Forum
Buying gear? Please use these links to help 14ers.com:

More info...

Other ways to help...

Stupid Boulder Watershed

Colorado 13er questions, conditions, and other info should be posted here. Also includes topics related to 13ers.com. 13er Trip Reports
User avatar
Posts: 793
Joined: Mon Jun 18, 2007 9:30 am
Location: Fort Collins

Stupid Boulder Watershed

Postby 12ersRule » Fri Aug 03, 2012 1:12 pm

Just looking at my list of Front Range 13ers left, the only ones that are the least bit problematic are the Boulder Watershed ones, and those are only an issue because of Byzantine (borrowed from Roach) policies of the city of Boulder.

I've read somewhere that CMC used to do an annual trip to visit the Boulder Watershed peaks. Does this ever happen anymore?

Who "defends" this watershed? How would someone like me get hired to "defend" the watershed?

User avatar
Posts: 1118
Joined: Tue Feb 26, 2008 2:55 pm
Location: Longmont

Re: Stupid Boulder Watershed

Postby Brian C » Fri Aug 03, 2012 1:17 pm

I'll go hike them with you.
Brian in the Wild
Lists of John
"Nature never did betray the heart that loved her." - Wordsworth

User avatar
Posts: 582
Joined: Fri Aug 07, 2009 2:02 pm
Location: Golden, CO

Re: Stupid Boulder Watershed

Postby Monster5 » Fri Aug 03, 2012 1:24 pm

I've tried to do the completely legal routine before and requested information on access/options. One person claimed to forward my name to the sheriff's department simply for asking. The more reasonable reply from a nicer lady, though I doubt she read my full email considering the cut-and-paste reply, was:

The summit of Arikaree and all of Kiowa are located within the City of Boulder Watershed, which is closed to public access. Unauthorized trespass is subject to prosecution. Researchers can apply for access to the watershed if they can demonstrate that the research can't be conducted elsewhere (the deadline for applying this year was April 15th). See the following CU Mountain Research Station webpage for information on the process: http://www.colorado.edu/mrs/prospective-researchers


She made it clear that it is only open to researchers. Note that the students stay at a shelter on the tamer portion of Niwot ridge and have been known to turn hikers around, making it risky to pass through that area during summer.

A friend of mine might do a bit of work up there - they claim that if one were to hypothetically get lost on their way to Navajo, Sunday, Monday, or Fall-Spring would be low risk with nobody around to call security to assist the lost party.
"The road to alpine climbing is pocked and poorly marked, ending at an unexpectedly closed gate 5 miles from the trailhead." - MP user Beckerich

User avatar
Posts: 47
Joined: Sun Jun 12, 2011 8:37 am
Location: Boulder, Colorado

Re: Stupid Boulder Watershed

Postby mattb528 » Fri Aug 03, 2012 1:40 pm

I'm a researcher who works on Niwot Ridge. I don't know of anyone who would actually report you for being up there without permission. There are so many different projects up there that a new face wouldn't raise any suspicion of trespassing either. I've never seen any authorities lurking around that area too.

User avatar
Posts: 47
Joined: Sun Jun 12, 2011 8:37 am
Location: Boulder, Colorado

Re: Stupid Boulder Watershed

Postby mattb528 » Fri Aug 03, 2012 1:43 pm

Also, Wednesday is the busiest day for researchers in the alpine. That could be a good thing to get lost in the crowd or a bad thing because you might be noticed by a lot of other people.

User avatar
Posts: 436
Joined: Sun Jun 26, 2011 9:55 am
Location: Boulder, CO

Re: Stupid Boulder Watershed

Postby jsdratm » Fri Aug 03, 2012 1:44 pm

I have a "friend" who hiked through the Colorado Springs restricted watershed area around Alamagre without issue. If they catch you, just say that you got lost. :wink: Like Monster5 said, if you go in winter you are probably not going to see anyone up there anyway. My "friend" went in early spring and didn't see a single person out there.

User avatar
Posts: 793
Joined: Mon Jun 18, 2007 9:30 am
Location: Fort Collins

Re: Stupid Boulder Watershed

Postby 12ersRule » Fri Aug 03, 2012 1:49 pm

Thanks for all your responses so far! Great stuff!

Brian, yeah, I'll take you up on that. Definitely!

Mattb528, I should probably lose the GPS around my neck and maybe not carry the big backpack, huh? What do you research up there? Thanks!

Posts: 2098
Joined: Wed Jun 17, 2009 4:19 pm

Re: Stupid Boulder Watershed

Postby peter303 » Fri Aug 03, 2012 1:52 pm

Probably fearful after 9-11 that someone will add a chemical that neutralizes the effect of THC. :lol:

User avatar
Posts: 47
Joined: Sun Jun 12, 2011 8:37 am
Location: Boulder, Colorado

Re: Stupid Boulder Watershed

Postby mattb528 » Fri Aug 03, 2012 2:01 pm

All the researchers have big backpacks and GPS so I really don't think it would be too difficult to blend in. I'm not too familiar with the route up the 13ers in the watershed. Would you be starting at the Mountain Research Station? You will definitely pass a lot of researchers that way. I think you can also access them from the Lake Isabelle area (I think), and in that case you might have to hop a fence to get in the watershed. After that you probably wouldn't see many people.

From the 13ers surrounding Lake Isabelle, you can see two buildings on Niwot Ridge. I'm helping a phd student at CU study the effects of nitrogen deposition in the alpine and plant community interactions. We work around 11,800 ft. somewhere in between those two buildings, closer to the one higher up and closer to the 13ers you need. I almost never see people up that high because it's more difficult to get to. Most researchers work on the other side of Niwot Ridge. When were you planning on going? I'll be camping up there from Aug 18-23.

User avatar
Posts: 47
Joined: Sun Jun 12, 2011 8:37 am
Location: Boulder, Colorado

Re: Stupid Boulder Watershed

Postby mattb528 » Fri Aug 03, 2012 2:03 pm

OneArmSteve wrote:Don't leave any evidence you were there!
http://www.14ers.com/phpBB3/viewtopic.php?f=4&t=36535&hilit=Poop



That reminds me, if you do end up on Niwot Ridge, stay on the trail when there is one, and if there isn't one, watch your step. There are research projects all over the place and some of them are difficult to see until you are standing in the middle of one.

User avatar
Posts: 436
Joined: Sun Jun 26, 2011 9:55 am
Location: Boulder, CO

Re: Stupid Boulder Watershed

Postby jsdratm » Fri Aug 03, 2012 2:08 pm

mattb528 wrote:All the researchers have big backpacks and GPS so I really don't think it would be too difficult to blend in. I'm not too familiar with the route up the 13ers in the watershed. Would you be starting at the Mountain Research Station? You will definitely pass a lot of researchers that way. I think you can also access them from the Lake Isabelle area (I think), and in that case you might have to hop a fence to get in the watershed. After that you probably wouldn't see many people.

From the 13ers surrounding Lake Isabelle, you can see two buildings on Niwot Ridge. I'm helping a phd student at CU study the effects of nitrogen deposition in the alpine and plant community interactions. We work around 11,800 ft. somewhere in between those two buildings, closer to the one higher up and closer to the 13ers you need. I almost never see people up that high because it's more difficult to get to. Most researchers work on the other side of Niwot Ridge. When were you planning on going? I'll be camping up there from Aug 18-23.


Do you have any pictures of these research stations and projects? It sounds pretty interesting.

User avatar
Posts: 703
Joined: Tue Jun 27, 2006 7:46 am
Location: Denver

Re: Stupid Boulder Watershed

Postby rickinco123 » Fri Aug 03, 2012 2:14 pm

So is it illegal to ski on Niwot Ridge?

Next

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 3 guests