Copper Mountain trail projects draws statewide volunteer group
Power in numbers will be the name of the game for a large-scale trail project scheduled for this weekend.
A statewide volunteer organization is coming to Summit County and they’re looking for locals help on a two-day trail maintenance project with an overnight camping option.
Volunteers of Colorado (VOC) is a Denver-based nonprofit that works with landowners across the state, motivating people to become active stewards of Colorado’s natural resources. This weekend, they’re teaming up with the Summit County Open Space and Trails Department to work on the Clinton Reservoir Trail.
About 75 volunteers will be travelling to work on the trail and have the option to camp at Copper Mountain. The volunteer opportunity will include two days of work constructing a new trail and addressing maintenance issues with the current pathway.
Although there is a lot of work to be done, volunteers can go at their own pace and take breaks whenever they need, VOC project manager Dan Williams said. Participants will have the opportunity to learn technical aspects about trail maintenance if they choose, and will have a great time meeting new people, he said. No prior skills are needed to participate.
“We try to make it a fun, rewarding experience with volunteers leaving feeling like they accomplished something,” said Volunteers for Outdoor Colorado communications spokesperson Andrea Nelson.
Anytime volunteers can create sustainable access to a popular destination, they achieve two important things, Williams said.
“First, you give people a chance to experience their favorite recreational activities,” he said. “Second, when you build a trail correctly, you protect the resources those people are accessing.”
The Clinton Reservoir trail is a popular hiking trail and fishing spot in Summit County, offering scenic views of the water and surrounding mountain ranges. The destination’s ease of access from Highway 91 adds to its demand, project organizers said. The trail may be popular, but it is by no means sustainable, they said.
“The path goes through sensitive riparian zones, and has problems with erosion,” Williams said. “To make it a better, more sustainable trail it will take a lot of work,” he said.
After working on Saturday, volunteers will have the opportunity to unwind and get to know each other better. Local musician Drew Reges will be playing at the campsite at Copper Mountain on Saturday night.
“Not only is this an opportunity to give back to the community by volunteering, but this will be a fun project with optional free camping, meals and giveaways,” said Summit County Open Space & Trails Department project organizer Katie Kent.
“By improving the trail system and reducing the erosion which has been occurring, the community will be able to continue to enjoy Clinton Reservoir for years to come,” she said.
Volunteers interested in participating in the Clinton Reservoir Trail Restoration can register online at the Volunteer of Colorado website http://www.voc.org and call the organization at 303-715-1010 for specific details.
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