Boulder County Parks & Open Space (BCPOS) announced on October 2 that the Coalton trailhead and trail and Meadowlark trail will be closed starting Oct. 9 until “early” 2024 for trail improvements and cattle grazing. The full Dirty Bismarck loop will not be accessible during this time.
So there’s a bit to unpack here with two different projects. First, the Coalton trail will be resurfaced with recycled asphalt (like the treatment Meadowlark received last year) with some minor alignment adjustments. BCPOS staff evaluated alternative routes to the existing fall line trail and “…it was determined to be too disruptive to the sensitive surrounding grasslands and associated wildlife species.” BMA has inquired about a parallel singletrack to the 10′ path and has been told that there is no space in the trail corridor for this option due to habitat and wildlife constraints. Learn more about this project.
Also, Meadowlark will be closed for cattle grazing. From BCPOS, “the property’s agricultural tenant will be grazing a cattle herd through December. Grazing is an important element supporting grassland ecosystem health and can decrease fire danger. The area will be closed to avoid conflicts between cattle and trail users.” You may remember that a runner was seriously injured this spring in a cow incident. Cows graze year-round in South Boulder open spaces managed by both the city and county, BCPOS noted, “some trail user incidents with a specific herd this year.” Check out this guide from the City of Boulder on responsible recreation around cows.
BMA is in discussions with BCPOS about potential future trail closures or impacts with regard to cattle grazing and their communication of various closures. Project updates can be found on the BCPOS Coalton trail page, and comments and questions may be directed to email@example.com.
The Oerman-Roche trailhead will remain open and access to Mayhoffer-Singletree will remain open.