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Adopters do important work in their sections of trail, which range from 1.6 to 16.8 miles.

Some do the work alone 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, rake and hoe silt and debris out of the water diversions to limit erosion, assess the signage, and report their work and findings. Adopters make sure the trail is passable for hikers, cyclists, and horseback riders.

We’d love to have YOU join in the tradition that built and maintained this 567-mile trail by becoming a CTF Adopter!  We currently have 4 sections open for adoption. To inquire, and for more information, email the CTF Field Operations Manager, Darin Radatz,

Volunteer adopters working on the Colorado Trail

Volunteer adopters working on the Colorado Trail.

Snapshot: Adopters 2022

    • Three successful new Adopter Trainings
    • Eight additional trainings with current Adopters
    • 206 volunteers including Adopters, helpers, and training attendees
    • 2550 volunteer hours and counting


    • Maintained the entire 567 miles of the Colorado Trail
    • Over 600 trees cleared
    • Over 1,000 existing drains cleared
    • Over 150 new drains installed
    • Reported Trail conditions to the CTF for planning & USFS coordination

A Few 2022 Adopter Notes and Photos:

Section 1.1 Kristen and Joe Tonsager

Work accomplished: Volunteers rebuilt 3 switchbacks, cut 15 trees, and constructed 10 new drains.

Section 5.1 Dawn Zalone

Work accomplished: Volunteers cut 45 trees, cleared 100 feet of brush or limbs, and cleaned 20 drains.

Adopter notes: We hiked the trail this time from Rock Creek to Long Gulch. This allowed us to chat with many hikers. They were all very gracious and thanked us repeatedly for our work on the trail. Many were thru hikers. And I couldn’t believe how many were hiking alone!

In the fall we did a walk through to admire the aspens. Removed 23 trees that could’ve been future fallen trees.

Section 6.1 Carla Coleman and Heather Williams 

Added signage to trees, cut 31 trees, constructed 37 drains, built 6 new cairns Adopter notes: As our first official event as the new stewards of this section, we had a large group of volunteers and used this opportunity to train everyone on all types of trail work.

Section 6.3 Denise and Brian McManus

Work accomplished: Volunteers cut 19 trees and replaced a missing foot rail on a bridge.

Adopter notes: Discovered a fallen tree issue. The trees are very high above our heads and one very large tree is just teetering at the break. We don’t feel comfortable in cutting these trees down. It looks like about 4 of them on top of each other.

Section 7.2 Patrick Murray

Work accomplished: Volunteers maintained 15 drains and moved rocks above and below the new bridge.

Section CW04B David Kuhn

Work accomplished: Volunteers cut over 120 trees, installed new trail markers, cleaned 30 drains, debermed over 30 feet of trail.

Adopter notes: Beginning of season – The tree situation is extreme. I removed 59 trees in just 1.8 miles of trail from the Boss Lake Trailhead to mile 14.1. I had to leave 4 large trees in this same stretch due to their size. I only had a 3 foot saw which was to small for the job. I will return next week with a 6 foot saw and a helper to remove these 4 trees. I still have 5+ miles of forested trail to clear. I would estimate another 100+ trees need to be clearedbased on the less than 2 miles that I already tackled. While working I conversed with 10- 12 CDT thru hikers. They were much appreciative of the clearing I was doing and they all commented on how frequently they were encountering downed trees in Colorado. I will probably not be able to do any drain cleaning or construction this year, the tree clearing will take all my time. End of season – This entire section is now clear of downed trees andopen. There are some snow patches above timberline on both sides of Chalk Pass that are easily negotiated without danger. Thanks to help from fellow CT Adopter Mike Fischer and CT Field Operations Manager Darin Radatz. A total of 103 trees have been removed from this section in the past 8 days. Two more CDT through hikers were encountered today but still no CT thru hikers seen.

Section 24.2 Connie Wian

Work accomplished: Moved rocks and boulders in the Elk Creek Walkway (formally Don Kelly Trail) to help hikers safely cross the creek.

Section CW04A Jeff Erion

Work accomplished: assisted with new trail bypass above Alpine Tunnel.

Adopter notes: The work completed by the crew was outstanding. Even the daily rain, thunder and lightning could not stop them for accomplishing goals. The new section of trail looks fantastic, and I am proud to claim it as my adopted section. Also, the corridor clearing along several hundred feet of the railroad bed was work that would have taken me many days to do myself. Now my time can be focused on other priorities. Super effort by all.