COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. – Colorado Springs has been chosen as a Hot Spot by the Leave No Trace Center for Outdoor Ethics. The city is one of ten Hot Spots selected nationwide to participate in this year’s education program. From Oct. 14-18, a Leave No Trace Team will work with rangers from the City’s Parks, Recreation & Cultural Services department as well as local park and recreation advocates to provide area visitors, land managers, volunteers and the local community with information, service work and education that reduces outdoor impacts and promotes responsible recreation. The team will be focused on lessening impacts in Palmer Park and Stratton Open Space.
“Leave No Trace has given us an amazing opportunity to get outside and increase awareness about the importance of stewarding our city’s world class parks and natural areas,” said Gillian Rossi, Colorado Springs park ranger supervisor for the Trails, Open Space and Parks (TOPS) program. “Our department is a big supporter of the Leave No Trace Seven Principles, which guide how we manage our parks, striving to keep them healthy and sustainable. We are very much looking forward to the chance to partner with the community during what is sure to be an incredible and enlightening week.”
Leave No Trace has selected Hot Spot locations each year since 2010. Popular outdoor areas nationwide must apply to be selected for the program. Hot Spots typically experience heavy recreational use and human-created impacts, including excessive trash, damage to vegetation, trail erosion, disturbance to wildlife and more. Other 2021 Hot Spots are located in Page, Ariz.; Kerhonkson, N.Y.; Panthertown Valley, N.C.; Tulsa, Okla.; Philadelphia, Pa.; Greenville, S.C.; Moab, Utah; Glen Jean, W.V.; and La Crosse, Wis.
“Hot Spot areas are damaged but can recover again with a motivated community and a comprehensive infusion of Leave No Trace programs,” said Dana Watts, Leave No Trace Center for Outdoor Ethics executive director. “By identifying and working with Hot Spots and their communities across the country, Leave No Trace can rapidly move toward recovering and protecting the places we all cherish at a time when the outdoors has proven more critical than ever,” according to Erin Collier, one of the Subaru/Leave No Trace Team members who will be onsite to lead the work.
The following is a list of planned Hot Spot events that are free and open to the public in Colorado Springs. To view the full schedule of programs and volunteer events, visit ColoradoSprings.gov/HotSpotWeek. Some programs require online registration.