The trees are budding out, snow is retreating up the mountainside, and thoughts are turning to new adventures on Pikes Peak. A new season of stewardship on Pikes Peak is upon us. As the new president of Friends of the Peak I would like to introduce myself and describe some of the activities that FOTP will be involved with this year.
Carol Beckman has decided that it is time to step back and take a breather from leading our all-volunteer organization. With the board's approval she has passed the president's baton to me. Carol did a terrific job leading the group and I hope that I can come close to handling all of the things that she choreographed so well. Carol is no longer president but she will continue to be a project leader and crew leader for our projects in the coming year, and she will be an important member of our continuing efforts to complete the Ring the Peak trail. Thank you Carol for your dedication to Pikes Peak and the people that enjoy it so much.
I've been on the board of Friends of the Peak since 2011 and have served many different roles in the group. I am the primary trail designer for the group and, teaming up with other people, helped design the trails in the Pikes Peak South Slope area, the Dixon Trail in Cheyenne Mountain State Park, the Iron Mountain Trail in Manitou Springs, a proposed reroute for the Crags to Devil's Playground Trail on the west side of the peak. Prior to joining FOTP I was involved in many Volunteers for Outdoor Colorado projects around the state. In addition to trail work I also help deliver the annual Pikes Peak regional crew leader training. When I'm not working on FOTP projects you can typically find me hiking up a Colorado 14er, downhill skiing, or riding my mountain bike somewhere in the Rocky Mountain region.
The projects on our calendar for this year will be familiar to anyone who has volunteered with our group in the past. We will continue to do maintenance on the most popular trails in the area, including Saint Mary's Falls, Seven Bridges, Barr, Crags, and the South Slope. Environmental stewardship is part of our mission and we will be leading noxious weed removal projects. See our calendar below for a complete list of projects for this year.
FOTP will again help deliver crew leader training this year. If you have ever considered becoming a crew leader this is a great opportunity to learn the basics of being an effective crew leader. Go to the Pikes Peak Regional Crew Leader Training web page
for more information on the class. If you like working with people and enjoy the satisfaction of seeing a team repair or create great trails, then please consider becoming a crew leader.
The Ring the Peak trail has been getting a lot of recognition over the last year, with Governor Hickenlooper designating it as one of the 16 in 16
projects for the state. The Trails and Open Space Coalition has done a remarkable job of bringing attention to this project and has made RTP one of their top priorities. The Palmer Land Trust is also assisting with acquisition of right-of-way. Combining our trail building expertise with TOSC advocacy skills and the land management talent of the Palmer Land Trust has produced a team that is making significant headway on the RTP project. Expect to hear more about the RTP in upcoming newsletters.
I would also like to take a moment to thank two board members for their service to FOTP. Jim Strub and Bob Bunch have contributed countless hours to FOTP since the inception of the group 20 years ago. While no longer board members I'm sure that we will still be welcoming the two of them to FOTP activities. Jim Strub is still our main man for putting together and distributing this newsletter.
President, Friends of the Peak