Horse Gulch Blog

Watchdogging for the greater Durango area

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City of Durango staff misleading public on Overend Mtn Park Conservation Easements

27 Mar 2020 | Posted by Adam Howell. No Comments  

City of Durango staff are misinforming the public about the conservation easements for Overend Mountain Park by inaccurately saying that they prohibit motorized vehicles. Contradicting the city’s misinformation are the conservation easements for Overend Mountain Park itself, which lacks any language about motorized vehicles. Alarmingly, staff presents the misinformation at board meetings about how to manage electrical assisted bicycles on Durango’s natural surface trails. Overend Mountain Park conservation easements required by GOCO Over decades, most of Durango’s open space was acquired after the city applied…

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Conservation easements held for City of Durango open space lands, view documents here

19 Mar 2020 | Posted by Adam Howell. No Comments  

This post contains as many of the conservation easements that are held for city of Durango lands as I could find. For now, the conservation easements in this post includes those for Horse Gulch, Dalla Mountain Park, Overend Mountain Park, Bread Express and Oxbow Park and Preserve. The attached Baseline Documentation for the Horse Gulch parcels does contain a conservation easement at the end of each one. Most noteworthy is the conservation easement for Overend Mountain Park, which does not appear to prohibit motorized vehicles.…

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Discrimination against e-bikes called out by representative of disabled seniors

13 Mar 2020 | Posted by Adam Howell. No Comments  

“Discrimination comes to mind.” Those were the words of Ellen Stein, the Senior Disabled/Disadvantaged Community Representative on the City of Durango’s Multimodal Advisory Board. Stein was responding to the Natural Lands Board’s suggestion of banning electric-assisted bikes from all of Durango’s existing natural surface trails. In particular, Stein was expressing her concerns with the City’s Multimodal Board, the Parks and Recreation Board and the Natural Lands Board. City staff has tasked the three boards with helping to draft policy for electric bikes on Durango’s open…

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More photos of arches that you’ve probably never seen before in Aztec, New Mexico

8 Mar 2020 | Posted by Adam Howell. No Comments  

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Iphone 7+ Video: backcountry tour, Cement Fill, Dec. 29, 2019

1 Jan 2020 | Posted by Adam Howell. No Comments  

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Video of recent downhilling on the splitboard

27 Dec 2019 | Posted by Adam Howell. No Comments  

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Dead upon arrival: directional up trail killed without due public process of city boards

25 Dec 2019 | Posted by Adam Howell. No Comments  

Durango’s Parks and Recreation Director Cathy Metz killed Trails 2000’s proposal for a directional trail in Overend Mountain Park without letting the Natural Lands Preservation Advisory Board vote on it. It would have been a new uphill-directional trail for people that are heading to the top of Star Wars Trail. Star Wars Trail is not officially designated as directional, however, despite numerous letters and public comments that were made to the city in favor of encouraging downward directional traffic there. A few residents in the…

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Video: DFPD Chief Hal Doughty, wildfire mitigation proposals, Horse Gulch & Overend Mtn Park

12 Dec 2019 | Posted by Adam Howell. No Comments  



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Public comments, joint board meeting, for & against allowing e-bikes on dirt trails

5 Dec 2019 | Posted by Adam Howell. No Comments  

Public comments were the most interesting part of the recent joint board meeting where the idea of allowing electric assisted bicycles on Durango’s natural-surface trails was discussed. The city’s Natural Lands Preservation Advisory Board, Parks and Recreation Advisory Board and Multi-Modal Advisory Board met to talk about the idea of allowing e-bikes on trails in Durango for a trial period to see how there use is perceived by the public and what impacts they may have. Before the public comments were given, city staff provided…

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Allowing E-Bikes on natural surface trails to be the subject of city meeting Wednesday

18 Nov 2019 | Posted by Adam Howell. No Comments  

Whether e-bikes should be allowed on Durango’s natural surface trails will be the topic of discussion at a joint meeting of three city boards on Wednesday (11/20/19). Public comments will be taken later in the meeting. The Natural Lands Preservation Advisory Board, the Parks and Recreation Advisory Board and the Multi-Modal Advisory Board will meet together at the Durango Community Recreation Center to have a study session from 5:00 to 6:00 p.m. Starting at 6:00 p.m., a regular joint advisory board meeting will begin and…

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New BLM draft Environmental Assessment to make criminals out of mountain bikers

20 Oct 2019 | Posted by Adam Howell. No Comments  

A new preliminary Environmental Assessment for transportation and access to BLM lands in southwest Colorado may criminalize mountain biking on parts of Hogsback Trail and Perins Gulch Trail where it was previously allowed for decades. This preliminary Environmental Assessment for Transportation and Access Planning in the Tres Rios Field Office will set the stage for the BLM to have more justification to enforce the bike ban based on their Resource Management Plan. In 2015, a Resource Management Plan prohibited mechanized travel on the trails, and…

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Tons of trash from county homeless camp removed by volunteers

17 Oct 2019 | Posted by Adam Howell. No Comments  

A group of about 50 people picked up enough trash to fill a 30-yard dumpster last Sunday. The effort was organized by Marsha Porter Norton, La Plata Sheriff’s Department and Trails 2000.

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On Horse Gulch Road, is a ban on e-bikes grounded in law?

14 Oct 2019 | Posted by Adam Howell. No Comments  

Don’t let the new “No E-bikes” sign at the gate to Horse Gulch Road mislead you. Electrical assisted bicycles are allowed on the road that’s in the county’s jurisdiction right behind that sign, according to Megan Graham, La Plata County’s Public Information Officer. Electric bikes are only allowed on the non-maintained road for a short distance, however. That’s because the road goes from the county to the city’s jurisdiction a couple hundred feet past the gate. In May of 2016, the city adopted Ordinance 2016-10…

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Electric bikes no longer defined as motor vehicles by Department of Interior

12 Sep 2019 | Posted by Adam Howell. No Comments  

People may soon be allowed to ride their electric bikes on Animas Mountain or Grandview Ridge Bureau of Land Management trails following an Order issued by the U.S. Secretary of the Interior that excludes e-bikes from the definition of “motorized vehicles” and “off-road vehicles.” –issued by Interior Secretary David Bernhardt on August 29, 2019–was intended to simplify and unify the regulation of e-bikes on Federal lands that are managed by the Department of the Interior. It was also intended to decrease regulatory burden, the Order…

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The trail pooping hierarchy, as illustrated by Pedaluppartydown

30 Aug 2019 | Posted by Adam Howell. No Comments  

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GoPro video, splitboarding Wolf Creek Pass

20 Jun 2019 | Posted by Adam Howell. No Comments  

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GoPro Video: Riding Hogs Back Trail, Skid Ridge and Slime Gulch

11 Jun 2019 | Posted by Adam Howell. No Comments  

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Scenes of riding black dirt on Raider Ridge

19 May 2019 | Posted by Adam Howell. No Comments  

Hope we get to ride together again soon.

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BLM suggests criminalizing mountain biking on Hogs Back Trail, Skid Ridge+Slime Gulch

4 May 2019 | Posted by Adam Howell. No Comments  

Bike travel would be allowed for retrieving dead animals during hunting seasons, but never for recreation or transportation on popular local BLM trails near Perins Peak under a Transportation and Access Plan that’s currently open to public comments. More specifically, mechanized travel would be prohibited on parts of Hogs Back Trail, Slime Gulch and all of Skid Ridge to comply with the Tres Rios Field Office (TRFO) Resource Management Plan (RMP), according to language in the Transportation and Access Plan. Also of concern for cyclists…

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Sign petition to city to exclude $50 dollar sandwich board sign permitting fee

31 Mar 2019 | Posted by Adam Howell. No Comments  

The new regulations of sandwich board signs of businesses on Main Avenue goes too far with a $50 dollar Revocable Encroachment Permit. Fees that Main Avenue entrepreneurs already pay for business licenses should go towards the regulation and permitting of small portable signs. Please scroll down, read the petition, and consider signing it. After signing the petition and opening your confirmation email, your signature will be posted and a letter will be sent to Durango City Council and Colleen OBrien. If the confirmation email doesn’t…

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