South Colony Fees

Colorado 14ers access and fee issues only, please
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traderaaron
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Re: South Colony Fees

Postby traderaaron » Thu May 13, 2010 5:18 pm

I touched on one libertarian or market solution earlier. The Cielo Vista Ranch and Culebra is the closest example in practice, price has an obvious limiting factor on use there I believe. There are no easy answers.

traderaaron wrote:From an economics standpoint it would seem the problem is something that is free and which is not owned by anyone but by everyone is overused.

The simplest solution would be to implement a fee, the price of which would be dictated on the level of use the area can withstand without needing to build national park like infrastructure. Whether that amount is $10 or $100 or some changing variable would be up to the demand by users at each price level. How many are willing to pay $10, too many? Then it would have to increase to a level sufficient to decrease users. The NFS/BLM/National Parks never do this and that's why they have to use costly and time consuming reservation and permit systems instead of economic means to ration visitors.

This could be relatively simple (not likely for the FS though) and be structure in a way to avoid the need for reservations, infrastructure and ranger interference I believe.

I know that few like to think of 14ers in terms of pure economics as a way to manage resources but it may be the best option there is?
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Re: South Colony Fees

Postby MountainHiker » Thu May 13, 2010 7:26 pm

traderaaron wrote:I touched on one libertarian or market solution earlier. The Cielo Vista Ranch and Culebra is the closest example in practice, price has an obvious limiting factor on use there I believe. There are no easy answers.

traderaaron wrote:From an economics standpoint it would seem the problem is something that is free and which is not owned by anyone but by everyone is overused.

The simplest solution would be to implement a fee, the price of which would be dictated on the level of use the area can withstand without needing to build national park like infrastructure. Whether that amount is $10 or $100 or some changing variable would be up to the demand by users at each price level. How many are willing to pay $10, too many? Then it would have to increase to a level sufficient to decrease users. The NFS/BLM/National Parks never do this and that's why they have to use costly and time consuming reservation and permit systems instead of economic means to ration visitors.

This could be relatively simple (not likely for the FS though) and be structure in a way to avoid the need for reservations, infrastructure and ranger interference I believe.

I know that few like to think of 14ers in terms of pure economics as a way to manage resources but it may be the best option there is?

Privatization is not the answer. The big money that could buy this land wouldn’t do it to collect fees from hikers. They could never recover their investment. They would do it to drill, dig, log, or turn it into a private paradise for billionaires -No trespassers. Our one privately owned fee-to-climb fourteener costs $100, plus an extra $50 for Red, and that’s basically done as a favor. Other private land on and around fourteeners has lead to access issues, as in no access. So back to complaining about $20!
Red, Rugged, and Rotten: The Elk Range - Borneman & Lampert
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Re: South Colony Fees

Postby dannymiller15 » Thu May 13, 2010 8:33 pm

The link below shows the proposed permit and fee area (from the USFS website).

http://www.fs.fed.us/r2/psicc/sanc/South_Colony_Fee_Area.pdf

The new fee area definitely includes the summits of Crestone Peak, Crestone Needle and Humboldt Peak including the traverse, and the final approaches from all directions. Does this mean that you need a permit when accessing from the Cottonwood Creek Approach or Spanish Creek Approach?
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Re: South Colony Fees

Postby elkheart22 » Fri May 14, 2010 5:44 am

Bean wrote:
elkheart22 wrote:Good question, what is the alternative?
Obviously, we, as hikers & climbers can't, or won't, regulate ourselves. So, somebody has to do it for us.
The last 20 years the South Colony Basin has become nothing more than a
defacated-enhanced, enviromental nightmare.
I don't like closures & fees anymore than anybody else. However, nobody has yet to
come up with a better solution.
We're basically loving our mountains to death.

Since when does everything have to be regulated?

As I suggested, drop a composting toilet in and be done with it. That seems to work well enough for countless other trailheads, why is an empire required?

And people really need to stop with the "loving the mountains to death" nonsense. We aren't. They have been here for a very long time. They will be here a long time after we're gone. The only mountains that are truly being "loved to death" are the ones getting the tops blown off for coal extraction, or those being completely eradicated for mining of other minerals.


Yes, the mountains will be here long after we are gone. Poor choice of words on my part. The issue is the
South Colony Basin. A Compost toilet at the trailhead is a great idea, however, I don't think anybody would want to lose
elevation just to take a crap.
Thousands of people desending upon a small basin in a short amount of time is the problem, I think
Zacob might have the best solution: simple make the whole range wilderness. Only the most sturdy will
want to pack in. This would also limit access by SAR, so if you go in, you're on your own.
Lakes below the mountains
Flow into the sea
Like oils applied to canvas,
They permeate through me. --- Jimmy Buffett
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Re: South Colony Fees

Postby BillMiddlebrook » Fri May 14, 2010 5:57 am

I wonder if a full road closure was on the table when they decided to gate it half way up? Closing the ENTIRE road and putting up an established TH at the very bottom (8,800' - 9,000') may have been a good option. Not necessarily good for people that didn't want to walk the road, but it certainly would reduce the overall numbers in SC Lakes Basin.

I'd almost rather see that vs. construction and fees at the current, upper trailhead (9,950').
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Re: South Colony Fees

Postby elkheart22 » Fri May 14, 2010 7:54 am

BillMiddlebrook wrote:I wonder if a full road closure was on the table when they decided to gate it half way up? Closing the ENTIRE road and putting up an established TH at the very bottom (8,800' - 9,000') may have been a good option. Not necessarily good for people that didn't want to walk the road, but it certainly would reduce the overall numbers in SC Lakes Basin.

I'd almost rather see that vs. construction and fees at the current, upper trailhead (9,950').


Agreed...
Lakes below the mountains
Flow into the sea
Like oils applied to canvas,
They permeate through me. --- Jimmy Buffett
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Re: South Colony Fees

Postby Presto » Fri May 14, 2010 7:56 am

by elkheart22 » Fri May 14, 2010 8:54 am

BillMiddlebrook wrote:
I wonder if a full road closure was on the table when they decided to gate it half way up? Closing the ENTIRE road and putting up an established TH at the very bottom (8,800' - 9,000') may have been a good option. Not necessarily good for people that didn't want to walk the road, but it certainly would reduce the overall numbers in SC Lakes Basin.

I'd almost rather see that vs. construction and fees at the current, upper trailhead (9,950').

Agreed...


I'll second that "agreed".
As if none of us have ever come back with a cool, quasi-epic story instead of being victim to tragic rockfall, a fatal stumble, a heart attack, an embolism, a lightning strike, a bear attack, collapsing cornice, some psycho with an axe, a falling tree, carbon monoxide, even falling asleep at the wheel getting to a mountain. If you can't accept the fact that sometimes "s**t happens", then you live with the illusion that your epic genius and profound wilderness intelligence has put you in total and complete control of yourself, your partners, and the mountain. How mystified you'll be when "s**t happens" to you! - FM
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Re: South Colony Fees

Postby Floyd » Fri May 14, 2010 7:59 am

BillMiddlebrook wrote:I wonder if a full road closure was on the table when they decided to gate it half way up? Closing the ENTIRE road and putting up an established TH at the very bottom (8,800' - 9,000') may have been a good option. Not necessarily good for people that didn't want to walk the road, but it certainly would reduce the overall numbers in SC Lakes Basin.

I'd almost rather see that vs. construction and fees at the current, upper trailhead (9,950').


Saw this after I replied to the forest service fee thread (they are kind of blending into one another). Couldn't agree more.
"Athletes express themselves physically, this is their art. As an athlete, exhausting oneself on the field or or on the track or on the trail or on the mountain brings calm and satisfaction. Thrashing about… our expression." - Steve Gleason
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Re: South Colony Fees

Postby Bean » Fri May 14, 2010 8:12 am

I like that idea far more than added fees.

Submit your thoughts here: http://www.fs.fed.us/r2/psicc/contact/feedback/index.shtml
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Re: South Colony Fees

Postby sailfast » Fri May 14, 2010 9:25 pm

Re: Fees for South Colony Basin
by sailfast » Fri May 14, 2010 10:05 pm

Don't you think it is time for all users of public trails on Colorado's 14ers to start paying their way. The conditions of the trails on many of the closer 14ers are apalling, and the forrest service seems to have no budget for trail maintenance these days. Hunters and fisherman already pay to play via license fees, as well as contributing to the state search and rescue fund. I would be in favor of a fund generated by user fees to pay for access, trail maintenance, law enforcement (dogs running loose), and environmental remediation of trail damage.
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Re: South Colony Fees

Postby JeffR » Fri May 14, 2010 9:59 pm

sailfast wrote:Re: Fees for South Colony Basin
by sailfast » Fri May 14, 2010 10:05 pm

Don't you think it is time for all users of public trails on Colorado's 14ers to start paying their way. The conditions of the trails on many of the closer 14ers are apalling, and the forrest service seems to have no budget for trail maintenance these days. Hunters and fisherman already pay to play via license fees, as well as contributing to the state search and rescue fund. I would be in favor of a fund generated by user fees to pay for access, trail maintenance, law enforcement (dogs running loose), and environmental remediation of trail damage.

Wow. You didn't even bother removing the "Re:" from your cross-posting.

Piss off, loser.
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Re: South Colony Fees

Postby sailfast » Fri May 14, 2010 10:05 pm

Sorry, I posted this in another thread before discovering this one. Piss off does not sound like much of a dialog on an important issue.

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