Location: Squirrel Creek Road, Colorado Springs 80928 (4 miles east of Link Rd, right before MM Equestrian heading east; west of Peyton Hwy.)
Park Hours: April – October: 5 :00 AM to 9:00 PM, November – March: 6:00 AM to 6:00 PM
Amenities: The 440 acre opens space is located east of Fountain. The Lariat Loop Trail will be the primary natural surface trail, approximately 3.5 miles in length, suitable for hiking, running, bicycling, and especially equestrian use as the width will accommodate two people on horseback riding side by side. Trailhead including equestrian parking and a turnaround loop, portable restroom enclosure and some interpretive signage. Kane Ranch offers expansive views of native grasslands, pockets of cottonwood trees and unique views of Pikes Peak and Cheyenne Mountain. Additional trails are planned for the property and will provide future connectivity to future regional trails including the Black Squirrel Creek Trail and Kane Ranch Trail.
Please NOTE: This area is inhabited by rattlesnakes, please stay on trail and keep dogs on leash! Goat head thorns are also prevalent.
History: Kane Ranch Open Space, the newest El Paso County open space property, open to the public on Wednesday, March 23, 2022! El Paso County acquired the land in 2003 through the execution of the will of former rancher, Alexander F. Kane.
The 440-acre parcel that is now Kane Ranch Open Space was once part of a 5,000-acre ranch established in the 1940s by a woman named Wanden Matthews La Farge. She hired Alexander “Andy” Kane, a local rancher, as the foreman, and the two eventually were married and the ranch became known as Kane Ranch. In addition to ranching, Wanden Kane served two terms as mayor of Fountain. She was Colorado’s first female mayor. The ranch became a successful quarter-horse enterprise, and Wanden and Alexander amassed a considerable fortune. To support their shared belief in independence through education, they established the Kane Family Foundation, which provides merit-based college scholarships to promising students in southern Colorado who might not otherwise be able to afford a college education. Wanden’s son Oliver Albee “Pete” La Farge was a writer, a painter, a poet, a Shakespearian actor, and a rodeo rider. But he was best known as a folksinger in the Greenwich Village of the 1950s and 1960s, where he spent time with Bob Dylan, Ramblin’ Jack Elliot, Dave Van Ronk, and Pete Seeger, among others. He wrote five of the eight songs on Johnny Cash’s 1964 “Bitter Tears” album dedicated to the status and treatment of American Indians. “The Ballad of Ira Hayes” and “As Long as the Grass Shall Grow” are two of his better-known songs. He is buried in the Kane Family Cemetery which is now encircled by the Kane Ranch Open Space.
For more info, view the Kane Ranch Open Space Master Plan.