Prehm Ranch walk-through Wednesday |

Prehm Ranch walk-through Wednesday

A public walk-through and bike-through of County Road 163 through Prehm Ranch is set for 5 p.m. on Wednesday, Aug. 14.

To join the group, meet at the Glenwood Springs rodeo grounds, near the airport.

“We want to see its potential for a trail corridor,” said Andrew McGregor, Glenwood Springs community development director.

The walk-through is hosted by the Glenwood Springs River Commission and the Carbondale Trail Committee.

The 1.5-mile stretch of the road has always been considered private, but after the sale of the Prehm Ranch to developers, Garfield County officials learned that the county holds a 60-foot-wide right-of-way through the ranch.

If the stretch were opened to the public, walkers, runners, cyclists and horseback riders could travel between Glenwood Springs and Carbondale on the west side of the Roaring Fork River, away from the highway.

The access is opposed by Marlin Colorado Ltd., the developers of Prehm Ranch, and by some residents of Westbank.

But other Westbank residents and valley trail activists see the stretch as a vital link in creating a valuable recreational corridor for the public.

“The River Commission is very supportive of the potential for creating a trail down through there,” McGregor said. “We’ve been talking about this for so many years. It’s interesting that it is perhaps coming to fruition now.”

Glenwood Springs Mayor Don Vanderhoof has also come out in support of opening the stretch for nonmotorized public travel.

The walk-through comes a few days before the Garfield County Commissioners reopen a public hearing on the subject of a proposed settlement to a lawsuit over the road.

The hearing is slated for 10:15 a.m. on Monday, Aug. 19, at the Courthouse Plaza, across Eighth Street from the county courthouse.

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