In this issue: 20th Anniversary of Open Spaces Tax
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Horsetooth Mountain Open Space
NR News Issue 21 | April 2016
Hidden Valley Trail Project

Volunteers from Overland Mountain Bike Club, C.A.T.S., Team B.O.B., ASU Alumni Northern Colorado Club and Larimer County kicked off 20th anniversary activities with a trail-building project at Devil's Backbone. Thank you, volunteers! Photo by Joel Schwab.

20th Anniversary Activities Get You into Nature in 2016!

In 2016, we're celebrating 20 years of the Help Preserve Open Spaces sales tax and the impact open spaces have on all of our lives. Fun, free activities on deck for the 20th anniversary include volunteer projects, an educational program series starting in May and a passport program launching this spring!

See further down in this issue of NR News to sign up for activities. Stay tuned to the NR News, or visit for more details, the full schedule of activities and info on Help Preserve Open Spaces.

Read about 20 years of Help Preserve Open Spaces in the Reporter-Herald »

Devil's Backbone Trailhead

Just look at that awesome parking area! The highly popular Devil's Backbone Trailhead reopened in mid-March with more parking spaces. Photo by Meegan Flenniken.

Construction Crews Busy Enhancing Parks, Open Spaces

We've wrapped up some projects, while others are still in progress. Thank you for your patience as we strive to improve your parks and open spaces!

Devil's Backbone Open Space - The expanded parking area reopended in March. Our trail crew and dedicated volunteers are building the new multi-use Hidden Valley Trail, slated to open in May. Read about the trail project »

Lions Open Space - Work to stabilize the riverbank and enhance fish habitat in the Poudre River was completed in April. The Pleasant Valley Trail remains open but rerouted until a damaged section can be fixed this fall. Learn more »

Horsetooth Reservoir - The new information center and maintenance building are really taking shape! Both are scheduled to open this summer. Access is not impacted at this time for visitors to the South Bay area. Learn more »

Soderberg Trailhead - County crews are currently building a new horse trailer parking area at this trailhead, which accesses Horsetooth Mountain Open Space. Temporary closures may happen on weekdays. Learn more »

Horsetooth Boating

Visitors to Horsetooth Reservoir fish for trout, walleye, bass and other species. The reservoir is one of the best places to catch big fish in Colorado. Photo by Harry Strharsky.

Break Out Your Boat! Ramps Open at Horsetooth, Carter

The boating season at Larimer County reservoirs kicked off April 1. Select boat ramps at Horsetooth Reservoir and Carter Lake are now open daily.

Get boat ramp hours, boating safety and ANS inspection information »

Lyse Dzija

Loveland Painter Selected as 2016 Visual Artist

Lyse Dzija has been selected as the Larimer County Department of Natural Resources 2016 Visual Artist. Lyse will create a work of art inspired by Larimer County's parks and open spaces.

An accomplished painter with a studio in Loveland, Lyse said, "I wish to subtly stir the viewer's soul to want to explore the outdoors and realize this is an increasingly fading opportunity. ... The parks and open spaces offer me an opportunity to interpret the moods that nature readily provides."

Read more about Lyse and the Visual Artist Program »

Wildflower Guide

This guide is a compact, user-friendly resource to identify wildflowers and other native, common, showy plants of Larimer County at elevations between 5,000 and 8,000 feet.

Get Our Wildflower Guide in Time for Spring Blooms

Spring is here and the lovely wildflowers of Larimer County are starting to show their colors. Learn to identify flowers and other showy plants you see on the trail with our handy guide that offers photos, tips and more.

Learn more about the wildflower guide and order your copy »

Weed District

The Larimer County Weed District offers guidance on weed management, range and pasture restoration, herbicide sales, brochures and more. Photo by Bobby Goeman.

Summer Hours Start for Weed District, Forestry Program

The Larimer County Weed District and Forestry Program, located at 2649 E. Mulberry St. #6 in Fort Collins, are open 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday. Please call ahead at (970) 498-5768 before visiting.

Fire Scar Restoration

Service projects allow citizens to be a part of conservation in Larimer County. Photo of fire scar restoration work at Hermit Park Open Space in the fall of 2014 by Jeff Andersen.

Volunteers Needed for Fire Restoration, Fence Projects

Fri., April 22, 9 a.m. - 2 p.m., Hermit Park Open Space
Assist in re-establishing native vegetation within fire scars by breaking up soil, broadcasting a seed mix and covering with mulch. Rain date: May 6. Part of the 20th anniversary of Help Preserve Open Spaces project series.

Sun., May 1, 10 a.m. - 2 p.m., Devil's Backbone Open Space
Help with installing smooth wire fence.

Sign up or get info: Pam Mayhew, 970-619-4552,


Learn about the flowers of Larimer County during wildflower walks this May hosted by the Friends of Larimer County Parks and Open Lands. Photo by Mark Yoder.

Upcoming Guided Hikes and Programs

Moon Over My Open Space: Rattlesnakes - April 21 (Thurs.), 7 p.m., Horsetooth Mountain Open Space (waiting list only)

Night Sky Photography Workshop - April 29 (Fri.), 7:30 p.m., Devil's Backbone Open Space (waiting list only)

Tiny Trekkers - May 3 (Tues.), 10 a.m., Devil's Backbone Open Space

Geology Underfoot at the Devil's Backbone - May 6 (Fri.), 10 a.m., Devil's Backbone Open Space

Wildflower Walk with Friends of Larimer County Parks and Open Lands - May 7 (Sat.), 8 a.m., Horsetooth Mountain Open Space

20th Anniversary Program Series: History of Devil's Backbone - May 11 (Wed.), 5:30 p.m., Devil's Backbone Open Space, presented by Ken Jessen

20th Anniversary Program Series: Prehistoric Peoples of Roberts Ranch - May 21 (Sat.), 8:30 a.m., Roberts Ranch Conservation Easement, presented by Dr. Jason Labelle

Wildflower Walk with Friends of Larimer County Parks and Open Lands - May 21 (Sat.), 8 a.m., Devil's Backbone Open Space

Registration opens soon for all May programs.

Information and registration:, or Dan Marotti at (970) 619-4565 or

Masthead photo: Horsetooth Mountain Open Space by Mark Yoder
Copyright © 2016 Larimer County Natural Resources, All rights reserved.

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