The Welch Ditch is located just west of downtown Golden in Clear Creek Canyon. An historic landmark in Jefferson County, the irrigation system was constructed in the 1870’s and primary access has been closed since 2013 due to structural damage and rock falls. Jeffco Open Space is currently undergoing the process to convert the Welch Ditch into a trail that will connect the Peaks to Plains Trail with the Chimney Gulch Trail. Planning and design will begin in 2017.
How is the Peaks to Plains Trail being constructed? Often, as you’ll see in the videos and pictures below, it’s one boulder at a time.
Despite the wet spring and high water, construction of the Peaks to Plains Trail is well underway. This is a really exciting time for both counties as many years of hard work have taken place to get to this point. After months of revising plans, and hours going over designs, we are finally getting a feel for what the trail corridor looks like. While we are eager to move construction along as quickly as possible, the counties have tasked the construction team with taking a surgical approach to construction. This is no easy task in a steep, rocky canyon environment. As such, the team is working slowly and methodically to keep the construction corridor narrow. This allows minimal impact on the native vegetation and enables us to save as many trees as possible.
Makings of the first wall
The videos below are construction of the first major wall on the trail using a track hoe.