Carbondale to Crested Butte trail inches forward
Elected officials from Pitkin and Gunnison counties met in Redstone yesterday to reiterate enthusiasm for a trail connecting Crested Butte and Carbondale.
The proposed 74-mile trail is in the early stages of a complicated development process, but is seeing some progress. Discussions about such a trail began in the 1990s and finally picked up steam this year when Governor Hickenlooper tagged the area on the “16 in 2016” list that identified the state’s highest priority trails.
Dale Will, executive director of Pitkin County Open Space and Trails, said the project is several years out because of complicated permitting processes along the state highway and in the National Forest, and the costs are still unknown.
On the Carbondale side, there is an existing 5-mile, multi-use paved trail, and Will said Gunnison County has reprogrammed an old wagon road that is open almost to the top of Kebler Pass.
The trail will need to roughly follow existing roads because bikes are not allowed into adjacent Wilderness lands.