Boggy Draw construction closures, limited access planned for November
Dolores, Colo., Oct. 30, 2023 —The Dolores Ranger District will be expanding the Boggy Draw parking lot beginning Nov. 1. The project north of Dolores includes construction of new trailer parking and full-sized vehicle spaces as well as gravel, drainage, fencing and cattle guard work. Site preparation for a new bathroom facility will also occur during construction.
The parking lot and access to the Boggy Draw and Maverick trailheads will be temporarily closed for up to two weeks during construction. Visitors should also expect short term road closures during construction activities. An alternative parking location 1/2 mile east of the construction zone is available off Forest Service Road 527. Alternate access points to the Boggy Draw and Maverick trails are available via FSR 527. See the attached map for alternative parking and trail access points.
For information on current conditions and recreation opportunities on the San Juan National Forest, call (970) 247-4874, visit the forest website, or follow us on social media (Twitter and Facebook).
Maintaining trails is a lot of work! Thankfully the Forest Service has funding for a number of open positions. Please share with others to help fill these positions!
Trail Maintenance Hand Crew
Trail Equipment Operations Crew
Trail Maintenance Hand Crew-Permanent
Positions will be advertised on www.USAjobs.gov . When applying to this position search using keyword Forestry Technician and location as Dolores, CO when job announcement is posted.
Please call or Email for more information about these positions and how to apply: Chris Bouton
Trails Manager Dolores Ranger District San Juan National Forest Service
Fall is an amazing time of year in Southwest Colorado! The night temperatures become increasingly brisk. The smell of roasted green chilis excite the palate. Hunting trips for game and firewood fill one's free time. And of course, the Aspen leaves burst with color! Below are some of the best trails near Mancos for enjoying the Fall foliage.
Big Al Trail
Reports of vicious sunflowers attacking innocent bikers on the trails at the Aqueduct trail system outside of Mancos were made to MTG's Chair during the Mancos Brewfest. So, the "Sunflower Brigade", Howard, Erin, Andy & Don from Mancos Trails Group went out on August 24 sufficiently armed to attack the enemy. We can now report that the Aqueduct trails are flowing smoothly again. Most of the sunflowers and other woody weeds that were overhanging the trails in numerous locations have been removed. Fewer handlebar grabs, scrapes and bruises mean the riding is fun again.
Just before the monsoon rains began in mid-August, five MTG volunteers backpacked up into the La Platas to set up a spike camp in upper Bear Creek Basin. It was a nearly three mile hike to camp, but it was worth it! Despite rain in the forecast, there wasn’t much rain and the wildflowers were spectacular!
Over the next two days, we got a lot of trail work done and the Sharkstooth Trail is looking good! We put in six new grade reversals/drains on the West headwall and switchbacks of upper Bear Creek Basin. We also conducted maintenance on about 30 existing drainage structures over three miles between the two passes, and mitigated a small landslide across the trail.
Overall our 2023 spike camp was a big success! We all had a lot of fun, enjoyed great camaraderie, and got some important work done, all in one of the most scenic areas in SW Colorado. Thanks, MTG volunteers! Special thanks goes to Robert Meyer for organizing this special volunteer event.
Also a big shout out goes to the Dolores Ranger District (DRD) for funding the Southwest Conservation Corps (SCC) crews during the summer of 2021. Several crews spent over two weeks camped in Upper Bear Creek Basin. They installed a couple dozen rock lined drain structures, rerouted the trail away from wetlands, and built the trail up onto a causeway through another wetland. All these improvements set MTG trail adopters up to be able to take care of this scenic segment with relative ease. Thanks DRD and SCC!
This summer MTG began hosting afternoon/evening work sessions one Monday and Wednesday on the Blue Jay Trail at Chicken Creek. They've provided a new opportunity to give back to the trails you love so much, and so far it’s been a huge success.
Thanks to everyone who has been coming to these sessions! So far we've gotten a lot done thanks to 150 volunteer hours! All the fords of the ditches were mucked out and rocks re-laid. All were rideable as of July 26th. We completed initial construction of 28 new drainage features on the Blue Jay Trail. The past work day we constructed a short trail realignment at the lower rollover cattle guard.
There’s still a chance to come out and join us! September sessions are slated for Monday 9/11 and Wednesday 9/27. We will revisit all the new drainages and tune them up for Fall. Most need to be widened and deepened somewhat.
Bring your normal PPE: closed toed shoes, long pants, eye protection, sun protection, snacks and lots of water
With the heavy winter snow, recent rains and the eager anticipation of Monsoon season the wildflowers in the high country are simply incredible! Activities like wildflower viewing, birdwatching, picnics and other outdoor adventures are a great way to enjoy our beautiful public lands! The photos below were taken during a recent bikepacking adventure along the Mancos Spur Trail. Remember to practice 'Leave No Trace' principles to ensure the flowers are there for others to enjoy as well!
At MTG's first participation in the Mancos Days parade our big hair, bright colors and high energy earned us a 2nd place award! We're pretty proud of that and hope that the publicity will encourage more people to come out for trail work and to enjoy the many local trails near Mancos. In case you needed any convincing, we have a lot of fun out on the trails.
If you've enjoyed the trails at Aqueduct recently you've seen the new signs! Since we began building the Aqueduct Trail system three years ago, we kept getting requests for better signage. Now that the trail system is complete, the wait is over and you can view important information like direction of travel, mileage, 'you are here' and more at each intersection. Although the MTG website features beautiful trail maps created by board member Howard Kalnitz and we've updated popular trail apps; having trail signs at each intersection is a huge improvement and really enhances the experience for trail users. A huge 'Thank you' of appreciation to the BLM for funding and installing the improved signs!