Volunteer effort will tackle Hanging Lake Trail work in September | PostIndependent.com

Volunteer effort will tackle Hanging Lake Trail work in September

Dale Shrull
Post Independent Staff
Glenwood Springs, CO Colorado
Kelley Cox Post Independent

GLENWOOD CANYON, Colorado – With more than 80,000 hikers a year trudging up the Hanging Lake Trail, there comes a time when trail maintenance is required.

On Sept. 17-19, the trail will be closed so two volunteer groups can work on the popular trail.

Volunteers for Outdoor Colorado – a Front Range group – and Roaring Fork Outdoor Volunteers will be in charge of the work, White River National Forest Eagle/Holy Cross District Ranger Dave Neely said.

Pat Thrasher, public affairs officer for the White River National Forest, said that bringing in experienced third-party volunteer groups like these is essential to a smooth and effective operation.

“They have an internal training program for their volunteers. We are able to get more done [by] these types of organizations,” he added.

Neely said that there are a number of sections on the trail where rock work needs to be done by skilled workers, making it imperative to use groups that provide that kind of expertise.

With any trail, especially those on a slope, keeping water off the trail and limiting erosion is the goal, Neely said.

“Water is the enemy, and getting water off the treadway is the key,” Neely said.

Crew leaders from the volunteer groups have already logged the trail and determined the trouble spots they will target, Neely said.

The main priority areas will be the switchback sections, including one around the 1-mile mark that Neely calls a “major challenge spot.”

Neely said that the volunteers will get as much work done as possible over those three days, then the trail will reopen.

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