News Wednesday December 14, 2022

TOPS Extension – Next April Election

This week Colorado Springs City Council heard from Parks Director Britt Haley about the proposed TOPS (Trails, Parks and Open Space Tax) April ballot measure.


The initiative would not increase the tax, only extend it for an additional 20 years. The program is now 25 years old and has saved 7500 acres of open spaces, built or improved 53 miles of trail and built and improved 67 parks in our city.


Favorites such as Red Rock Open Space, Stratton, Blodgett, Pulpit Rock, Cheyenne Mtn. State Park and others would have been lost to development if not for TOPS. While disappointed TOPS lost in November of 2021, it was not the right time to seek an increase to the tax. Championing this 20-year extension will be our top priority in 2023. City Council will vote to approve the initiative at its January 10th meeting.


Will you help us? Contact us at and we’ll add you to our list of volunteers willing to help us win in April. Also, contact your City Council representative and encourage them to support putting TOPS on the April ballot.

Watch for more information in future Trail Talk. To learn more about the history behind some of your favorite TOPS properties check out this link: here.


Outdoor Pikes Peak Initiative

You have the opportunity to share your vision for the Pikes Peak region. What recreation options are we missing? Ideas about new trails? And what about conservation and preservation? Share your ideas at a Community Listening Session.

January 23rd Cheyenne Mtn. Jr. High School

5-6:30pm in person 7-8pm virtual. Sign up here.

Organized by Pikes Peak Outdoor Recreation Alliance. TOSC is a partner of PPORA.

Woodland Park – Park Master Plan

The city of Woodland Park is updating a 15 year old Parks Master Plan. Out of the public process, the community has identified these priorities:

  • Increase connectivity and trail access throughout the City
  • Construct an indoor recreation center expansion to Woodland Aquatic Center
  • Invest in Improvements to Meadow Wood Sport Complex
  • Develop a plan to improve and maintain natural surface social trails
  • Invest in improvements to Memorial Park
  • Improve trailheads
  • Develop mountain bike skills park

TOSC was delighted that Ring the Peak Trail was listed as a trail connectivity priority. All projects start

with good planning. Kudos to Woodland Park on their planning effort! To learn more:

Palmer Lake Star

On Sundance Mountain, above the town of Palmer Lake in northern El Paso County, a giant star glows through the holiday season as a symbol of hope and community. The star also serves as a unique backdrop for one of the region’s most festive walking options. In the heart of Palmer Lake is El Paso County Parks’ Palmer Lake Recreation Area. There is an easy .8 mile loop around the lake where you can sneak in a quick dusk walk around the lake in the glow of the big star! The park does close after sundown, so be sure to honor posted rules and times. If a cold walk is not possible, the lake and the star can be enjoyed from a car ride through Palmer Lake.

History of the Palmer Lake Star

TOSC Relive Video of the Palmer Lake Loop


Give Pikes Peak


We Need Your Help Now! TOSC was able to secure $26,600 in matching grants. Our Most ever! But we need you to help us “unlock” those dollars. Donate now and make this our best Give ever.


Special Give offers this week (Dec 14-18):


Give $10 to Blackpackers & $10 to TOSC; Get an exclusive “Trails are for Everyone” Ornament*.


Give $25; Get a TOSC Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory Bar*.


Give $20 to Blackpackers & $20 to TOSC; Get the Chocolate Bar* AND the “Trails are for Everyone” Ornament*.


*items available for pick-up only at the TOSC office located : 702 E. Boulder St. Please call ahead and schedule your pick-up – (719) 633-6884. Thanks!

Donate Here!

Historic Stonework Structures in Monument Valley Park


We would like to highlight one of our partners, the Friends of Monument Valley Park and the exceptional work that they have accomplished as stewards of this historic amenity. For the past 10 years the Friends of Monument Valley Park have used State Historical grants and other funding sources ($500,000) to provide for the upkeep and repair for many of the beautiful stonework features, most notably the Geologic Column, the 1917 Willamette Avenue entrance, and Columbia Street entrance. Along with the grant funding, the FMVP have used dollars received from participation in previous GIVE! Campaigns to enable the successful completion of an admirable list of projects, and they plan to do the same for the dollars received as participants in the 2022 GIVE! Many of us enjoy the unparalleled beauty and rich history of this park created by General William J. Palmer. Please consider including a donation in support of the FMVP through GIVE! this year and we look forward to celebrating in 2023 the opening of Shadow Lake and touring the many beautiful stonework features. Sounds like a walking or biking tour possibility! 


Electric Safari – Cheyenne Mountain Zoo

Dec 9-23, 25- Jan 1

Electric Safari at Cheyenne Mountain Zoo is the only place in Colorado Springs where you can see over 85 one-of-a-kind light sculptures while celebrating the season with our animals at the same time! More details- here.

Christmas Movie Night

Buffalo Lodge Bicycle Resort

Wed, Dec 21 5:30-7:30pm


FREE TO THE PUBLIC. Join us for a surprise holiday-themed family friendly movie each Wednesday in December on the big screen next to our cozy fireplace! Arrive early for Happy Hour pricing on locally brewed beers, wines and spirits from 4-6pm Popcorn, cookies and hot cocoa will also be available for sale. Facebook Event Page

El Paso County Search and Rescue – Rescue Run

Rain, Snow or 20 Below!

Jan 1st 10 AM


We are excited to be back with a new course to welcome in the New Year for our 45th time!


These items of interest were new last year and are returning for this year’s race: Start/Finish location change to: Norris-Penrose Events Center, 1045 Lower Gold Camp Rd, Colorado Springs, CO 80905


NEW LAST YEAR: 5K and 10K start together at 10:00am. No race day registration. Online registration ends Dec 31, 6:00PM Mountain Time.

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