MANITOU SPRINGS, Colo. - UPDATE (Monday, Aug. 29): Authorities said no one has been cited for trespassing on the Manitou Incline in the first week of its closure for repairs.
A helicopter lifted materials and equipment to the construction area Sunday.
(Monday, April 22): The incline in Manitou Springs will be closed for several months while crews make necessary repairs.
Last Monday morning, crews put up a new gate in front of the incline, warning hikers to stay out.
The city of Colorado Springs, in conjunction with the city of Manitou Springs, started the second phase of improvements.
"Stairs are shifting, they're moving, so we need to make those improvements so the incline can be here for the next hundred or so more years," said Sarah Bryarly, landscape architect for Parks Recreation and Cultural services for city of Colorado Springs.
Repairs include improving safety and increased accessibility, but it'll take several months.
"I hate to not be able to do it for all these months through December," said Carl Laws, a hiker.
Laws hikes the incline every Monday and has noticed safety issues.
"I've seen people fall on the incline before, so it's probably a good thing, and if you want a workout, like I said the Barr trail is just as good," Laws said.
If you're caught trespassing, expect a $100 fine.
"We will have police come and monitor the site to make sure people are staying off the incline. People will be given a citation," Bryarly said.
So far, people seem to be paying attention.
"I noticed a lot less people here, but the Barr trail is beautiful. I definitely encourage people to utilize it while the incline is closed," said Caroline Dearman, another hiker.
On a normal day, the parking lot is filled with people using the incline, but now it sits empty until Dec. 2.
On an average day, more than 600 people use the incline. While repairs are being made, crews encourage hikers to utilize nearby trails and to be patient.
"Please stay off the incline. I know it's a temptation; once it gets in your bloodstream it's hard to get it out. We just really ask people if they can stay off the incline the faster our crews work, the sooner they can get the incline back open," Bryarly said.
The project costs $1 million and is funded by a FEMA hazard mitigation grant and open space and parks funding.