The Project

Jeffco Open Space and Clear Creek County Open Space have partnered to build a 4-mile segment of the Peaks to Plains Trail along Clear Creek and US Highway 6 in Clear Creek Canyon. The vision for the Peaks to Plains Trail is of a 65-mile off-highway opportunity to travel from the Continental Divide at the Eisenhower Tunnel to the confluence of the South Platte River in Adams County.

P2P Trail Construction 2016-2017

Click the map to download the PDF for a more detailed view of the scope of the 4-mile section.

The first segment opened in 2016.

The project is aided by a $4.6 million grant from Great Outdoors Colorado, awarded in 2012. Questions or comments? Please contact the Project Team at 303-569-9972 or P2PTrail@PublicInfoTeam.com. You can also sign up for the mailing list through P2PTrail@PublicInfoTeam.com.

72 thoughts on “The Project

    • Scott Evans, it’s tough to give you a firm estimate as much is dependent on the weather this winter. Since the majority of the trail is on the opposite side of the creek, high water makes access across the creek difficult. The fall and winter months, when the water levels are low, provide the only opportunities to get equipment and materials to some areas. That said, with good weather this winter, we are hopeful to have the trail completed from the western end, east to Mayhem Gulch by the fall of 2015.

      • P2P, copy at top of page indicates a 2016 completion date for this section. I see the bridges are going in. Do you think Clear Creek Canyon Road will be open to bike traffic by July 2016?

  1. I love the idea of a Peaks to Plains trail, but all the information that I can find is only about the 6 mile segment currently being built. Where can I find information about the entire trail?

    • We don’t know of a website that covers the entire trail as a project. But the Peaks to Plains Trail is projected to connect the Continental Divide at the Eisenhower Tunnel to the confluence of Clear Creek and the South Platte River in Adams County.

      • Thanks for that information. Are there any estimates for a time frame on the completion of the entire trail? I’d love to keep people updated about it on Trailsnet.com.

      • Surprisingly, we couldn’t find information on a time frame for the entire Peaks to Plains Trail. When it becomes available we will be sure to post about it here.

  2. When this 6 mile segment is complete will bikes be allowed on US 6? Specifically will I be able to use US 6 + this trails segment to descend from Idaho Springs to Golden?

    • HI Brendan,
      Unfortunately, the answer is no. US 6 is closed to bicycles because the five tunnels are too narrow to safely accommodate both vehicles and bikes. This project is part of the solution though. The greater Peaks to Plains Trail will create a safe bicycle route from Loveland Pass down to the confluence of Clear Creek and the South Platte River. Currently, the major missing piece is Clear Creek Canyon. This segment will complete approximately 6 of the 16 miles through the Canyon. Once the entire Canyon trail is completed, it will connect you to Idaho Springs and beyond. Until then though, there is no legal bicycle route through Clear Creek Canyon. I’m sorry, but you’ll have to wait a little longer to make it from Idaho Springs to Golden.

  3. Who is leading the effort to plan/fund the remaining 10 miles to complete the trail from Golden to Idaho Springs? Is there any way the public can help with justification/motivation?

    • That’s a great question Bruce. If I can lend any assistance in informing/educating the public via Trailsnet.com, please let me know. This is a great project, and I hope to see it continue moving forward. It will be great to have it connected to the upcoming Colorado Front Range Trail.

    • Bruce,
      Thank you for your question and for your support of this project. First I’d like to share with you all of the players and pieces involved. The canyon is part Jeffco Open Space property managed as Clear Creek Canyon Park and part Clear Creek County Open Space beyond the county line. Within the canyon, the Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) holds and manages the highway right of way, and the creek authority lies with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE).
       
      The stretch of trail through the canyon is a momentous undertaking. A feasibility study was completed in 2006 and since then, the construction costs have dramatically increased over time. Additionally, as we move from feasibility study to construction documents for the trail, the alignment and structures in that feasibility study can change drastically. This is truly a case of taking one step at a time; motivation is not an issue.
       
      Yes, public support is critical to the success of the trail, as well as partnerships with Great Outdoors Colorado, CDOT, USACE, US Fish and Wildlife, recreation groups that use the canyon, and other upstream and downstream partners.  We encourage participation in future public events related to planning for this project , as well as following and sharing this blog.
       
      To date, there are partnerships in place with organizations and agencies that have contributed to the funding and development of this project and we hope to continue these partnerships to achieve the objectives of this unique and exciting recreation amenity.

      Thank you,
      Scot Grossman
      Jefferson County Open Space

  4. Hi! This is a wonderful and much-needed connector to some of the best road routes in the front range. Does this path mean that Douglas Mtn Road is now accessible from the Floyd Hill area without having to go the long way around through Central City and Black Hawk?

    • Hello, yes when the Peaks to Plains Trail is complete, you will be able to ride your bike on this trail, alongside the US 6 portion between I-70 and Clear Creek Canyon. That portion of the Peaks to Plains Trail will be built by Clear Creek County. The current phase of the project will not make this connection, but future phases will.

  5. Not really super thrilled about a paved trail being put through one of the most beautiful canyons in Colorado. Bicyclists already have the ROAD. It makes me super sad every time I look down and see that gleaming white concrete. Nature eh…

    • I don’t get people who have a problem with a 12′ wide path that encourages safe, pollution-free recreation and transportation but seem to have no problem with 30′ wide asphalt roads that promote pollution, obesity & fatal collisions. And I disagree that bicyclists already have the road. Multi-ton, speeding cars being driven by distracted drivers have the road. Smart bicyclists have trails… but not nearly enough of them.

    • Cycling on US 6 is banned through Clear Creek Canyon because the tunnels are too narrow to accommodate bikes and cars. So no, bikes don’t already have the road.

    • Thank you for your comments. As bicycles and pedestrians are not permitted on the portion of US 6 through Clear Creek Canyon, the Peaks to Plains Trail will be a new opportunity for many trail users. Our project team has worked to ensure as minimal disturbance to the surrounding land as possible, and values the importance of a natural setting. The 10’ wide concrete trail is not completely finished – it will be stained a brown color which will greatly cut down on the contrast of the trail to the natural surroundings.

    • You are being uninformed: Bikes are currently NOT ALLOWED on Clear Creek Canyon. When this is done we will be able to be there, and out of the way of cars. If there is already a road adding a bike path is not really that much more impact!

      • I never said they were allowed in Clear Creek Canyon. I’ve been going there for awhile now, I’m fully aware there are no bicycles allowed on the road. I was talking about the HUNDREDS OF THOUSANDS OF MILES of other roads you can ride your bicycle down. Doesn’t matter. Nothing I can do about it. I just wish they’d quit acting like this whole project wasn’t for cyclists and cyclists only. I already have to deal with them breaking all the rules of the road, now they’re in my zen space as well.

  6. who says I don’t have a problem with 30′ wide roads? If it were up to me there’d be a nice wide dirt trail and no asphalt to speak of. I don’t have an issue with safe, pollution-free recreation. I have a problem with the path being paved and mostly artificial. What’s going to happen the first time a cyclist come barreling down that smooth white path at 40 mph and wads it up right into a person walking the trail? And share the road, share the rules right? The first time I see a cyclist share the rules, I’ll gladly share the road. It’s a two way street. No pun intended.

    • It sounds like you and I agree on more than we disagree. I totally agree w/ you about sharing the road and that cyclists should share the responsibility for making roads safe. I also agree that cyclists going 40 mph (or anything over 20 mph) on a path are unsafe. The only part I disagree w/ you about is the surface of the path. A dirt or gravel path is really only good for hikers & mountain bikers whereas a paved/concrete path opens it up for hybrids, recumbents, tandems, inline skates, road bikes, stand-up vehicles and, most importantly, handicapped people who also have a right to enjoy the beautiful outdoors. Having said that, I certainly don’t think all paths should be paved, but a major one like this that serves as a recreational path, a connector path, a commuting path, an exercise path and a way for cyclists/pedestrians to legally navigate this canyon (since the tunnels forbid bikes/pedestrians) definitely needs to be built as a multi-purpose path (i.e. concrete or asphalt). Anyway, thanks for sharing/clarifying your views Casey.

  7. So how do you get from the end of the 6 mile segment of the Clear Creek trail down to Golden? Will this connect to other trail projects outside of the canyon? I just don’t see how you are going to get all the way from Loveland to Golden, when there only is a 6 mile segment in clear creek canyon. What am I missing?

    • Thank you for your question. This 6-mile segment of the project is part of the greater 65-mile Peaks to Plains Trail that will connect the confluence of the South Platte River and Clear Creek. The majority of this trail is complete. The Clear Creek Canyon portion is the major missing link. This 6-mile segment is the first of many segments necessary to complete the canyon. Once this is complete, Jefferson County will have approximately 8 miles to connect to Golden, and Clear Creek County will have approximately 3 miles to connect to the current trail at the junction of I-70 and US6. 

      • So is there a schedule as far as when Jeffco and Clear Creek County will make their connections? Will they be in the canyon along the river (similar to what is installed so far). Thanks!

  8. Due to the complexity of the project and the amount of work still to be done, we do not have a schedule for completing the trail through the entirety of Clear Creek Canyon. We also do not have trail alignments for anything other than what we are currently working on. When we have more information we will be sure to share it here, so stay tuned.

  9. Based on the trail building construction that has occurred immediately upstream of the intersection of Hwy 119 and US 6, it appears that parts of this project are having a substantial impact on the whitewater rafting and kayaking recreational qualities of Clear Creek. What steps are being taken to protect what is left of the natural canyon, particularly just upstream of the bridge east of Tunnel #2? How is the trail alignment going to affect the iconic “Rigor Mortis” rapid upstream of the first bridge over Clear Creek, when traveling west from Golden? Although the riverbed has been altered for years from the road grades, the natural high water events and ice flows have carved a small channel through the old blast rock, and created some of the finest whitewater kayaking opportunities near the Denver area. Safer pedestrian access will be welcomed by the river recreation community, and I hope that the design and construction of the trail is thoughtful about the impact to the river.

    • Hi Kyle,
      Thank you for your comments. The majority of construction immediately upstream of the intersection of Hwy 119 and US 6 is not a comparable representation of what the finished trail will look like in that area. What you primarily see here is a construction access route and not the finished trail. The width necessary for construction equipment needed to build the walls in this area is much wider than the finished trail width. We start at approximately 13 feet wide and as the equipment moves its way out, it shrinks the trail to its finished width of 8 feet. All of the sections of trail outside of this area will be 10 feet wide. We downsized this area with the river channel, rafters and kayakers specifically in mind.

      As for steps to protect the natural canyon, both Clear Creek County Open Space and Jefferson County Open Space have missions that revolve around protecting natural resources and providing nature-based experiences. Protecting the canyon and providing recreational access is at the core of every decision we make.

      The area around Tunnel 2 and the “Rigor Mortis” rapid is not within the scope of this segment of the project. This area will be addressed in future segments of the trail and at this point plans for this area are in a very conceptual state. The mission statements of the two Counties will continue to be front and center in all design decisions made in the future.

  10. It was my understanding that the trail was ultimately to stretch from DIA to Glenwood Springs. Is this not correct?

  11. I agree with Casey in that it make me sad to see so much concrete going in along such a beautiful canyon. It also make me sad to see the amount of money time and effort being spent on this unnecessary project. How is concrete making the canyon beautiful or helping the majority of Colorado citizens. I think Great Outdoors Colorado needs to fund projects that more people would use, not just the “better than thou” bicyclists. Maybe these bicyclists should be the ones footing the bill on these projects and moving them to another state would be helpful too. I am so sick and tired of bicyclists thinking that they can ride in the middle of the road and that motorists can just go around them. Just stay off the roads with no shoulders and start paying to ride on the roads if you want us share the road with you.

    • By your own logic – I think a bike path IS giving cyclists a way to “stay off the roads with no shoulders”. And in regards to a bunch of concrete in the canyon, what about all the concrete on the ROAD that goes through the canyon?

      You sound a little “better than thou” yourself.

      • Cyclist do pay taxes and I for one am really appreciative of this project. Can’t wait to ride it.

  12. Chastising people for their logic and then asking them why they aren’t complaining about something that has existed most probably before they were alive is a little curious to me.

    Again, I don’t have a problem with the trail. I have a problem with it being paved with chalk white concrete. What ever happened to putting forth some effort to get to somewhere beautiful? We don’t have to have full access to everything. Especially for cyclists, whom it seems this project is all about…

    • Paved and concrete trails are as much for handicapped access as they are for bikes. So when you say “We don’t have to have full access to everything,” my reply is, “Please have a little compassion for those who are different than you.”

      • you’re suggesting there will be handicapped people utilizing this trail?

        Look, I’m surely going to be labeled insensitive for this but c’mon man. It’s a nature trail that gains or loses a significant amount of elevation. Quit trying to act like this wasn’t done for cyclists and try to make me feel guilty in the process. No thought was given to the handicapped when planning this. Handicapped people deserve as much access as able bodied people, but you gotta use reason… Having handicapped access to mountain trails makes about as much sense as Braille on a drive up ATM.

      • You’re right on both counts Casey: Yes I am suggesting that there will be handicapped people utilizing this trail; and yes you will likely be labeled insensitive for your sadly misinformed views on the abilities of those who are different than you.

      • Casey, yes, as a person with a disability I am thrilled about this trail and having better access to the mountain and canyon scenery that you take for granted. I can’t wait to bring my handcycle or racing wheelchair out there to put in some good quality miles. Thanks for your concern, but people with disabilities to enjoy getting outside too, even if it’s not to the same extent as you.

  13. I have been visiting the canyon for over 6 years now primarily to fly fish Clear Creek which is a unique trout stream within a short drive of Denver. The damage I have noted to the stream side vegetation and in stream fish habitat in several areas of the stream is appalling. Who did an environmental impact study of this project? The combination of tree removal and stream bank rock structure has turned the south bank of the upper canyon from a virtual wilderness to an eye soar where the path runs close to the stream bank. I have noted a large quantity of silt in areas of the stream even after this years high water run off.

    God creates trout streams, men can only mess things up with their ill conceived “improvements”.

    • Gary,

      Thank you for your comment and we can appreciate your concern for the natural habitat in Clear Creek Canyon. This project did not require an Environmental Assessment or an Environmental Impact Statement because it is not federally controlled and there is no federal nexus. We are not using federal funds, we do not require federal licenses and the project is not being managed by the federal government. However, we were required to go through an extensive permitting process. Before construction began we needed permits from the US Fish and Wildlife Service, the US Army Corps of Engineers the Colorado Department of Transportation and Jefferson County. Additionally, Colorado Parks and Wildlife was consulted with to make sure fish habitat was not negatively impacted.

      The mission of Jeffco Open Space is rooted in land stewardship. This ethos is front and center in every project we work on, regardless of size. It is of the utmost importance to us that this trail is be placed and aligned in the most efficient manner possible, with the least amount of impact to the surrounding area. The design-build team in charge of this project was chosen for many reasons, but their philosophy and ability to use a surgical approach to minimize impacts to the natural area is one of their biggest strengths. This approach has been evidenced regularly in the project to date. We have frequently shifted the trail alignment to save large trees. In many cases we have moved the trail higher up the slope in order to keep the trail further away from the creek and leave as many trees along the creek as possible.

      The wet spring coupled with late snow brought near record high flows through the canyon, and with that quite a built of silt and debris. We have a permitted storm water management plan in place for this project that includes a significant amount of erosion control features to keep sediment out of the creek. These features are inspected regularly to make sure they are functioning appropriately and immediately replaced if they are not. Please know that our focus on stewardship extends into this and we take it seriously.

      This project is part of a larger project to connect 65 miles of trail of statewide significance. It will create a safe and beautiful passage through this canyon and will improve recreational opportunities for hikers, cyclists, kayakers and rafters, anglers, climbers prospectors and other outdoor recreation enthusiasts.

  14. Hikers, climbers, anglers, prospectors, rafters, and kayakers already have fantastic access to the canyon. I wish you guys would quit pretending this wasn’t all about cyclists.

  15. Unlike Janice and Casey, I think this access trail will help those with other interests gain better access to untapped recreational opportunities in the canyon. For instance fly fishermen and climbers will be able to get to areas that would previously have required bush whacking. I believe that this will have a beneficial impact by reducing impact to popular areas within the canyon. Simply put, the project’s goal may have been to create cycling opportunities within the canyon, but I think it will also benefit those with interests outside of cycling.

  16. I am a fan of multi-use recreational trails and believe this trail will be a huge asset to Colorado.
    This trail will be a big plus for hikers, fishermen, boaters and bikers.
    I recognize the challenges of financing and building a trail in a tight mountain canyon and understand that the whole trail can not be opened at once.

    But I see some serious issues when this section opens. Starting in the middle of a canyon
    that has VERY limited parking will encourage people to access the trail from points other than the legal parking. We will see both illegal (dangerous) parking and bikers accessing trail along the highway from Kermits. Also people will park up Highway 119 and ride down 119 to Clear Creek.

    The solution to this problem is to quickly finish the trail on the west end to Kermits / I-70 where there is both highway access and the potential for a large parking lot. I realize Clear Creek County has some funding issues, but making the west end of the trail a priority will be necessary
    to solving the problems created by “starting in the middle”. The completion to the west is both shorter (3 miles) and also can use the old railroad grade for about 2 miles, so it will be cheaper.
    It might be necessary to have a temporary section of trail with concrete barriers on the short section thru the narrow portion. Opening this section will also give access up to Loveland Ski area.

    Thanks to everyone involved in this project!

    • Thank you for your support of the trail. Both Clear Creek County and Jefferson County have been working to make this trail a reality for over a decade and are excited to open the first piece in 2016.

      Parking and providing safe access to the trail is of the utmost importance to us. There were many factors that went into deciding to start this project where we did. One of the major ones was taking advantage of the largest parking area in the entire canyon at Mayhem Gulch, mile marker 262.25. We are also currently looking into additional parking to provide safe access to the trail.

      Both counties are actively pursuing additional funds to complete the remaining sections of the canyon, both to the east and to the west.

      Thank you again for your encouragement. We hope to see you out there in 2016!

      • Thank you for your calm and intelligent responses! Internet forum’s often attract highly vocal people, while the majority of citizens are quietly very happy with the excellent work being done to make the state a better place to live.

  17. I don’t know any hikers or fisherman that are happy about this. Me being both, I hate concrete in my canyon. Hiking is not walking on a concrete path. Fisherman generally enjoy the outdoors without concrete paths. They keep pretending this is for other people besides cyclists and I find that laughable. y’all need to admit who and what this is for. This whole project makes me sad.

  18. This project really confuses me. A long stretch has been built in a canyon, with no connection to any point outside the canyon and only vague plans to make those connections in the future. And there is 1 parking lot, with maybe 50 spots, for anyone who wants to use this “trail to nowhere”. I’m not against the project as a whole (ie if the whole trail was being built), but building it piecemeal, with the first portion not connecting to anything and no concrete plans for future trail construction, just makes no sense.

    Am I missing something?

    • Dan, as you can see, the stretch in the canyon currently under construction is 3 miles in Jefferson County and 1 mile in Clear Creek County. Once completed, the 4-mile area under construction will offer a stand alone, out-and-back experience along Clear Creek as well as a connection to over 16 miles of natural surface trail on Jeffco Open Space’s Centennial Cone Park. Both Jeffco and Clear Creek County have worked for decades to acquire land in the corridor for both the provision of recreation opportunities and ecological/biological resource protection. With the real estate in place, the development of the 16.5-mile stretch of trail through Clear Creek Canyon is the priority for this area, and to do so in a sensitive way that protects the natural resources present.

      As with any long-term, costly trail corridor of statewide significance (think Glenwood Canyon trail), making connections takes time and financial resources. This project is no exception. We like to consider each segment as a “trail to somewhere” rather than a “trail to nowhere.” Our plans include priority segments we would like to see constructed in the coming years, but funding, in the form of partnerships and grant pursuits is part of that complicated and challenging approach.

      The great news is that we’re working very hard with our partners at Great Outdoors Colorado (using state lottery proceeds) to realize the next segments of the trail, both in Clear Creek County and Jeffco. In Clear Creek, there is a proposal afoot for the construction of the 2.5 mile segment from the existing terminus at the oxbow parcel to the junction of Hwy 40 and Hwy 6. In Jeffco, we are focused on the “mouth” of Clear Creek Canyon, just west of downtown Golden that will hopefully soon offer a 1.5-mile segment that has some incredible attributes including a loop trail for a short, easy hike, as well as additional parking areas along Hwy 6, that are safe and accessible.

      Rest assured, we at Jeffco Open Space have concrete plans for future trail construction segments, but need to balance the provision of financial and staff resources to this effort along with a park system of over 50,000 acres we actively manage.

      Thank you for your interest and if you have any more questions just let us know.

      • Thanks for the reply. I really appreciate more multi use trails and look forward to this trail being open. I think part of people’s frustration is the lack of communication and poor communication about this project. For example you mention a 4 mile trail, but the link above your response calls it a 6 mile project.
        Originally the trail was going to open in Fall 2015, still no word on an opening date.
        Construction was halted most of late summer and fall of 2015 (long after high water). River users were told the temporary bridges would be removed before high water last year (2015). They are still in place and high water (2016) is just months away.

        Several people (including myself) have questioned starting in the middle of the canyon with no firm plans to connect to either end. Your response hints at a connection to Kermits, but that has been planned since a 2005 Clear Creek County Plan. Any info on when this connection might happen?

        Info from the Governor’s “16 in 2016” plan says a 2.5 mile section will be built
        at the mouth of the canyon connecting to existing trails in Golden. Your response
        says a 1.5 mile trail will be built.

        I understand that this is a difficult and expensive project with uncertain financing.
        But clear and accurate information is important on public projects.

      • Excellent questions and sorry for the confusion, Richard. This project is a true design-build effort. Meaning that things are very fluid and often design is being finalized as construction begins. There have been many complexities and unknowns on this project that have resulted in changes along the way. Your example of the 6 vs. 4 miles of trail is a great instance of this. When we began construction, we envisioned 6 miles of trail based off of a previous high level feasibility study. Once we started drilling down in the design process, costs, constructability and visitor experience dropped the total down to 4 miles. The project doesn’t always get smaller in the design process though. We will be adding a new trailhead with approximately 50 parking spaces at the Big Easy (the east end of the project); something that wasn’t in the original plans, but will be a benefit for everyone.

        There were delays in the permitting of this project tied to the historic floods of 2013, federal sequestration and the government shutdown in 2013. We also made some changes that will benefit you the visitor, but will take more time to complete. These pushed the opening day back almost a year, but we will be opening the initial phase (what was supposed to open in the fall of 2015) this June. Please keep following for updates on the exact date.

        The gauge at the mouth of the canyon hit 2,400 cfs in June of last year in, a record for the last 40 years. This record high water forced our construction crews offsite and onto other jobs for safety reasons, but they were back onsite in August. The delay was unfortunate, but is the nature of working in this environment.

        Another adjustment that had to happen was that the temporary crossings were left in last year. This year, three of the four will definitely be removed by the end of April. The Mayhem Gulch crossing and a new crossing at the Big Easy will remain in place through this year for construction of the next segments of trail. This was detailed in our quarterly update in January and will be highlighted in more detail in our next quarterly update. https://peaks2plains.wordpress.com/2016/01/15/project-update-2016-q1-report/

        You are not alone– we often are asked why we are starting in the middle of the canyon. There are many reasons for this. 1. The connection to the trail system at Centennial Cone Park. 2. The intense recreation that happens in this section of the canyon helps make this a stand alone piece. 3. Availability of parking at the west side of tunnel 5, Cannonball Flats, Mayhem Gulch and what we will now be putting in at the Big Easy. 4. The partnership between the two counties and starting this enormous project together. 5. Funding from Great Outdoors Colorado.

        Our original plan for the “16 in 2016” initiative was a 2.5-mile section starting in Golden. However, due to the funding available from Great Outdoors Colorado and the Jeffco Open Space budget, we had to scale things back to 1.5 miles in the concept paper we submitted at the beginning of March.

        Please know that both counties have plans to finish the trail through the canyon, but the way costs and funding for a project of this size work, time and flexibility are imperative. Please continue to follow the blog for news, updates and more on our opening in June. Let us know if you have any more questions.

        See you on the trail this summer.

  19. Bicyclists and pedestrians are currently prohibited from US Highway 6 through Clear Creek Canyon because the 5 tunnels are too narrow to safely accommodate them. The Peaks to Plains Trail will provide safe, grade separated access through the canyon though. The stretch of trail we are currently working on is a 4 mile segment straddling the Jefferson County and Clear Creek County line. We will be opening the first 3 miles of this project this summer, with the remaining mile set to open in 2017. Once this project is complete, the two Counties will have approximately 12 miles left to finish the canyon and provide bicyclists and pedestrians legal access to the canyon.

  20. I have recently noticed work going on below Mayhem Gulch. It was my understanding that this would be the end point of the project at this time. I continue to be dismayed by the damage to the riparian habitat occurring as the trail moves further down the canyon. Huge amounts of trees and other vegetation continue to be removed form the stream side and being replaced with rock embankments.

    The canyon was a very special natural place very near Denver and this project has sadly changed that forever..The more I see of this project the less I like it. Is there not enough pavement in the world already?

    • They don’t care man. All they care about is cyclists. They’ll tell you otherwise, but none of the other reasons make sense. Have you ever seen anybody walking in the bike lane? Well that’s kinda the whole deal here…

  21. Now almost June 2106. There is a concrete trail constructed up Clear Creek as far as the lower end of tunnel 6. Above this there is no evidence of trail. Will the remaining trail be built along the river from one end of tunnel 6 to its other end, and is this to be done only if Clear Creak Co. approves and funds? With a trail ending at lower entrance to tunnel 6, it looks like a boondoggle. What am I missing?

    • The current trail project goes to the west side of Tunnel 5 where it ends in the parking lot. Clear Creek County is currently working on the design and development of construction drawings for the next segment which will go upstream from Tunnel 5 and around Tunnel 6. We hope to get a far as the bridge where the Creek crosses from the south to north sides of US6. The portion from Tunnel 5 downstream to the County line (about one mile) connects with the trail in Jefferson County which has about 2 miles of trail along the Creek as well as many trails up Centennial Cone. It will make a nice walk/ride for folks and creates momentum for the trail along the Creek to be completed.

  22. I Happen to be one happy person about this whole thing. Watching the progress as I travel through the canyon for work in Black Hawk. .5 days a week. .its just One more reason to get outdoors. I adore the beauty of the idea of a recreational canyon. A full park.
    Thank you JeffCoOpenSpace for your hard work and dedication to keep Colorado wild. For all.
    You can’t please them all. .but that’s because they can barely please themselves.
    Hats off to you all, everyone involved.

  23. I’m an old-timer and long time resident of the mountains and I applaud this project which I know my children and grandchildren will enjoy. I hope to live long enough to enjoy it with them and hope the project gains momentum. I hope it will soon connect with Gilpin County as well as Idaho Springs. I can still ride a bicycle downhill and look forward to the opening day.

  24. I have been watching this during the last 2 years and it is a terrible scar, as bad or worse then when the road was cut over the former tracks long before conservation mattered, now both sides are destroyed. I am amazed what I gave up in the name of the environment and nature when I was younger, only to see this take place in 2016, don’t ever preach to me about saving the environment again.

  25. I had the pleasure of riding the newly opened section of the trail today with my grandson. It was spectacular. Not a scar but the most beautiful and scenic trail I’ve ever been on in my life. Thank you Jeffco Open Space!!!!!

  26. You are going to trash clear creek and ruin it’s natural beauty just so some road cyclist pricks can ride through it? Now when I’m kayaking I’m going to have to look at a nice big concrete block wall, railing and smug road bikers instead of beautiful lichen covered stone and pine.

    On top of that I can’t even imagine the damage this project is going to cause to the river and its surrounding ecosystems. thw concrete bridges further up the canyon have already caused access problems for kayakers and rafters.

    This is all about road bikes. Even mountain bikes could use a 2ft wide dirt trail but.

    Climbers, kayakers, rafters and mountain bikers are almost all universally opposed to this project so remind me again why this momumental waste of money is still moving forward?

  27. You already said it. Cyclists. I’ve been saying the exact same thing you are on this page for two years. They don’t care, it’s all about the cyclists, but they’ll never ever admit it.

  28. Of course its about the cyclists, Duh. 21% of Coloradoans cycle and only 2.8% of Coloradoans kayak according to Outdoor Foundation. Actually, I don’t think the number of kayakers is that high because Outdoor Foundation leans heavily on paddle sports. You whining kayakers sound like a bunch of spoiled elitists who think the outdoors are just for you. I’m old and I can’t take the rigors of kayaking whitewater anymore but I sure as heck can ride my bike with my grandkids and my grandkids are still way too little to kayak. Cycling is a FAMILY ACTIVITY and kayaking is NOT. Get used to seeing cyclists because there are a ton of us cyclists and only a few of you kayakers and we are enjoying the dickens out of the Peak to Plains Trail. Oh, in case you haven’t noticed, there are as many hikers as there are bikers and I didn’t even tally in the number of hikers compared to kayakers. Jefferson County and Clear Creek County Open Space rocks!! Keep it up and finish Peaks to Plains Trail so the vast majority of us tax paying citizens can enjoy your fine work. I hope to see the completed Peaks to Plains trail in my lifetime.

  29. My wife and I just rode the trail today after watching its construction. We really enjoyed it and look forward to additional segments.

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