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The wait is over. After three years of hard work by community volunteers and Town staff, construction of the 2-mile, unpaved, Legacy Trail at Gateway Mesa Open Space is finally complete.
Begun in 2019, and built almost entirely by volunteers, the hiking-only Legacy Trail now connects to the 1.6-mile Chuck’s Loop Trail and leads hikers through the unique northern forested portion of the open space. The trail winds through mature spruce, fir and Ponderosa pine, past several drainages, wetlands, and steep scrub-covered slopes, and opens up to views of interesting rock formations.
The Castle Rock Parks and Recreation Department partnered with Volunteers for Outdoor Colorado, a statewide organization that provides a volunteer workforce for outdoor stewardship projects, to help construct Legacy Trail. From 2019 to 2022, VOC chose to support the Legacy Trail at Gateway Mesa project significantly offsetting costs that would have been incurred if the Town hired a private contractor.
“It’s been wonderful to work with the Town of Castle Rock on this project from start to finish,” said VOC Chief Executive Officer Chris Nesset, “Over 500 VOC volunteers gave nearly 5,000 hours of labor, demonstrating the power of everyday people to leave their own legacy on the outdoors.”
The Castle Rock Parks and Trails Foundation also partnered with the Town securing a single anonymous $10,000 donation designated to help fund Legacy Trail that kicked off the project in 2019. As the nonprofit partner of the Town of Castle Rock Parks and Recreation Department, the Foundation strives to maximize our community's recreational experiences. In 2022 their projects include helping fund the VOC effort for Legacy Trail and the Possibilities Playground at Butterfield Crossing Park.
“Legacy Trail wouldn’t be what it is today if it weren’t for the initiative of a single philanthropic act by one individual who became the catalyst for this project,” said Parks and Recreation Director Jeff Brauer. “This foresight to provide an experience unlike any other in Castle Rock that then spurred the collaboration between Town staff, the Castle Rock Parks and Trails Foundation and VOC is a clear example of the civic dedication that is alive and well in Castle Rock.”
Be among the first to explore the second mile of Legacy Trail featuring impressive rock formations, caves, narrow passages and vast views. Hikers will be treated to unique trail features like rare ferns, hoodoo rock formations, remnants of a crashed pickup, timber steps, a suspended bridge and more. Please note that this trail experience is considered difficult due to the steep, rocky terrain. Learn more and plan your hike at CRgov.com/LegacyTrail.
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