Stratton Open Space Bioblitz

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What’s a bioblitz?

The Colorado Springs Parks, Recreation and Cultural Services department is hosting a bioblitz Friday-Sunday, Aug. 27-29, in Stratton Open Space. Free and open to the public, the event is focused on finding as many species as possible to create a biological census of the area. There will also be guided hikes and family-friendly activity booths set up in the Ridgeway Trailhead parking lot where participants can learn more about the local scientific community, plus wildlife and plants in the Pikes Peak region.

If a guided hike isn’t for you, but you still want to participate in the bioblitz, simply download the iNaturalist app and note your observations over this weekend. The free app maps and helps identify flora, fauna, and fungi. The process is simple: snap a picture or take a recording, then work with the app to identify the plant or animal. All observations in the project area are saved and stored for future analysis. If you don’t know what you found, the iNaturalist community will help identify it for you.

The Trails, Open Space and Parks (TOPS) program started hosting community bioblitzes in 2017 to get a snapshot of biodiversity within parks and open spaces citywide. Over time, these snapshots will be compared to reveal how the areas’ ecosystems are changing and can provide insight into management practices. TOPS is a city sales and use tax that protects and preserves trails, open space and parks citywide. Since 1997, it has preserved nearly 7,200 acres of open space. For more information on TOPS, visit ColoradoSprings.gov/TOPS.

Parking information

The Ridgeway parking lot will be closed for the event from 5 a.m.-2 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. On these days, park visitors should park at Cheyenne Mountain High School (1200 Cresta Road) where there will be a free shuttle to and from the trailhead. Masks are required on the shuttle.

Hike Schedule

All hikes will depart from and return to the Ridgeway Trailhead (1504 Ridgeway Ave). The length of hikes varies from approximately 1 to 1.5 miles. Participants should wear good hiking shoes, bring plenty of water and sun protection. All hikes have a 20 person participant limit and registration is required.

Friday, Aug. 27

Bat Flight Hike

8:30-9:30 PM

Join us for a Bat Flight Hike, an evening with a bat scientist from Colorado Parks & Wildlife.

Register Here

Saturday, Aug. 28

Beginner Birders

8-9:30 AM

Join us for a morning of birding, where we will share a short presentation in the basics of bird identification followed by a hike where we’ll explore the trails for birds. This event is intended for people who have never been birding or know very little about birds. It is a free, family-friendly event, though our furry relatives should remain at home for this one. Be sure to have good walking shoes, appropriate attire for the weather, water, and if you have them, binoculars. We will be using the Merlin Bird ID mobile app during the presentation and recommend it be added to your phone, with the U.S. Rocky Mountains bird pack, prior to the event. It may be useful to revisit during the hike and in your continued birding adventures.

Register Here 

Bug Blitz

10-11 AM

Are creepy crawlers your thing? Or maybe you prefer wings? Either way, join an exciting adventure with an insect scientist!

 Register Here

Hike Like Bigfoot

Noon-1 PM

The Seven Principles of Leave No Trace provide an easily understood framework of minimum impact practices for anyone visiting the outdoors. Although Leave No Trace has its roots in backcountry settings, the Principles have been adapted so that they can be applied anywhere — from remote wilderness areas, to local parks and even in your own backyard. They also apply to almost every recreational activity. Each Principle covers a specific topic and provides detailed information for minimizing impacts. Learn the 7 principles of Leave No Trace so you can hike like Bigfoot!

Register Here 

Sunday, Aug. 29

Beginner Birders

8-9:30 AM

Join us for a morning of birding, where we will share a short presentation in the basics of bird identification followed by a hike where we’ll explore the trails for birds. This event is intended for people who have never been birding or know very little about birds. It is a free, family-friendly event, though our furry relatives should remain at home for this one. Be sure to have good walking shoes, appropriate attire for the weather, water, and if you have them, binoculars. We will be using the Merlin Bird ID mobile app during the presentation and recommend it be added to your phone, with the U.S. Rocky Mountains bird pack, prior to the event. It may be useful to revisit during the hike and in your continued birding adventures.

Register Here

Hiking Scavenger Hunt

10-11 AM

Scavenger hunts are one of the most fun things to do while walking. For this hiking activity, we will have a list of things for your kids to try and find and observe on the trail, such as types of leaves, wildflowers and even paw prints.

Register Here

Event dates

Location Stratton Open Space (map)
1504 Ridgeway Ave
Colorado Springs, CO 80906
Date/Time Friday, August 27, 2021 - 8:30pm to Sunday, August 29, 2021 - 11:00am