Based in Durango, Colorado, Trails 2000 is a
501c3 organization that builds and maintains trails; educates trail users and encourages
connectivity on road, path and trail.
Support our Work.
It is almost a no brainer when two of Durango’s favorites are paired together: Trails and beer. In Colorado, the trail-to-brew pub phenomenon is nothing new, but we think it is even more deserving of the spotlight in the Southwest, with over 300 miles of trails within 30 minutes of downtown Durango and six local breweries to choose from. One such popular watering hole is Ska Brewing (visit Ska on Facebook), long-time supporters of Trails 2000 and dedicated users of the trails our community hold so dear.
In partnership with Ska, Trails 2000 is pleased to launch our Trail Partnership Program for 2017. The program aims to help us reach our lofty goal to increase membership this spring. To celebrate the program kick off, Ska Brewing wants folks to join Trails 2000 and is even offering a special gift to anyone who joins during the month of March.
To find out more about Ska’s support of Trails 2000 and their sheer excitement for trails, we sat down with Ska Co-Founder and President, Dave Thibodeau, and “Barroom Hero” aka Sales Manager, Arlo Grammatica. According to Dave and Arlo, they are always on the trails—Dave rides, runs and drinks, alone—see below—where as Arlo is a devoted mountain biker, open to ride with whomever. (Note: Arlo was unable to provide photos of himself on the trails, so despite Dave’s primarily solo trail and drinking adventures, he takes the image gallery spotlight here). Read on for a glimpse of “Ska on the Trail:”
[Trails 2000] Hey Ska! Thanks for joining us today and of course, for offering a free beer to any one who joins Trails 2000 in March—we value and appreciate your continuous support of Trails 2000. Please tell us about Ska Brewing’s motivation for supporting Trails 2000 and the trails in Durango.
[Dave and Arlo] We support the trails in Durango for one main reason, we use them—they literally form the backbone of our wellness program at Ska. We regularly incorporate them into our work day. As we’ve grown, the amount of meetings that we have has also grown, and we’ll tell you that our “meetings” are a lot more productive when they take place on the trails. Trails 2000 is such a big part of our community—the different users, whether horse, hike, bike, or run, really rally around each other and pitch in. At Ska, we believe it’s our responsibility to support that which helps make our community a better place.
[T2000] Absolutely! What about you personally—why do you value and support trails?
[Dave/Arlo] We mountain bike on the trails many times a week and nothing starts a morning off better than a mountain bike ride. It keeps us fit and clear-headed in an industry where a cloudy head is not uncommon.
[T2000] Hey, no judgement here. We do think beer and trails have a long-standing connection, especially in Durango. What do you think makes this duo oh so sweet?
[Dave/Arlo] It’s all about balance, right? Time with friends. Exercise. Reward. Release. Of course, I (Dave) like to run the trails alone, and then drink beer alone—don’t be like me.
[T2000] Again, no judgement. Tell us about your use of the trails.
[Dave/Arlo] We’re both year-round trail users, and Trails 2000 does an amazing job making that possible, particularly keeping us updated on conditions and closings. Our distinct four seasons make that quite a challenge, and we couldn’t be more appreciative. In all honesty, it’s a big part of why we live here.
[T2000] That is true for you and so many others in Durango—of course the beer culture also deserves some of the credit for why we choose to live in Durango! Can you tell us about your trailwork experience—why is it important for you to give back on the trails?
[Dave/Arlo] As lame as it sounds, time is one of our scarcest resources, so we choose to support Trails 2000 and the other trail volunteers through donation of space at the brewery, money, beer, etc. That said, we do pay all of our employees to volunteer at area nonprofits a few days a year, and we know that trailwork is often on the request list.
[T2000] What a cool perk! What do trails mean to you?
[Dave/Arlo] The trails mean so much to us. It is a unique situation to live and work in a town with world-class trails minutes away. Most people have to drive hours to do what we can do out the front door.
[T2000] Don’t we know it! What do you most value about the trails?
[Dave/Arlo] Accessibility and variety.
[T2000] What is your favorite trail and why?
[Dave/Arlo] Hard to choose, but our lunch loop and most frequent “meeting” spot is Sale Barn>Big Canyon.
[T2000] Great choice! If you could offer advice to trail users or future generations, what would it be?
[Dave/Arlo] Protect, respect, conserve, enjoy, have a beer at the end.
[T2000] Cheers to that! Now for our favorite part: The Trails 2000 speed round. Ready, set:
Pulaski or McLeod? [Dave/Arlo] Gotta go with the Pulaski, such an important tool that Ed Pulaski’s original is actually part of the Smithsonian collection.
Run, hike, bike or ride (horses)? [Dave/Arlo] Tie, run=bike.
Tea or coffee (or beer!)? [Dave/Arlo] Tough one…NOT. Beer.
[T2000] Coulda called that one! Thanks so much Dave and Arlo, and the entire Ska crew, for all you do to support our organization and the trails in Durango. Anything else you would like us to know before we go?
[Dave/Arlo] We are so proud of a community that puts outdoor activities in the forefront. I (Arlo) am open to ride with anyone—Dave’s rides alone.
Be like Ska – Join Trails 2000 today. Cheers!
Trails 2000 is pleased to announce the joining of Steve Schwartz as treasurer on the board of directors. Steve is a long-time Durango resident and currently works as vice president for Finance and Administration at Fort Lewis College (FLC), where he has been employed for 20 years. When he’s not hard at work for FLC, he can be found exploring the trails in and around Durango – be it hiking, mountain biking or snowshoeing.
Steve currently serves on the board with Daryl Crites, board president; John Baxter, board secretary; and Melissa Youssef; along with Executive Director Mary Monroe Brown to assist with the strategic vision and goals of Trails 2000.
We were lucky enough to sit down with Steve and hear about his experiences, passion for our trails and organization, and excitement in joining our Board of Directors. Read on:
[Trails 2000] Steve! Thank you for sitting down with us today. Please tell us a little about yourself.
[Steve Schwartz] I was born in the Chicago suburb of Elgin, Illinois, and while I spent the greater part of my young adult life in Chicago, I eventually moved to the whitewater mecca of western North Carolina, where I discovered mountain biking and rock climbing. A few years later, a mountain biking adventure to Moab presented itself, including some time in Durango, where I visited – and became determined to attend – Fort Lewis College. While attending Fort Lewis, I became equally determined to make Durango my home. After graduating, I left Durango to pursue additional education; fast forward five years, and I was back at the Fort as an employee, where I have remained for the last 20 years.
[T2000] That is quite the adventure to calling home Durango. Please tell us more about your role at Fort Lewis and other professional interests?
[Schwartz] I’ve held a number of positions at Fort Lewis College, including director of Institutional Research, budget director, and for the last 15 years, vice president for Finance and Administration. Other professional interest include involvement in community and statewide boards and advisory groups, primarily focused on the areas of education and/or finance.
[T2000] Well, let us be the first to say: Welcome to the Trails 2000 Board of Directors. We are thrilled to have you! Please share with us your reasoning/motivation for joining Trails 2000.
[Schwartz] It is my desire to be part of an organization that caters to the entire community, and I value and admire what Trails 2000 does in promoting access, trail etiquette and safety. The trails in and around Durango are an irreplaceable asset to our community and region, as they afford us entry into the spectacular beauty that is Durango, whether in town or in the high country. As the organization that plans, builds, and maintains these connections, Trails 2000 ensures access for all of us who value a healthy lifestyle.
[T2000] Absolutely! And, what do you most look forward to as treasurer of Trails 2000 board?
[Schwartz] As the treasurer of the board, I strive to both help maintain and strengthen the financial viability of the organization. I also hope to help in expanding the trail network and increasing connectivity.
[T2000] Please tell us about your use of the trails.
[Schwartz] I love being out on our trails! Whether hiking, mountain biking or snowshoeing, whether alone or with a group, the trails are where I go to recreate.
[T2000] Good answer! What do you value most about trails.
[Schwartz] Too often, we take for granted the remarkable trails we have in and around Durango, and fail to recognize how truly fortunate we are to have such a community and regional benefit. It takes vision, immense effort, and dedication to plan, build and maintain our trail network. My hope is to help educate people regarding this asset and, thereby, grow our trail users and advocates.
[T2000] Can you tell us about your trailwork experience?
[Schwartz] My trail work experience includes maintenance tasks on the Appalachian Trail in North Carolina many years ago. My involvement in that work gave me a great appreciation for the efforts of the dedicated Trails 2000 volunteers.
[T2000] That is great; we do have a stellar group of volunteers at Trails 2000, and are always looking for more! Ok, time for a tough question. What is your favorite trail and why?
[Schwartz] It’s very difficult to pick a favorite trail, as there are so many from which to choose. Perhaps it would be best to say that my favorite trail is the last one I experienced. That said, I always enjoy Log Chutes, as it contains a little bit of everything!
[T2000] Absolutely. If you could offer advice to future generations of trail users, what would it be?
[Schwartz] Enjoy the trails, be respectful, and try to always remember how fortunate we all are to live in this special place and have the means to access it.
[T2000] Thanks Steve, that is very well said. Ok, now for a quick speed round—ready, set:
Tea or coffee? [Schwartz] Coffee in the morning, tea in the evening.
[T2000] Thank you, Steve! We really appreciate you taking the time and helping us to get to know you and hear about your experiences. We are thrilled to have you. Happy Trails!
Trails 2000 is gearing up for an exciting 2017 trail season, and Executive Director Mary Monroe Brown is pleased to introduce Emma Millar as the trail crew lead. With over ten years of professional trail building experience—from owning a private business to working with the US Forest Service—Emma brings a stellar skill set and addictive enthusiasm to our organization and is already committed to our mission to plan, build and maintain trails, educate users and encourage connectivity on road, path and trail.
With Emma now a member of the team, we couldn’t wait to sit down with her and learn what she is most excited about as the trail crew lead. And boy, is she ever excited! In her first month, Emma has already been hot on the trail—cruising down favorite trails with nostalgia for her college days at Fort Lewis College, trekking on new trails to take in cool features like grade dips and curvilinear design (like a true trail nerd!), and of course, gearing up for upcoming Trails 2000 events such as the Open House and Trail Reporter Program Training, both held March 1 at Ska Brewing. Once we finally tracked her down (on Star Wars, of course), here is what she had to tell us about her trail expertise and passion for working with volunteers and the community on Durango’s trails. Read on:
[Trails 2000] Emma! Welcome to the team. We are thrilled to have you as trail crew lead. Tell us a little about yourself.
[Emma Millar] Well, I’m originally from Sandpoint, Idaho, and first moved to Durango in 2007 to attend Fort Lewis College (it was really to ride bikes though). I visited a few colleges, but Durango really stuck out because of the easy access to awesome trails—I could ride world-class trails from my dorm room! For a kid without a car, that was pretty vital. After college, I moved to Vermont for a few years, but now I’m back living in Mancos.
[T2000] Aren’t we lucky in Durango, with over 300 miles of trails in our backyard! So you’ve always been drawn to trails—tell us about your professional trail career thus far.
[Millar] I started working on trails while I was in high school; my mom’s best friend was a forester and helped to get me a job with the Forest Service. Little did they know I was going to turn trailwork into a career! I continued working for the Forest Service in Bayfield while I attended Fort Lewis, and after college, I moved to Vermont, where I became a partner in a private trail design and construction company. Even though I loved the work, I needed to move closer to the desert and the mountains. Last summer, I left the Northeast and came back to Colorado.
[T2000] Welcome home! What was your motivation for joining Trails 2000? What do you hope to bring to your role?
[Millar] Well, I am absolutely thrilled to be here! I wanted to work with Trails 2000 for entirely selfish reasons—I love trailwork and I love working with volunteers. I wanted to be a part of such a forward-thinking organization. The mission also reflects my values; building and maintaining trails, and education are all important to me, but the connectivity part is what really resonated. I think the most important goal of trailwork is connecting people to the landscape and to each other.
[T2000] That is spot on in our book. So, what do you most look forward to with Trails 2000, and what do you hope to contribute to the trails in Durango?
[Millar] I’m so excited to start working on the trails! I hope to bring a bunch of enthusiasm to volunteer days and to inspire everyone to get out on the trails and to become trail stewards in addition to trail users. I want all trail users to feel like Trails 2000 is there for them and is listening to their concerns. So don’t hesitate to contact me and tell me what you want!
[T2000] Got trail ideas? Send ’em to Emma@Trails2000.org or come meet her at our Open House! Emma, can you tell us about your personal use of the trails?
[Millar] Mostly I hike and mountain bike. Honestly though, when I get on a new trail, I spend most of my time checking out design and construction techniques. It’s very distracting and you definitely should avoid hiking or riding behind me.
[T2000] Noted! What do you most value about the trails?
[Millar] Trails mean a lot to me—I’ve built my whole career on the power of trails to connect people to the landscape and to each other. There’s an understanding in trail design and construction that if we do our jobs right, the trail user will never even notice. Few people will really see a crib wall, or a grade dip, or notice the nice curvilinear design, and I love seeing people walk or ride right over my work without even realizing that any work was involved.
[T2000] That is a beautiful thing–yet so much works does go into it, thanks to people like you and our amazing Trails 2000 volunteers! Ok, we have to know: What is your favorite trail and why?
[Millar] I’m not sure I have a favorite trail; it’s like picking your favorite kid! I’ve built a lot of trails of which I’m very proud. My go-to after-work trail would probably be Star Wars. I’m a downhiller at heart, but I’m also pretty wimpy now, so Star Wars is great for making me feel super cool and fast, without being actually scary. However, it’s been about five years since I lived in Durango, and there are a lot of new trails, so I’ve got some riding to do!
[T2000] Yes you do! But before then, if you could offer advice to future generations of trail users, what would it be?
[Millar] My advice would be to just calm down, take a deep breath, and realize that no matter how you may feel about it, more people on trails is actually a good thing. Lots of studies show that besides the obvious health benefits of exercise and being outside, positive experiences on trails lead to more people actively protecting trails and access. And that is definitely good.
[T2000] It definitely is! We love that mentality. Ok, so now it is time for our favorite part. The Trails 2000 Speed round—ready, set:
Pulaski or McLeod? [Millar] Oh, man! I used to be such a Pulaski girl, but I’ve probably used a McLeod more in the last few years. My favorite tool is the right one for the job.
Run, hike, bike or ride (horses)? [Millar] Bike and hike.
Tea or coffee? [Millar] I love everything about coffee except the part where it makes me all weird. So I drink tea.
[T2000] Thanks Emma! It was so great to catch up with you. We know you’ve been busy getting ready for what we think is going to be an inspiring trail season. Before we go, anything else you would like us to know?
[Millar] Thank you! I’m stoked and grateful to be here, and I really do want to hear from trail users. Let me know what’s going on, and come introduce yourself at the Open House at Ska Brewing on March 1 and consider joining our Trail Reporter Program.
That’s all for now. Thanks for reading!
Trails 2000 is pleased to invite trail enthusiasts to an Open House at Ska Brewing on Wednesday, March 1, from 5:30 to 7:00 p.m. Come meet our team, along with our new Trail Crew Lead Emma Millar, and TrailKids Educator Ziggy Lanman. Share your trail ideas and learn about our new easy to use mobile software to provide trail updates as we train for the new Trail Reporter program. Please note: A brief training will take place at 5:00 p.m. right before the open house for Trail Reporters interested in joining the program.
Wednesday, March 1, 5:30 to 7:00 p.m.
Trail Reporter Training, 5:00 p.m.
Ska Brewing World Headquarters, 225 Girard St.
As part of their continued support of the local trails and community, Ska Brewing will graciously donate $1 of every beer purchased to Trails 2000 at the event.
View the event poster here.
Preceding the open house, a brief informational and training session will be held at 5:00 p.m., where Emma will train you on our newly developed mobile app. The easy to use software can be accessed from your phone, you simply state where you are, what trail and if the trail conditions are good, fair or poor and add a photo. We’ll update the Trail Conditions report with details from our Trail Reporters. It’s that simple! Learn more about the Trail Reporters program here.
Are you interested in a unique opportunity to join a leading nonprofit organization in the outdoor industry? Do you want to make a significant positive impact on the community? Are you passionate about the outdoors?
Durango Trails 2000 — local nonprofit trails organization in Durango, Colorado — is hiring for a part-time Trails Intern. The ideal candidate will be able to work independently and have experience in trail maintenance and construction. Working with and reporting to the Trail Crew Lead, the right person will also have a keen understanding of the importance of interacting with volunteers, the public, and land managers and their role as an ambassador on and off the trail.
This rigorous, paid, 15 week, career-building internship offers an outstanding opportunity to learn from professionals in the field, develop skills, and gain networking contacts—all while living and working in and around Durango. Interns will receive trail construction and maintenance training, gain supervisory experience, and build network relationships that they will use for the rest of their careers. During their 15 weeks, the intern will learn the methods used by natural resource professionals and community planners.
For full job description, click here.
The application is now closed. Thank you.
Trails 2000 is pleased to announce – new for 2017 – the Trail Reporter program: A unique opportunity for anyone who frequents trails in and around Durango and wants to help provide input on those trails closest to their backyard or that they frequent daily. To kick off the program, Trails 2000 will host a brief informational and training session on March 1 at 5:00 p.m. at Ska Brewing, right before the Open House from 5:30 to 7:00 p.m. We’ve developed an easy to use mobile app that takes 10 seconds to fill out and allows you to add a photo to show the trail conditions.
What? The Trails 2000 Trail Reporter program provides on-the-ground, real time updates for current trail conditions. Trails 2000 has created a mobile-friendly website app available to the trained Trail Reporters to provide immediate trail updates. We’ll aggregate all of the updates for our Trail Condition Report and share the information and photos from Trail Reporters to update trail users.
Who? YOU! If you regularly walk, run, hike, bike, or ride horses on trails in the Durango area, we want YOU to fill out the simple, online mobile form – training will be provided – to send us your trail conditions, updates and photos. It’s that easy!
Are there prizes? Of course! Come to the training on March 1 to learn more.
How? Please attend the training on March 1, 5:00 p.m., at Ska Brewing, and stay after for an Open House event.
Questions? Contact Trails 2000 Trail Crew Leader, Emma Millar, please email Emma@Trails2000.org or by calling 970-259-4682, to learn more about how to get involved.
We Want You!
Trails 2000 has teamed up with Volunteers for Outdoor Colorado (VOC) to offer an exciting training program for trail crew leadership in Durango, April 29 and 30, 2017. The two-day Trail Crew Leader Training will introduce the fundamentals of successful volunteer crew management and is open to all levels of trail experience, from beginner to long-time volunteer. The training program is taught by long-time VOC instructors, Steve and Patch, who bring many years experience in sustainable trail design and crew leadership.
Upon competition of the program, Trails 2000 will hire interested and qualified crew leaders for the 2017 season to assist the organization during public trailwork days.
Reserve your spot by Friday, April 7, 2017; space is limited and class fills up quickly.
Register Here: Complete the form below. More information will be emailed to attendees following registration.
The application for Durango Trail Crew Lead is now closed.
Are you interested in a unique opportunity to join a leading nonprofit organization in the outdoor industry? Do you want to live in a mountain town community, while making a significant positive impact on the community? Are you passionate about the outdoors? Do you wish you could combine your passion for the outdoors and with your career?
Durango Trails 2000 — local nonprofit trail organization in Durango, Colorado — is hiring for a full-time Trail Crew Lead. The ideal candidate will be a strong leader with expertise in the design, maintenance and development of system trails, including a knowledge of sustainable trail construction, group facilitation expertise, and strong project management skills. Working with and reporting to the Executive Director, the right person will also have a keen understanding of the importance of interacting with volunteers, the public and land managers and their role as an ambassador on and off the trail. Opportunities for professional development related to the job are available.
For full job description, click here.
The application for Durango Trail Crew Lead is now closed. No phone calls or mail please.
So many of us – whether locals or visitors; recreation-ists or commuters; mountain bikers, hikers, trail runners and more – use the trails. So why not give where you live and play? Trails 2000 invites Coloradans and all outdoor enthusiasts to support our efforts to plan, build and maintain the over 300 miles of trails in Durango, Colorado by donating to your local nonprofit trail organization on Colorado Gives Day, December 6, 2016.
Presented by Community First Foundation and FirstBank, Colorado Gives Day is an annual statewide movement to celebrate and increase philanthropy through online giving. The event is powered by ColoradoGives.org, a year-round, online giving website. Visit Trails 2000’s CO Gives profile, to make your safe and secure donation in a few easy steps.
Donations can now be made online by visiting ColoradoGives.org and searching for Trails 2000 (www.coloradogives.org/trails2000). Once on our profile, simply click the “Donate” button. Add your donation amount and press the “CO Gives Day” button to schedule it. Complete the other fields and click “add to cart.” Continue checking out by logging in or creating a donor account, entering your payment information, and then submit. Scheduled donations will process on Colorado Gives Day, December 6.
Gifts to Trails 2000 will also help the organization secure a portion of the $1 Million Incentive Fund. Community First Foundation and FirstBank each contributed $500,000 to create a $1 Million Incentive Fund, one of the largest gives-day incentive funds in the country. Every nonprofit receiving a donation on Colorado Gives Day receives a portion of the fund, which increases the value of every dollar donated. For example, if Trails 2000 receives 10 percent of the total donations made on Colorado Gives Day, the nonprofit also receives 10 percent of the $1 Million Incentive Fund.
Community First Foundation, a leading foundation dedicated to fueling the power of community to drive positive change, and FirstBank, Colorado’s largest locally owned bank, have partnered to present Colorado Gives Day for the past seven years. By making fundraising simple for nonprofits and giving easy for donors, Colorado Gives Day is one the most successful events of its kind in the nation. Last year, $28.5 million was raised for Colorado nonprofits in just 24 hours. Since its inception in 2010, $111 million has been donated on Colorado Gives Day.
For more information: Sign up for our free E-Newsletter in the upper right hand corner of this page, and “Like” us on Facebook. For more information about Colorado Gives Day, please visit ColoradoGivesDay.org.
Local non profit, Trails 2000 — headquartered in the stunning San Juan Mountains of Southwest Colorado — announces their newest fundraising effort that gives outdoor enthusiasts a unique way to support their beloved trails and make a feel good purchase this holiday season: the Happy Trails online store.
Southwest Colorado is a widely visited tourist destination, and locals have long ranked the abundance of trails as their number one want and need for living and visiting the area. Trails have always been non denominational; users don’t have to join a club, pay dues, or attend a meeting to enjoy the many benefits of the trail network. As a result, trails are a highly used, free resource — for both the community and tourists — all planned, built and maintained by local non profit, Trails 2000.
“Locally made cards, vintage T-shirts and many other quality products sold for a great cause set our online holiday store apart this giving season,” said Mary Monroe Brown, executive director of Trails 2000. “Gifting for good is the way of the future, and Trails 2000 is excited to launch our new online store and provide thousands of trail users with a way to give back.”
Featuring top notch, local designs and functional products great for gift giving and everyday use, the online store is housed on global search engine giant, Amazon, as well as on Trails 2000’s own site here. According to recent data, 85 percent of online product searches now take place on Amazon.com; this will provide extensive global reach to the organization.
Monroe Brown added, “Whether you’re looking for unique letterpress holiday cards for friends and family or stylish Happy Trails logo tees for kids and adults alike, this store is the place for you to make a feel good purchase to support a good cause.”
A feel good purchase worth making
The products featured in the online store capture the essence of visiting the area: showcasing photo cards with beautiful imagery of the Southwest, commemorative poster of iconic trail and favorite adventure slogans like Happy Trails. High quality products appeal to supporters both native to Colorado and those across the U.S.; they are reflective of the organization’s mission to plan, build and maintain trails, of which all proceeds go to support.
Online store products include:
The store can be accessed on Amazon and on Trails 2000 Shop online (click on “Shop” in the top and left navigation when accessing from home page). All proceeds benefit Trails 2000 for the planning, building and maintaining of the local trail network.
Trails 2000 further diversifies funding and global reach as a member of AmazonSmile, which donates a portion of Amazon purchases to the organization by encouraging consumers to shop through a unique organization link to make product purchases on Amazon (at no additional cost to consumer). Trails 2000 is also a participant of Colorado Gives Day, an annual statewide movement to celebrate and increase philanthropy in Colorado by giving to local non profits online; more information will be available on Colorado Gives come mid-November.
Trails 2000’s TrailKids program here; excited to present our newest project AND newest member of our team, respectively: 1) Two days of hard work on Mike’s Trail with Animas High School (AHS) students, and 2) TrailKids Educator Elizabeth “Ziggy” Lanman. Recently hired, Ziggy has been hard at work on the trail, providing over 80 AHS’ sophomores an educational experience on the trail. At Trails 2000, TrailKids aims to develop a sense of community ownership in youth, while teaching about the land, geography, vegetation, and stewardship in an educational setting. The last two days were just that.
According to Executive Director Mary Monroe Brown: ”[AHS teacher] Tina and the students were outstanding; it was such a pleasure to spend the day with engaged and interested young people. The morning ecology lesson was fantastic, and I was impressed with both Ziggy and Tina’s passion for teaching and the lessons the kids had already learned this semester. The afternoon trailwork went equally well, and the work on Mike’s Trail was top notch: the re-route and the revegetation of the old alignment.”
Read Ziggy’s account of the successful work days, and a bit more about her to get to know our TrailKids Educator:
[Trails 2000] Tell me about the project on Mike’s Trail? Give us all the gooey, science details, if you will…
[Ziggy Lanman] The Mike’s Trail work day with Animas High School was my first program with Trails 2000, and it was intended to educate sophomores about the ecology of the Horse Gulch area and its intersectionality with trailwork. Trails, although being an important resource to communities, present unique challenges as a type of disturbance in an ecosystem. For example, trail erosion can often cause excessive disturbance beyond the trail, and trail users also unintentionally act as vectors for the dispersal of invasive plants (such as biennial thistles or knapweed to name a few), which can squelch biodiversity by outcompeting native plants in those areas of disturbance. The lesson was intended to bring these problems to light in scientific terms that the students had already learned this past semester in school. Those concepts were then applied to trail building by justifying our reroute of that section of eroded, unsustainable trail!
[T2000] Ok, now that is COOL! What was your favorite aspect of the project?
[Ziggy] I honestly am most excited about the sheer amount of work the kids put in! We did about 1/4 of the re-route of Mike’s, and all of the rehabilitation in two days, which is about 400 hours of work. The project probably would not have been finished this season if we didn’t have the help of those students. Mike’s is a very popular trail in Horse Gulch, and the re-route definitely is a more sustainable trail that will be around for MUCH longer than the eroded section.
[T2000] Well then, a HUGE shoutout to those students. What an important contribution to our trail system. And, thank you to you, Ziggy. Tell us, what are you most excited about as the TrailKids Educator for Trails 2000?
[Ziggy] I am SUPER excited to share my passion for the outdoors with kids. One of the reasons I moved to Durango was to spend more time outside (and not in the classroom) to gain an even greater appreciation for where my body, and bike, can take me! There is nothing that I would love more than instilling that sense of love and appreciation to younger generations, and that’s something that outdoor, hands on education can provide. There’s nothing like watching a kid discover how much fun it is to get dirty and really connect with the earth—I think that this experience is necessary in trying to get kids to fundamentally CARE about our planet. And trails are a necessary resource for that experience!
[T2000] Well said, we certainly couldn’t agree more. What should people know about the TrailKids program?
[Ziggy] TrailKids is intended as a way for kids to get outside, learn something connected to their schoolwork, but also to give back to the community in some way. While the AHS trailwork project was giving back in physical man hours out on the trail, other programs will focus on making 3D trail signs with the geology of the surrounding area, or less tangible things such as an appreciation for the outdoors and an understanding of what trails give to us!
[T2000] Ok, you obviously know a thing or two about trails, biology, and working with kids. Tell us a little about yourself.
[Ziggy] I’m originally from Santa Fe, NM. I graduated from Whitman College in Walla Walla, WA, with a degree in Biology, five months ago. I really wanted to switch things up from being immersed in academia, so I moved to Durango mid-June to mountain bike and teach science to kids!
[T2000] So cool, especially the part about moving to Durango—we sure love our town! Tell me more about your past and present education/career?
[Ziggy] I have worked as a preschool teacher’s assistant, and outdoor educator for the past three years in Santa Fe for an awesome company called Mountain Kids, and a science educator this past summer working for Powerhouse Science Center (of Durango). I have worked with a plethora of little kids for pretty much all of my life! If you knew me, you’d know my personality is that of a twelve year old (definitely a strong suit, I would say), so I think this fact gives me a leg up when teaching the youth. This is my first season working with Trails 2000, although pretty much my entire family is involved in trail building somehow: my father is an active Santa Fe Fat Tire Society member and puts in countless hours maintaining the trails around Santa Fe, and my brother is a free ride mountain biker, so I’ve had decent exposure to trailwork before!
[T2000] What can you tell me about your personal use of the trails.
[Ziggy] I use trails every day, maybe even twice a day! I am a runner and mountain biker.
[T2000] Yes, yes, times two! And, what do trails mean to you?
[Ziggy] Trails mean so much more to me than just a place to run or ride: they are where I recharge, reflect, and find solace. Trails push me to discover more about myself, whether through straight cardiovascular pain (I’m specifically referring to that last section of the Telegraph climb), or through hootin’ and hollerin’ downhill on bikes with my friends.
[T2000] What do you most value about the trails?
[Ziggy] On a bike, I personally value trails that push my limits. I like tech-y, chunder-y stuff that makes you stay on your toes. It’s fun to ride trails that force you to be completely and utterly present, where lapse of attention could send you into an oak bush or prickly pear or something.
[T2000] What is your favorite trail and why?
[Ziggy] I have many favorite trails… If I were to go on a ride at this exact moment RIGHT NOW, I would ride Anasazi in Horse Gulch.
[T2000] If you could offer advice to future generations of trail users, what would it be?
[Ziggy] Future generations of trail users, do some trail maintenance! I say this for two reasons: 1) Throwing a Pulaski around is one of the most fun things ever, and 2) It’s important to know how much work goes into maintaining a trail because so you can appreciate those who volunteer their blood, sweat, and tears to make trails continuously usable. It’s kind of insane how much work T2000 does. Seriously people, go volunteer.
[T2000] We do LOVE our volunteers! And, anyone who wants to join our cause, for that matter. Ok, Ziggy. It is now time for the Trails 2000 Speed Round:
[T2000] 1) Pulaski or McLeod? [Ziggy] Pulaski, duh. [T2000] 2) Hike, bike or ride (horses)? [Ziggy] RIDE. [T2000] 3) Tea or coffee? [Ziggy] Coffee for sure—I drink ungodly amounts that would kill a small child probably.
Phew! Well, no wonder you can crank it up Telegraph—and keep up with the kiddos for that matter. Thank you for your time in this interview, but especially for your time out on the trails with our TrailKids. Now get back out there, and toss some dirt around (sustainably, of course).
Trails 2000 and sponsor Target Rental invite you to the Grand Opening of the Log Chutes Trail Network on Sunday, September 11, at 11:00 a.m. The public is invited to come celebrate the new Westview loop and the overall reinvigoration of the trail network, designed and built in partnership between Trails 2000 and the US Forest Service.
Located in a beautiful area just above the Colorado Trail trailhead, the trail network is open to all users, including hikers, runners, horseback riders, and mountain bikers. The Westview loop overlooks Silver in the La Plata Mountains and offers spectacular views of town. In addition to the new loop, a dozen new signs will be installed, including a new trailhead sign at the Log Chutes parking lot, to help improve user experience.
In the coming weeks, Trails 2000 is looking for six folks to help with sign installation in Log Chutes. If interested in participating, please email Info@Trails2000.org; we’ll supply all tools and instruction.
When: Sunday, September 11, meet at 11:00 a.m.
Where/Meet: Log Chutes, meet 4 miles past the Colorado Trail Trailhead. Directions: From Main Avenue (heading north) in Durango, take a left at 25th Street. The street turns into Junction Street, continue west where you will see a sign for the Colorado Trail trailhead. Continue up the road four miles until you see the Trails 2000 truck parked on the road.
Hope to see you there!
Trails 2000 is pleased to announce the first annual Happy Trails Festival, on Sunday, Sept. 25, to celebrate Durango’s Happy Trails and community. The afternoon will feature live music by Eldergrown and The Afrobeatniks, beer from Steamworks and Ska Brewing, food trucks, fun kids zone, and group rides and run. The event benefits local nonprofit Trails 2000. Thank you to presenting sponsors Fort Lewis College Skyhawks and Mercy Regional Medical Center.
When: Sunday, Sept. 25, from 2:00 to 6:00 p.m.
Where: Buckley Park, 1250 Main Ave., Durango
Cost: $10 per person in advance at Durango Recreation Center or Southwest Sound (available after Aug. 25); $12 day of event (at the door). Kids are FREE.
Live Music: Eldergrown; The Afrobeatniks
Beer: Steamworks and Ska Brewing
Food Trucks: Gourmet Pagosa Pita, Fired Up, Bounty for the Belly, and the Purple Ice Cream Truck
Booths: FLC Cycling, Durango DEVO, 2nd Avenue Sports, Mountain Bike Specialists, and Pine Needle Mountaineering
Trail Fun: A KidsZone with DEVO fun area; group mountain bike rides led by Olympian and home town hero, Travis Brown (meet at Buckley Park at 9 a.m.); and group run sponsored by Durango Running Company (meet at Buckley Park at 1 p.m.).
Hope to see you there!
Trails 2000 will host A Hike to Gudy’s for Gudy to honor the “Mother of the Colorado Trail,” Gudrun “Gudy” Gaskill, on Tuesday, August 16, at 4:00 p.m. Sign up available here. The public is invited to pay tribute to Gaskill for a group hike or mountain bike ride from lower Junction Creek Trailhead to Gudy’s Rest, approximately four miles. Sponsored by local sports nutrition company, Tailwind Nutrition, the event will take place on a portion of Trails 2000’s 19.1-mile adopted sections (28.2 and 28.3) of the Colorado Trail from Champion Venture to Junction Creek—the longest adopted area in the state.
“Trails 2000 honors Gudy in every way for the legacy she leaves on the Colorado Trail; we cherish her strength, hard work, and leadership; dedication and love of the outdoors; and deep desire to preserve the trail for generations,” said Mary Monroe Brown, executive director of Trails 2000. “The Colorado Trail is a major outdoor economic driver for our area, and Gudy’s vision for the trail is something we will always pay tribute to and appreciate.”
Monroe Brown will attend the hike, accompanied by Colorado Trail board members Jerry Brown, Ken Marshall, and Ted LaMay, who was a member of the CT board from 1995-2001, CT adoptee of Slide Rock (section 28.1) from 1994-2013, and retired US Forest Service-Columbine District Ranger of 33 years. Tailwind Nutrition, a multi year supporter of Trails 2000, generously offered to sponsor the event. Tailwind Nutrition provides endurance fuel to community organizations and events so that athletes of all ages can stay energized on their epic trail adventures.
Gaskill, who passed away on July 14, is credited for making the 500-mile trail from Denver to Durango a reality. From 1973 when the trail was conceived, Gaskill dedicated the next 43 years of her life to taking the trail from idea to reality as a trail builder and organizer. She worked extensively with Bill Manning, past executive director of Trails 2000, and current executive director of the Colorado Trail Foundation since 2006, since he began volunteering on the trail in 1994. Gaskill was also inducted into the Colorado Women’s Hall of Fame in 2002 and honored in Durango in March 2015.
When: Tuesday, Aug. 16, meet at 4:00 p.m.
Where/Meet: The Colorado Trail, meet at lower Junction Creek Trailhead to hike to Gudy’s Rest. Directions: From Main Avenue (heading north) in Durango, take a left at 25th Street. The street turns into Junction Street, continue west where you will see a sign for the Colorado Trail trailhead, park your car in the parking lot and meet at the Trails 2000 work truck.
What to wear: Please wear appropriate hiking/biking attire, and bring water and a rain jacket (optional).
Sign up here.
Trails 2000 is pleased to announce their annual membership drive and party, Trails and Ales, on Wednesday, April 20, at Carver Brewing Company. All new and renewing members, donors, patrons, and trail enthusiasts alike are invited to attend the event, presented by local sponsors Osprey Packs and First National Bank. The event features live music by Hello Dollface Duo, a silent auction, and free beer and light food from Carvers to anyone who joins or renews and/or gives to Trails 2000. The annual event takes place just days before the national recognition of Earth Day (April 22).
When: Wednesday, April 20, from 4:30 to 7:30 p.m.
Where: Carver Brewing Company, 1022 Main Avenue, Durango
What: Meet and mingle with trail enthusiasts, bring your ideas for our trails, and learn about upcoming trail work, projects, and other ways to get involved, including the Trailwork Season Kick Off, set for Saturday, April 16, sponsored by Alpine Bank. We’ll also have free give away swag by the barrel-ful!
All proceeds from joining, renewing, and donating go toward Trails 2000’s mission to plan, build and maintain Durango’s trail network, educate trail users, and encourage connectivity on road, path, and trail. An important part of Trails 2000 success is direct feedback from the community. Currently, Trails 2000 is requesting participation in their Trail Usage and Attitude Survey to help gain valuable insight into people’s opinions of the trails and how they utilize them. The 20-question survey only takes three minutes, and can be accessed online here.
Thank you to Carvers—and our presenting sponsors, Osprey and First National Bank—for all they provide to make this event possible!
Thank you for taking our Trail Usage and Atttitude Survey.
Trails 2000 has teamed up with Volunteers for Outdoor Colorado (VOC) to offer an exciting training program for trail crew leadership in Durango, April 16 and 17, 2016. The two-day Crew Leader Training will introduce the fundamentals of successful volunteer crew management for the construction and maintenance of sustainable trails. The training program will be taught by long-time VOC instructors, Steve and Patch, who bring many years experience in sustainable trail design and crew leadership.
Reserve your spot by March 26; space is limited and class fills up quickly.
Register Here: Complete the form below. More information will be emailed to attendees following registration.
Seasonal Wildlife Closures are now in effect December 1, 2015 through April 15, 2016. Please visit the Trail Conditions page for updates, including winter trail report for updates on all your favorite winter trail activities.
We are seeking trail reporters to provide weekly trail updates on the trails you frequent most often. Please email Info@Trails2000.org if you are interested in providing updates.
Dates: Dec. 1-April 15
Closed trails located in: Bodo State Wildlife Area, Perins Peak State Wildlife Area, the top of Animas City Mountain, Twin Buttes and Grandview. The Smelter Mountain Trail is also open, but only from 10 a.m.-2 p.m., Dec. 1 – April 15, and dogs are prohibited.
Trails 2000 would like to thank you, your family and everyone who supported us this year. In the Durango area, trails create community and connect us. This year, which marked our 25th anniversary, our volunteers provided over 4,000 hours of work on your world-class trails. Your financial support is essential to our continued success, and we rely on your help.
In 2015, Trails 2000:
Please help us continue our mission to plan, build and maintain trails, educate trail users, and encourage trail connectivity on road, path and trail. Please contribute here to our year-end campaign, become a member and/or volunteer, and sign up for our Elist in the upper right hand corner of this site.
Thank you for all of your support!
Trails 2000, in partnership with Purgatory Resort and the U.S. Forest Service, recently celebrated the Grand Opening of Divinity Flow Trail at Purgatory Resort, on Sunday, September 13. The new trail, Durango’s longest and only lift-served flow trail, would not have been possible without the hard work and expertise of the design and build teams. In particular, Trails 2000 would like to give special thanks to crew leader Grady James for his tremendous work in building such a quality, successful trail.
Trails 2000 recently sat down with Grady to talk about the new trail and his take on all things flow. Read what Grady had to say about trails, riding and life in general:
[Trails 2000] Tell us a little about yourself, Grady.
[Grady James] Well, I’m 26 years old, born in Durango. That about summarizes it.
[T2000] Ok, let’s dig a little deeper. What do you do for work, and specifically for Trails 2000 and trail work/building?
[James] In the winter, I am a guide for San Juan Untracked. Come summer, I spend my time operating heavy equipment for AJ Construction. The experience I have gained running equipment for them played a huge role in the success of the flow trail and my work with Trails 2000. They provided the mini excavator, plate compactor and countless other tools used for everything from shaping berms to notch cutting logs and assembling the bridges.
[T2000] Cool, yes let’s give a shout out to AJ Construction. So you mentioned berms, logs and bridges. Tell us more about the Divinity Flow Trail.
[James] This trail was 100 percent machine built and finished. Handwork was very minimal on this project due to the sheer size of all the features. We would spend five minutes raking out a berm after the machine went through and then another five minutes compacting it. The amount of material the machine could process was impressive. In the 4-pack table top section alone, I would estimate we produced and used around 120 yards of dirt. That’s 12 dump truck loads worth dirt that was dug up on site. Afterwards, the borrow pits were filled in with surrounding dead logs and capped with a foot of recycled soil and native sod.
[T2000] Wow, that is truly impressive. Now that all that hard work is done, what do you most look forward to with the new flow trail, and what does it bring to our community?
[James] This flow trail is Purgatory’s entrance back into the bike world! Twenty-five years ago they hosted the first-ever Mountain Bike World Championships. It is my hope that this is the initial stepping stone aimed at rejuvenating Purg’s mountain bike scene. Hopefully we can watch another World Cup at Purg in the future. I don’t think they will race on the flow trail, but perhaps we can build some more trails… (fingers crossed).
[T2000] It is an exciting opportunity for the bike community and a huge asset to our mountain and community in general. So, when locals and visitors take to the flow trail, what should they know about riding the trail?
[James] Don’t pedal! It’s a flow trail and was built so that riders’ speed is regulated by the features. There are sections that you can go really fast, and if you are riding it correctly, never once should you have to pedal.
[T2000] So, we want to hear about some trails other than the flow trail (even though it’s hard to stop talking about it), since we know you’ve been riding in Durango for many years. What is your favorite trail and why?
[James] The steeper, rougher, rockier and more technical the trail, the better. Bike technology is super rad these days. Trails ridden exclusively by 40 pound downhill bikes 10 years ago are now manageable with 28 pound trail bikes.
[T2000] If you could offer advice to future generations of trail users, what would it be?
[James] Rocks are the most sustainable material in our trails. They anchor the dirt in place. Leave them in the trail! Sometimes they are rough and placed awkwardly but negotiating them is part of mountain biking.
[T2000] Thanks for that, something we all at Trails 2000 definitely agree with. OK time for our favorite part, the speed round:
Pulaski or McLeod? Chainsaw.
Hike, bike or ride? Bike, duh.
Tea or coffee? Beer.
[T2000] Great, love it! Well thank you for taking the time, Grady! It was a pleasure to get to know you better and hear about your thoughts on the new flow trail and all things trails. We’ll see you out on Divinity – Happy Trails!
Trails 2000 would also like to thank: Mike McCormack, Josh Hamill and the entire Purgatory team, along with partners at USFS, Matt and Jed, Trails 2000 volunteers, and the Gravity Council (for their help in the planning phases).
©2017 Trails 2000 • PO Box 3868 • Durango, CO 81301 • 970-259-4682