Environmental briefs: Silverthorne opens new motorized trails | SummitDaily.com

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Environmental briefs: Silverthorne opens new motorized trails

After receiving a grant from Colorado Parks and Wildlife's Off-Highway Vehicle program last summer, the Dillon Ranger District announced earlier this week the opening of new trails in Silverthorne near Tenderfoot Mountain.

Specifically, the three new trails are in the Frey Gulch and Tenderfoot areas, and are also the result of help from both the Friends of the Dillon Ranger District (FDRD) and Summit County Off Road Riders (SCORR). The trails, Moab-Knobby, Powerline Loop and Seven of Nine, parallel the Frey Gulch Road and create several loop opportunities.

"These new trails will be open to off highway motorcycles and they will also provide new opportunities for mountain bike riders," Ken Waugh, Dillon Ranger District recreation staff officer, said in a news release.

Frey Gulch is an important elk calving area, thus the new trails there will open to motorized use on July 1 following the calving season. They will then be open to motorcycles until Oct. 10, when they will close to reduce conflict with fall big game hunters.

The Forest Service and its partners will continue construction on the Tenderfoot Mountain trail system throughout the summer. In addition to construction crews, the Forest Service will have an OHV maintenance and patrol crew checking the Dillon Ranger District OHV routes including the Golden Horseshoe, the forks of the Swan River, Deer Creek and the Tenderfoot trail system.

Trail construction project days are scheduled for Aug. 13 and Sept. 10. If you would like to help, please contact FDRD at (970) 262-3449.

Summit fire crew heads to wildfire

The Red, White & Blue Fire District announced on Thursday, June 30, the deployment of a three-man crew and wildland engine to Rifle, Colorado, to assist with the Houston Mountain Fire.

By Wednesday night, the fire, which is in a wooded area and is suspected to have started from a lightning strike, had consumed 11 acres and was spreading quickly. The crew joins other ground and aerial resources on scene in order to control the fire.

On Thursday, Red White & Blue also announced it had fulfilled a resource order from the Grand Junction Interagency Fire Dispatch for the deployment of an operations technical specialist to the Rosebud Fire in Pitkin County near Gunnision, Colorado. Capt. Matt Benedict left during the late afternoon on Monday, June 27 for attachment to the incident.

While small, the fire is in a heavily wooded, mountainous area and is spreading because of higher temperatures and excess winds. Aircraft is currently being used to combat the blaze in conjunction with ground operations. Fire departments urge both residents and visitors to use extreme caution with campfires, smoking materials, or any activity that produces sparks or items that can easily start a fire in dry grass areas.

Finally, Red White & Blue is pleased to announce that after many months of meetings, specs and manufacturing the fire district has taken delivery of a new E-ONE fire engine that will be put into service at its Tiger Road fire station.

"The engine is a result of over a one-year long process to design and build the most efficient, effective and safe apparatus for use in our district," Chief Jim Keating, said in a news release. "Our internal specifications committee worked tirelessly to assure we would obtain the best product possible for our challenging climate and geographic location."

The fire engine features a 750-gallon water carrying capacity, 1,500-gallon-per-minute water pumping capacity, all-wheel drivetrain, 360-degree camera system and state-of-the-art LED emergency scene lighting package. The vehicle was also built to include the most up-to-date safety features, and doubles as a tribute to longtime Red White & Blue firefighter Todd "TJ" Johnson, who died of cancer in 2015.

Friends of the Dillon Ranger District Upcoming Events

Wednesday, July 6

Forestry in the Field Interpretive Hike, Rainbow Lake in Frisco, 10 a.m. to noon

Friday, July 8

Dillon Farmers Market, Downtown Dillon, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Saturday, July 9

FDRD/FENW Joint Trailhead Hosting Day (non-volunteer event), 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.