Word has it that Big Foot will walk about in Roxborough State Park on June 8 (10 a.m. to 3 p.m.) on a mission to remind visitors to “Leave No Trace” at this gorgeous nearby spot in Douglas …
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Roxborough State Park is at 4751 E. Roxborough Drive, in the Roxborough area southwest of Littleton. All state parks have an admission charge — $8 a day at Roxborough (per car). If no one is at the gate, use the credit card machine at the entrance. Or get an annual pass for $80 and visit all our parks in the system, including the very beautiful Castlewood Canyon State Park near Franktown and close-by Chatfield State Park. While Roxborough and Castlewood are daytime use only, many others have camping facilities.
Word has it that Big Foot will walk about in Roxborough State Park on June 8 (10 a.m. to 3 p.m.) on a mission to remind visitors to “Leave No Trace” at this gorgeous nearby spot in Douglas County.
Volunteers Mike Thomas of Centennial and Sally Anderson, interpretive services manager Angel Tobin and others have joined forces to share the principles of the Leave No Trace movement, which started as an effort to convince backcountry users to leave a place as clean as they found it. The emphasis has moved to all open space, everywhere (aka “Front Country”).
Thomas, an optimistic and positive man, next hopes to spread the idea to other state parks and eventually to all parks — everywhere … (The legendary Big Foot leaves only footprints in the landscape.) Leave No Trace Center for Outdoor Ethics is a nationally recognized organization established in Boulder.
Volunteers hope the program will minimize the negative impacts on Roxborough’s unique geology, with rock formations that include up-thrusts of red rock, hiking trails for almost all capabilities, diverse flora and fauna and spectacular vistas. They also hope it will minimize what Thomas called “social trails” (those created off-trail by visitors).
“Big Foot Goin’ to Rock the Rox” will include games, hikes, Big Foot sightings, photo ops and other activities that teach the Leave no Trace principles — which should apply to all who enjoy the “Front Country” as well:
Plan ahead and prepare.
Travel and camp on durable surfaces.
Dispose of waste properly.
Minimize campfire impacts.
Leave what you find.
Be considerate of other visitors.
In addition to Big Foot’s presence from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., Colorado Parks and Wildlife’s “Talon” will be on hand — and Robin Roberts from Sasquatch Investigations of the Rockies.
Big Foot, Sasquatch, Yeti, Skunk Ape, the Grassman are all legendary types who inhabit the imaginary worlds where Big Foot originates.
We greatly enjoyed a recent golf cart tour with Thomas and Anderson on the Fountain Valley Trail at Roxborough, which is a day-use-only site with a program of hikes, bird walks and events that emphasize the park’s truly unique geological features. See the website at cpw.state.co.us/placestogo/parks/Roxborough for information and to pre-register for specific programs. Cart tours are scheduled at times for those who are not able to hike, but access the trails if possible — they vary in length and are really special.
Nine different routes are shown on the park map, ranging from easy through moderate to strenuous.
Check at the visitors center before you launch … and for information about wildlife watching. (Bring binoculars.)
Wildlife includes a variety of birds, mule deer (we noted them contentedly grazing near the entrance), black bears, mountain lions, bobcats, golden eagles and more. A flock of turkey vultures circled above a high red rock wall as we drove by. Birdsongs were numerous and varied.
Roxborough is a designated Colorado Natural Area and National Natural Landmark, with its 300 million-year-old red sandstone Fountain Formations that tilt at a 60-degree angle.
Thomas recommends that if all possible, readers plan their visits during the week, since weekends become quite crowded.
Roxborough Rambles, the newsletter, is available at the visitors center desk — and online. It details upcoming programs such as the recent Wildflower Weekend and, for early birds, timing for sunrise park openings (5 a.m. on June 22 is next.)
Reservations are handled by Eventbrite, explained on the website: cpw.state.co.us/placestogo/parks/Roxborough.
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