BMA and City of Boulder Open Space and Mountain Parks (OSMP) will be repairing the Community Ditch (sometimes referred to as Marshall Valley or Crowdy Draw) at Marshall Mesa trail this September. This project will take 1-2 months, and there will not be any trail closures/detours during this time.
Beau Clark, OSPM Trails & Volunteer Specialist, explains the project:
The original trail follows an old mining road grade and the trail has widened, trenched, braided and eroded in the years since BMA (then called the Boulder Offroad Alliance) and OSMP built the trail in 1992 and 1993.
The trail crosses a wetland area and water has been running down the trail instead of down the hill to the natural wetlands area. Because the historic road grade is on a fall line (meaning mostly straight downhill), any repairs to the current alignment would be temporary.
OSMP installed a metal drain that has not been effective in keeping water off the trail.
The project goal is to repair damaged trail and maintain the fun parts of this section. Mountain bikers particularly enjoy the big rock step up near the tree near the top of the mesa. We will look at moving this rock to the new section of trail, but if it is bedrock, we will look into bringing in other big rocks for an alternative line feature on the new trail section.
The section at the top of the mesa from the Crowdy Draw intersection to the lake is completely braided. We will pick one line, close the other and add grade reversals (aka HUCKS) to repair this trail section in place.
The Community Ditch project will have 3 components:
1 – BMA and OSMP will construct .3 miles of new trail to bypass the degraded area. The new trail segment will be FLOWY with several BERMS in the style of the High Plains reroute BMA led in 2018, and will bypass the wetlands area.
2 – BMA and OSMP will repair the section from the Crowdy Draw intersection to Marshall Lake by adding grade reversals (aka HUCKS) and eliminating trail braids.