Category Archives: Hot Topics

End of Year Donations

Thanks to everyone who donated to BATCO through Colorado Gives Day! If you missed it, you can still donate to BATCO using the “Join/Donate” tab on this website. Hint, hint 🙂

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Anemone Hill Trail Construction

Trail Closures – updated May 17, 2021

May update: OSMP’s trail construction contractor will be utilizing a helicopter to mobilize materials to the Anemone Hill trail construction project site. Helicopter work will require a public safety closure on the Anemone Hill and Red Rocks area. The closure is scheduled for Monday, May 24, weather pending, or the soonest good weather day afterwards. Please visit this webpage again for any updates. View a map of the closure area .Anemone Trail work

February Update: Trail construction is continuing over the winter as weather allows on the new Anemone Trail loop. The existing Anemone Trail has been re-opened, while an area closure is in-place where trail construction is actively continuing. The area has been signed accordingly. Please stay out of closed areas due to rockfall risk, mechanized equipment, and rock blasting in these areas, and do not remove or damage signs. Trail closures are expected to change as-needed for public safety and project efficiency as work continues.

View a map of the current area closure 

Why are trail closures needed?

Mechanized equipment, rock blasting, rockfall, and other construction hazards necessitate closure of Anemone Hill trails during construction hours.

Anemone Hill trails are expected to be open evenings and weekends.

Nearby trails, especially around the Centennial and Settlers Park Trailheads and the Red Rocks Area, will have short-term closures when heavy equipment and helicopters are operating in the area to support the Anemone Hill project.

PLEASE DO NOT ENTER CLOSURE AREAS OR REMOVE CLOSURE FENCES AND SIGNS   â€“ doing so puts yourself and other visitors at risk, slows down construction, and increases project costs. No trespassing in closure areas. Violators will be ticketed and fined up to $1000 and/or 90 days in jail.

Anemone Hill project update, June 4, 2020 

Trail construction has started! The crew has mobilized equipment to the site, and begun work on a large stone retaining wall and stone stairs. Here, the crew is preparing a stone that has been drilled and split to be moved by cable to the project site.

Trail construction work
Anemone Hill

Project Overview

What work is being done?

OSMP is constructing a new three-mile loop trail – this new route will bring people to many of the existing popular locations on Anemone Hill, and some new areas. Additionally, existing undesignated trails in the area that are in poor condition and which negatively impact habitat will be closed and re-vegetated to reduce impacts to the environment.

View a map of the planned project .

What can I expect to see during the project?

  • Mechanized equipment is being used for this project. Helicopters are expected to be used for mobilizing materials for some aspects of the work.Trail work with machine
  • Rockfall control fencing will be installed on the eastern part of Anemone Hill – this is needed to prevent rockfall over Boulder Canyon during construction. This barrier will be removed before project completion.

When is this project occurring?

The project will start as early as Thursday, May 14, 2020 and is expected to take approximately two years to complete.

Why is this project being done? 

The new trail will replace existing trails, which have significant erosion and widening issues. These issues are negative impacts to the surrounding environment and are impossible for OSMP to adequately maintain. OSMP trail staff and ecologists have collaborated on the trail design with the goal of providing a fantastic recreational opportunity for trail users while minimizing negative impacts to the environment and habitat.

The Anemone Hill project is part of the OSMP West Trail Study Area (WTSA)  management plan, which was approved by OSMP’s Board of Trustees and Boulder’s City Council and involved significant public input. 

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Bear Canyon Reroute Project

OSMP will begin a trail project to re-route a 1/3-mile section of Bear Canyon Trail the week of May 24, and expected to last through November 2021. Bear Canyon Trail will be closed to public access from 6 am – 5 pm Mon-Fri during this timeframe due to rockfall hazard from the trail construction site. The trail will be open evenings and weekends. This project will re-route a section of Bear Canyon Trail away from sensitive streamside habitat, improve trail conditions, and reduce trail susceptibility to flood damage. Brief (up to one hour) closures on Bear Peak West Ridge Trail are also expected on Monday, May 24 (weather pending), or the first good weather day after, for helicopter work to mobilize equipment to the project site. View a map of the planned trail closure .

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Most Boulder County Parks & Open Space Back Open After Fires

Many Boulder County open space closures will be lifted Nov. 10, parks officials announced.

BOULDER COUNTY, CO — Most Boulder County Open Space closures have been lifted, parks officials said.

The parkland is reopening “due to the decreased fire danger and current weather conditions,” Boulder County Parks and Open Space said in a news release. Heil Valley Ranch will remain closed for resource and safety assessments.

Level 2 fire restrictions remain in effect for all areas of unincorporated Boulder County, officials said. Information about what Level 2 restrictions entail can be found here.

List of properties that are set to reopen Tuesday:

  • Anne U. White
  • Bald Mountain
  • Caribou Ranch
  • Castle Rock climbing area
  • Grassy Top
  • Hall Ranch
  • Hessie trailhead
  • Mud Lake
  • Reynolds Ranch
  • Sugarloaf Mountain
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National Forest Closures due to the fires

Here is an article from Colorado Public Radio about our local National Forest closures.

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Boulder County properties closed due to the fires

Click here for latest information.

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The Time is Nigh for the UPRR / RTD Rail Regional Trail !

Ta Da!!!  It’s been a long time coming, but with your help we may soon have an amazing new trail extending more than 9 miles between Boulder and Erie!

BATCO identified this trail alignment waaaay back in 1996 and we have been carrying it as one of our “Top 10 Trail Projects” ever since.  It would utilize the former Union Pacific Railroad bed and would connect several favorite trails such as Walden/Sawhill Ponds, the East Boulder Trail at Gunbarrel (which in turn may someday be part of the Trail Around Boulder), and a network of trails in the Town of Erie. Boulder County and several partner agencies have been working diligently on this project since 2003.

NOW is the time for all non-motorized trail advocates to support this exciting opportunity!  Please open the following link and familiarize yourself with the project:  Write the Regional Trails Planner Tonya Luebbert at by August 31.  There are also a few opportunities to join a virtual townhall on Aug 26 and 27.

That’s less than two weeks to get your voice heard! GO!

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Recreation in the Time of COVID-19


Our shared open space and parks make Boulder, Boulder. However, during this extraordinary time, please remain at home as much as possible and avoid visiting crowded open space and park areas.?Please share this important message with our community. 

We recognize that outdoor recreation, which is allowed under the current stay-at-home order,  is important for helping community members to get through these trying times. However, please, remain at home as much as you can.  

City and Boulder County open space trails are seeing increased usage and a significant number of people who are not following public health orders and guidance to practice physical distancing and wear face coverings when leaving home.

If this continues or if new health guidance is issued, additional park areas and open space trail closures may need to be considered. To ensure that our shared public lands remain safe for everyone, the city would like to share important responsible recreation guidelines that will help protect community members, first responders, and parks and open space maintenance staff.

Please share these important reminders with your friends and your family members. The city requests the cooperation of the public to maintain more than 6 feet of physical distancing, follow face covering guidelines, and avoid unnecessary travel to limit the spread of COVID-19 and to flatten the curve. Community members are also asked to adhere to open space and parks management efforts, including forthcoming measures like one-way travel for popular open space trails.

Think twice before you recreate

  • Don’t forget. Follow stay-at-home orders and protect each other.
  • Stay home as much as possible, and do not go into public if you are sick.
  • If you still plan to recreate, go with members of your family or your household only.
  • Plan to wear face coverings — even in open space and parks areas.
  • Avoid travel and unnecessary car rides. Visit areas as close to home as possible.
  • Avoid busy open space trails and trailheads. If you do visit open space, leave early or arrive late to avoid crowds. If a parking lot is full, move on.
  • Protect open space rangers, police officers, firefighters, medical personnel and parks maintenance staff. Don’t take any risks.

Access city information resources

If you still plan to visit

  • Keep the space” in open space and our parks. Stay more than 6 feet away from anyone not in your household. That is about the length of a bicycle or a pair of skis.
  • Don’t forget to bring a face covering to help protect others.
  • Stay on open space trails and walk through mud but step off the trail to let others pass.
  • Hike and bike single file to allow physical distancing. Announce yourself when passing others from behind.
  • Remove your trash and pick up after your dog.
  • Due to increased visitation, leashes are encouraged in Voice and Sight areas.
  • Leave park equipment untouched. Wash your hands. Cover coughs and sneezes into your elbows. Don’t shake hands.


Community members can access the latest coronavirus and recreation information from the city by:

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Vote to Make the Boulder City Council Trail-Friendly!

Every trail, every management plan, all the funding to do maintenance or buy parcels to allow for a regional trail – all of these things come down to votes made by people we elect. So, it’s very important to elect people who will support recreation and access to public lands!  And now, it’s time to elect new members of the Boulder City Council.

As a 501(c)(3) organization, BATCO can’t endorse candidates. However, we are a member of the Boulder Public Lands Coalition (BPLC) which has sent a questionnaire about Open Space and recreation to all Boulder City Council candidates. Ten of the candidates responded;  please read their responses here.

We urge you to do some research and VOTE!

You can still register to vote and vote in person up to Nov 5.

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Heil Valley Ranch Corral Trailhead and new trails grand opening celebration

Boulder County, Colo. – Boulder County Board of Commissioners and Parks & Open Space staff will host a ribbon-cutting ceremony at Heil Valley Ranch, located northwest of Boulder. Staff will be celebrating the completion of the Corral trailhead and connected trails, as well as the opening of the brand new Grindstone Quarry trail, an equestrian parking lot, and the restored historical Altona School.

What: Ribbon-cutting ceremony for Corral Trailhead and new trails
When: Wednesday, Oct. 9, 4 p.m.
Where: Heil Valley Ranch Corral Trailhead, 250 Geer Canyon Rd.

Members of the public are encouraged to attend the event, enjoy the new trails, and explore the one-room schoolhouse. Staff will be on hand to talk about the new additions and improvements.

BATCO has been actively involved in developing this new trail system, including organizing several trail work days and donating a substantial sum toward the new equestrian parking lot from revenues on the sales of our Trails and Recreation Map of Boulder County.

The new trails bring the trail miles at Heil Valley Ranch to 19.5 and Heil Valley Ranch now comprises just over 6,230 acres. Because of sensitive wildlife habitat at Heil Valley Ranch, dogs are not permitted.  The Grindstone Quarry Trail (east side of the valley) is a pedestrian/equestrian-only trail.

For more information about Heil Valley Ranch and directions, go to


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