Skip to main content

Adopters are the front line volunteers caring for The Colorado Trail. They ‘take on’ the responsibility of their section and do the annual maintenance on it. Some do the work themselves and some assemble a group for the outing. Visiting as soon as they can after the snow melts in late Spring, they cut and remove fallen trees clearing the trail, rake and hoe silt & debris out of the water diversions to limit erosion, assess the signage, and report their work and findings. They enjoy their outings immensely and develop a sense of ownership.

The program has grown. In 2004 there were 58 Adopter sections. Now in 2014, due to section splits and the addition of the 80-mile CT Collegiate West, the number of Adopter sections has risen to 79. Adopters make sure the trail is passable for hikers, cyclists, and horseback riders.

According to program coordinator Janet Farrar, “at summer’s end three sections were open needing an Adopter: Sargents Mesa to Razor Creek (17.1, 10.8 miles), Razor Creek to Lujan Creek Road (17.2, 9.6 miles), and Spring Creek Pass to San Luis Pass (22.1, 8.7 miles). As always, we are so thankful we have such great Adopter volunteers! We couldn’t do all this without you!!!”

Snapshot: Adopters 2014

  • 79 Adopter sections
  • 75 Adopters (one has two sections)
  • 165 Adopter Helpers
  • Section lengths vary from 1.6 miles to 16.8 miles
  • Over 2,200 hours spent on trail work this year alone


  • Maintained the entire 567 miles of the CT
  • Made multiple excursions each summer
  • Cleared the Trail, sawing and removing hundreds of fallen trees
  • Cut back foliage
  • Repaired rockslides
  • Cleaned hundreds of water diversions to preserve the tread and limit Trail erosion
  • Repaired, replaced and added signs, including wooden, steel and confidence markers
  • Reported Trail conditions to the CTF for planning & USFS coordination

Adopter Notes

Section 4.2 Tom Brooksher

There are several culverts that we put on that weren’t installed deep enough. The work we did two years ago in the “little bog” is holding well.

Section 7.1 George Neserke

Around Gold Hill loggers have rather conspicuously destroyed a section of the trail. I can flag the trail for a couple of hundred feet.

Section 8.3 Lee Ashley

Overall the trail seemed in good shape. There was a lot of snow up there this last winter and I thought it might have damaged some of the rock cairns. But everything seemed ok.

Section 8.4 Julie Mesdag

Need a new 4×4 post north of bridge by the rifle range in the middle of Camp Hale.

Section 9.2 Earl Beam

Trail was in good shape. No erosional problems were observed.

Section 12.1 James Luidl

Removed trees to about halfway between 1.8 and 3.8 until snow stopped us.

Section 13.1 Keith Baker

We cleared six downed trees. Four were in a mini-blowdown at .95 miles from Avalanche, one a 2.3 and a final one at 2.9 (just north of the saddle).

Section 15.1 Ann Horner

The CT needs to continue encouraging mountain bikers to stay on the trail rather than establishing new branches.

Section 19.1 Stew Brown

I had to add one signpost, which I had brought along for an emergency, and replanted four other posts that had fallen over or broke off. Only two items of litter…not bad.

Section 20.1 Steve Stadler

Water issues. Have never seen my section this wet. More water this year than normal.

Section 24.1 Seth & Jody Furtney

Recommend marking 4 barren posts with Colorado Trail logo.

Section 25.1 Diana Bristol

From Little Molas Lake to about 5 miles in (almost to Lime Creek) clearing out numerous water bars and fixing or replacing 4 steps.

Section 26.2 Philip and Julie Ayers

The section has suffered some erosion from the extended monsoon season but is still in good condition overall. The section above timberline is somewhat problematic due to soils, routing, and steepness; it is in the worst condition.

Section 27.2 Rob Harries & Jodi Deller

Noticed minor rutting and water bars in need of maintenance. De-berming is warranted on select portions to arrest future rutting.

Section CW02b Tom Easley

Trail is in good condition. Hiker responses are positive. Still have to clear rock regularly from switchback tread on the east side approaching Lake Ann Pass, but the trail is built in a rock glacier, so it will be an ongoing issue.

Section CW03a Mal Sillars

Looking good here…despite the very heavy use. Easily 500/day during the high season. Still plan to check the trail back to Kreutzer’s nose.

Section CW05a Bowie Duncan

Trail south of Chalk Creek Pass is clear to Boss Lake. Further work on boulder field is needed in 2015.