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Fees for South Colony Basin

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

Postby Jim Davies » Wed May 19, 2010 3:45 pm

I doubt if a privy would work there, unless they put it inside the wilderness area (which is illegal). There are campsites both at the end of the road and around the creek below the lakes, and a privy close enough to the creek sites would be inside the wilderness, and not accessible to vehicles for installation or servicing.

On the other hand, putting a solar composting privy at the end of the (closed) road would be legal, and it should help. If I'm reading my maps right, the road is outside the wilderness area all the way to the old mine.
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Re: Fees for South Colony Basin

Postby MountainHiker » Wed May 19, 2010 4:02 pm

I donate to CFI each year. I donate to this site. I also donate to a few SAR groups and to Big City Mountaineers. When there’s a donation pole at a trail head I usually drop in a few dollars. I appreciate when there is an outhouse. I can think of a few other trailheads like Quandary and Sherman that could stand to have outhouses. I don’t mind contributing to what I am part of. I would gladly chip in $5 per vehicle for an outhouse at South Colony and various other trail heads.

But I’m concerned about there being an overnight fee at an “improved” trailhead. I have this fear of a finite number of designated campsites with picnic tables, fire rings, fences and “no-parking, no-camping, closed for restoration” signs. Forget getting a site unless you arrive just as someone pulled out. Maybe this fear is unfounded, but this is what I’m afraid of.

When people arrive at an unimproved trail head area they tend to be neighborly. They will point out tent sites they saw when they were looking where to pitch their tent. When people pay for designated campsites they see other people as someone who can look somewhere else.

My fear isn’t the fee so much as the impact it will have on the ability to go there. We already have three locations which require restricted advance planning:
Culebra – privately owned.
Longs – reserve the Boulder Field months in advance or arrive before 2:00 am to get a parking spot.
Bells – reserve a campsite months in advance or play the parking lot game.

I can deal with chipping in for some “improvements”. I just don’t want my ability to plan around the weather and work schedules to get Cali-fornicated on another group of mountains.
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Re: Fees for South Colony Basin

Postby Papillon » Wed May 19, 2010 4:52 pm

MountainHiker wrote:I have this fear of a finite number of designated campsites with picnic tables, fire rings, fences and “no-parking, no-camping, closed for restoration” signs.


They had a bunch of those finished up there last September. And I'm not talking about the ones at the end of the road. They had many already built along the road from the rainbow TH onward. They all had the big square platform a la Moraine Park in RMNP, nice mulch base, fire ring, etc. At the time, I couldn't understand why anyone would put forth the effort to build these things so far down from the upper TH but it all makes sense now. $20 to sleep along that bug-infested road, somebody better tuck me in every night...

Do you think the manitou foundation (landowner around the cottonwood creek portal) is beginning to sweat about a possible invasion?
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Re: Fees for South Colony Basin

Postby tmathews » Wed May 19, 2010 11:53 pm

Papillon wrote:Do you think the manitou foundation (landowner around the cottonwood creek portal) is beginning to sweat about a possible invasion?


Steve Bonowski has been really great about updating us about negotiations the CMC has been making with the Forest Service and the Manitou Foundation: http://www.14ers.com/phpBB3/viewtopic.php?f=3&t=8558&start=15#p292971

It may yet be possible the public to access to the Crestones through Cottonwood Creek once again in the future. The trailhead just may need to be relocated further to the north, off of the Foundation's property (I believe only the first few hundred yards or so of the trail is actually on their property). All they want is to preserve the peace and tranquility around the property because people travel from all over the world to worship many religions there. As responsible mountaineers, we need to respect all private land owners and not make them sweat about unnecessary things -- or they will never trust anyone. They granted me access last summer, so a friend and I were able to climb the Crestones from Cottonwood Creek. It's a pretty neat trail, but needs a lot of maintenance since it hasn't been well-traveled in years.

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Re: Fees for South Colony Basin

Postby Papillon » Thu May 20, 2010 8:17 am

tmathews wrote:Steve Bonowski has been really great about updating us about negotiations the CMC has been making with the Forest Service and the Manitou Foundation: http://www.14ers.com/phpBB3/viewtopic.php?f=3&t=8558&start=15#p292971


Thanks for posting this. I'm well aware of Mr. Bonowski's efforts, as well as the CMCs in regards to lands access issues. I'm just wondering if something like what is developing at south colony right now may figuratively change the landscape at cottonwood creek. On paper, The Peak and The Needle are easier from the cottonwood side because Broken Hand Pass can be avoided. However, it involves a backpack. Up until last fall, one with a high clearance vehicle could turn those peaks into day trips with a car camp at south colony. With fees being kicked around, it seems pretty apparent that most people would then flock to cottonwood (I may be wrong). And it is my understanding that cottonwood was closed a while back due to irresponsible actions by hikers/climbers/backpackers.
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Re: Fees for South Colony Basin

Postby Dan England » Thu May 20, 2010 9:08 am

Here's my take on it for the Greeley Tribune. What do you guys think?



http://www.greeleytribune.com/article/20100520/READERS/100519615/1025&parentprofile=1025

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Re: Fees for South Colony Basin

Postby Jim Davies » Thu May 20, 2010 9:13 am

Dan England wrote:Here's my take on it for the Greeley Tribune. What do you guys think?

I like the "flexible permit" idea (kind of a season pass), but of course the No-Fee Coalition guys think access should always be free.

It's a tough situation, but you really have to wonder how the FS decided that South Colony (with a few thousand visitors per year) is overused, but, say, Guanella Pass (with tens of thousands) is still OK without a fee.
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Re: Fees for South Colony Basin

Postby Wentzl » Thu May 20, 2010 9:28 am

Sailfast appears to be a real douchbag. The fee proposal sucks.

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Re: Fees for South Colony Basin

Postby bonehead » Thu May 20, 2010 9:49 am

Dan England wrote:Here's my take on it for the Greeley Tribune. What do you guys think?



http://www.greeleytribune.com/article/20100520/READERS/100519615/1025&parentprofile=1025


Since you asked:
"Oregon charges for a permit up Mount Rainier".
Now THAT is a novel and creative Revenue Enhancement idea.

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Re: Fees for South Colony Basin

Postby Jim Davies » Thu May 20, 2010 9:52 am

Hey, maybe Colorado could start charging for Rainier too. :D
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Re: Fees for South Colony Basin

Postby bonehead » Thu May 20, 2010 9:54 am

Jim Davies wrote:Hey, maybe Colorado could start charging for Rainier too. :D


You're Quick
Last edited by bonehead on Thu May 20, 2010 10:02 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Fees for South Colony Basin

Postby mattpayne11 » Thu May 20, 2010 9:56 am

One does have to wonder how these things are decided, considering Grays and Torreys, etc are all used a lot more frequently than South Colony. My assumption is that there must be considerable damage to the ecosystem in the area and that any fee would be implemented in the hopes of curtailing those damages and to generate revenue to amend the situation. Any thoughts?

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