Park damage in N. Cheyenne Cañon extensive

Joe Dominguez, Multimedia Journalist - Pueblo Chieftain Bureau , j.dominguez@krdo.com
POSTED: 07:21 PM MDT Sep 18, 2013    UPDATED: 10:36 AM MDT Sep 19, 2013 
Gold Camp Road 2
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. -

The city of Colorado Springs is working on reopening several parks and trails closed because of flooding. So far, almost $4.5 million in repairs have been identified.

The majority of damage can be found in North Cheyenne Cañon Park. The sprawling open space just west of the Broadmoor is home to Helen Hunt Falls and several popular hiking trails, including Mt. Cutler.

The city has identified significant road and trail damage in the park. Cheyenne Creek floodwaters caused erosion, which took out parts of the main road through the park and some trees.

"We are seeing a lot of debris and a lot of trees that are losing their hold on the side of the mountain and are toppling over," said Karen Palus, director of parks, recreation and cultural services for the city.

Four other areas are also closed, including: the Greenway Trail, south of Nevada Avenue and from Treemont Street to Polk Street; Sinton Trail; Palmer Park; and Harlan Wolfe Park.

A small section of Garden of the Gods Park is also closed north of Gateway Road because of flood damage.

The city is asking the public to obey all trail-closed signs and stay out of restricted areas because of unknown dangers.

"We've got a lot of parks that are open, a lot of areas that are safe to use so please heed our park closures so we can make sure they are safe for folks to be out there," said Palus.

The city is hoping avid hikers and trail users can help identify further problems on trails that are open to the public. Parks leaders have asked the public to download their trail system app: GoCoSprings.

Through the app, you can report problems like leaning trees or sinkholes, and the GPS coordinates of the problem are sent to the parks department so officials can easily find those problem spots.

"With the amount of water that we have had through Cheyenne Creek and Camp Creek, we continue to see things that are eroding," said Palus.

There is no timetable for the reopening of any trail or park currently closed except for Palmer Park. Palus said it could reopen by Saturday.