Where there was a lot of wind damage on City park property (Midland Trail for example), the City of Colorado Springs Parks, Recreation and Cultural Services staff stepped up. Over 80 staff members from the Parks Maintenance Division responded to the massive cleanup effort. Our urban forest was scarred by this legendary wind event; however, we should focus on being thankful for everyone who played a role in helping out the community with the cleanup.
The Goats are Back!
Take a moment between now and Christmas Day and check out the weed-eating goats at Bear Creek Regional park. Courtesy the Charmaine Nymann Community Garden Association, the goats return each year to eat weeds and improve the soil. Learn more at and find out how to reserve a garden plot for next spring.
New Incline Bench
Eagle Scout Noah Gottwalt, second from the right in the dark jacket approached the COS Parks department some weeks ago offering to do a project to earn his Eagle Scout award.
Incline Friends paid for the bench materials (his dad paid for the cement) and along with Parks Ranger Madison Peddy (pictured in the background) and a few of his fellow-scouts, they installed the bench last Sunday.


RISE|Southeast and Youth Advisory Council tour Panorama Park
On Saturday, December 11th, staff from the Colorado Springs Parks, Recreation, and Cultural Services Department provided a guided tour of the Panorama Park project. A group of RISE|Southeast Resident Leaders and members of the Youth Advisory Council (YAC) were able to see first-hand the progress completed to date. Panorama Park, at 13.5 acres, is the largest neighborhood park renovation in the history of Colorado Springs, and this effort will completely reshape and enhance this central location for people living in 80916 and beyond.
Members of the RISE|Southeast and YAC have been instrumental in the master planning, continued public engagement processes and they are part of a larger team that brought this major undertaking to the City Council District 4. From the start, the collaboration between the Trust for Public Land, City of COS Parks, and the RISE|Southeast has been incredibly successful, supported by many other participatory partner organizations along with way, including the Trails and Open Space Coalition.
We look forward to continuing our collaboration on this transformational project and look forward to celebrating the grand re-opening of this amazing public space in the Summer of 2022.
Thank you Lauren!
Each year Lauren Collier, owner of Live Dream Colorado makes a generous contribution to TOSC as her 1% for the Planet contribution. Lauren uses our parks, trails and open spaces. Her support helps preserve, protect and maintain the public spaces where she recreates.
To learn more about 1% for the Planet:
Where Will TOSC Staff be Hiking over the Holidays?
Have you heard of the Incline Trifecta? There are three public Front Range inclines within 60 minutes of each other. My goal is to do all three in one day. The adventure won’t only be a test of athletic prowess, but also a test of patience and luck (finding parking at all three sites can be tough). The Reuter-Hess Incline (Parker, CO) is a mild warmup at 132 steps with a trail that is 1.07 miles. The Philip S. Miller Challenge Hill (Castle Rock, CO) is a 200-step incline that provides one of the best panoramic views of the Front Range in Douglas County. The adventure finishes with the Manitou Incline featuring the monster 2,000 foot elevation gain over the course of 2,744 steps. Please remember to make a free reservation before going to the Manitou Incline. Bonus Fact: There is a fourth Front Range Incline in Canon City! That one is only accessible to residents and guests of the Royal Gorge Ranch and Resort. –Aaron Rogers (TOSC Program Coordinator)


RISE|Southeast Walking Group and Kickoff
During the latter part of 2021, the leadership of the RISE|Southeast organization identified the need for a community-driven approach to creating opportunities for people to come together and take a walk, a simple stroll through one of the parks or trails in the Southeast area of Colorado Springs. We were pleased to partner with them as it met one of the project goals of our #GetOutGetHealthy initiative and we’re happy to report that the walks have been taking place on a regular basis in Memorial Park around Prospect Lake and along the Sand Creek Trail from Wildflower Park. Look for more information on the upcoming January 1st kickoff for the 2022 season, come take a stroll with RISE|Southeast and TOSC to start the new year off on the right foot!
Learn more about our #GetOutGetHealthy initiative.
First Day Hikes at CMSP
Sat. Jan 1, 10:00 AM
Sleet, snow (wouldn’t that be nice!) or 20 below, come and enjoy the first day of 2022 at Cheyenne Mountain State Park! Choose from three different hikes ranging from 1, 3, and 5 miles long. All hikes will start from the Limekiln Trailhead. No reservations are required… just be at the trailhead a little before 10:00 AM. Be prepared for the weather: dress appropriately and bring water. After you finish, stop by the Visitor Center for some hot chocolate and cookies compliments of the Friends of CMSP. Friends, fresh air and fun make for an all-around great way to kick off the new year! Hikes are free, but a parks pass is required ($9/daily, $80/annual, or $120/annual).
Electric Safari
Now – Jan 1, NOT open on Christmas Eve
5:00 – 8:30 PM
Lights, Animals and Holiday Spirit. Electric Safari at Cheyenne Mountain Zoo has over 60 one-of-a-kind light sculptures! Get photos with NEW larger-than-life illuminated inflatable animals throughout the Zoo. SANTA will be available for photos and to hear wishes in the Safari Lodge through Thursday, Dec. 23. Sky Rides and Hot Cocoa available for additional cost. Advance timed tickets are required; no walk-up tickets available.
Trail Side Bike Maintenance Class
Thur. Jan 6, 6:00 PM
Come learn about proper bike maintenance practices and solutions to common trail side problems. Elevation Wheel Company will talk about basic repair and maintenance and then open things up to a question and answer session, allowing for more advanced topics.
This event is open to the public and completely free so invite your friends. Please RSVP via Facebook to help ensure there are snacks and drinks for all who attend.
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