Trail Study Area Implementation
The Eldorado Mountain / Doudy Draw (EM/DD) TSA Plan was completed in the fall 2006 and identified new trails, resource protection measures, trail improvements, and recreational opportunities in the TSA.
Download the Doudy Draw Eldorado Mountain trail brochure3.36 MB
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Efforts to Protect Natural Resources
TSA plans establish strategies to improve the visitor experience while protecting natural and cultural resources.
The EM/DD TSA Plan identified the need for a seasonal ground-nesting bird closure in the eastern part of the TSA where high-quality xeric grasslands occur with a high concentration of grassland nesting birds. This seasonal closure extends to grasslands east of Highway 93. Lindsay Pond is closed to public access to protect the native fish population and aid in the restoration of northern leopard frogs, a state species of concern.
Special regulations for Spring Brook Loop Trail and the off-trail permit requirements in Eldorado Mountain HCA help protect resources and minimize recreational impacts.
Spring Brook Loop
Spring Brook Loop is a multiple use trail.
Can I hike along the canal?
The Goshawk Ridge Trail in the Eldorado Mountain Habitat Conservation Area (HCA) is open to hikers and equestrians. Dogs and bicycles are not allowed on this trail. Off-trail travel in the Eldorado Mountain HCA requires an off-trail permit. Visitors remaining on trail can enjoy the HCA without a permit. A climbing access trail for Mickey Mouse Wall has been designated and signed providing climbing access without the need of an off-trail permit.
The Flatirons Vista Trail and the wheel chair accessible Prairie Vista Trail out of Flatirons Vista Trailhead are multiple use trails which require everyone enjoying the trails to be mindful and courteous to fellow visitors.
Doudy Draw Improvements
The paved section of Doudy Draw Trail from the trailhead up to Community Ditch has been replaced with a raised crusher fine surface to improve the wheel chair accessibility of this section of trail and the physical sustainability of the trail. The small picnic area near the restroom has also been refurbished. New picnic benches, an interpretive sign and the nearby restroom provide nice amenities for a relaxing stop.
A reroute of Doudy Draw Trail south of Community Ditch was completed in 2008. The reroute reduces the number of stream crossings and impacts to the riparian habitat, and is more physically sustainable which reduces long-term maintenance concerns.
A variety of monitoring and research activities are underway to guide land management actions that protect natural resources and provide a good visitor experience.
OSMP is monitoring wildlife use of the area, on-trail travel by equestrians, bicyclists and dog walkers, checking the level of visitor conflict, measuring changes to trail condition and keeping an eye on undesignated trails. OSMP will interpret the monitoring results and determine the most appropriate responses that will protect resources and ensure a quality experience for visitors to the area.
Follow the link below to view a summary of monitoring projects underway in the EM/DD TSA, including:
Open Space and Mountain Parks' intent is to promote and accommodate sustainable visitor activities while protecting the resources.
A visitor survey was administered during summer 2009 on the Spring Brook Loop Trail. Visitors answered questions about any recreational conflict they experienced that day or on previous visits because of their interactions with other visitors. Monitoring results, standards for recommending adaptive responses, and actions to maintain low levels of conflict help us provide opportunities for all visitors to enjoy a shared use of the trail.
Two indicators were used to assess if management actions should be implemented to address conflict and one indicator was slightly outside of the collaboratively established standard.
OSMP is implementing several actions including new education and outreach efforts and adding a limited number of speed reducing trail features to reduce recreational conflict on Spring Brook Loop.
Below is a summary of survey results. You can also download the detailed conflict monitoring report.
In spring 2009, OSMP conducted observational monitoring to evaluate visitor compliance with on-trail and dog regulation requirements on Spring Brook Loop Trail. Visitor compliance levels were compared to established ranges of acceptability (compliance standards). Compliance levels for some activities were not within the acceptable range. OSMP met with community groups to discuss adaptive responses to improve compliance. One adaptive response was to place informational signs at the trail advising visitors of monitoring results and reiterating desired goals for compliance. Monitoring was repeated in 2010.
The compliance results for both 2009 and 2010 are now available in a monitoring report below. The report also includes a discussion of the results, management considerations and recommendations.
Spring Brook Loop Compliance Monitoring ReportExecutive Summary 37.90 Kb
Spring Brook Loop Compliance Monitoring Report 2.45 Mb
OSMP will be reviewing the results of the compliance monitoring with the Open Space Board of Trustees (OSBT) and determining the next steps.
In 2010, OSMP completed three years of monitoring associated with two new trails, Spring Brook Loop and Goshawk Ridge in the EM/DD TSA. These monitoring efforts included projects that evaluated the sustainability of designated trails under new visitor activities and an assessment of the reduction in undesignated trails in the surrounding area. This document presents the results of three related monitoring projects:
For the three projects, staff measured trail tread conditions at 100-foot intervals along designated and undesignated trails prior to the opening of new trails for visitor travel (baseline data) and at least annually for two years afterwards.
Results will be used by OSMP managers in their evaluation of the effectiveness of visitor management, trail management and trail closure strategies at improving upon or maintaining desired conditions described in the EM/DD TSA Plan. Results will also be used to inform adaptive management responses as necessary.
Spring Brook Loop Compliance Monitoring Report
OSMP will be reviewing the results of the compliance monitoring with the Open Space Board of Trustees (OSBT) and determining the next steps. Check the OSBT Agenda page for more information on timing of the board's review.
EM/DD TSA Monitoring Plan
Concern about unintended impacts to wildlife, native vegetation, and visitor experience associated with the construction of new trails in the EM/DD TSA prompted development of a monitoring plan to guide adaptive management as the trails were completed and being used by visitors. The Eldorado Mountain/Doudy Draw TSA Monitoring Plan (3.31 Mb) integrates comments received from the Board and community members.
The Board memo on EM/DD TSA Monitoring including the response to public comments is posted below.
Last Updated on Wednesday, 16 January 2013 11:59