Enterprise staff report

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May 23, 2012
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Improvements planned for Duck Pond open space

While the open space on the Colorado River at State Bridge is closed for construction of a new boat launch, Duck Pond Open Space between Gypsum and Dotsero remains open as it undergoes site development plans.

Eagle County and Colorado Parks and Wildlife are looking to enhance public access by improving the parking areas on the east and west ends of the property. Eagle County and CPW will also be working with the Bureau of Land Management to consider boat launch options, most likely in 2013.

In 2010, the county used open space funds to purchase a 40-acre property between Gypsum and Dotsero to provide recreational access to the Eagle River. In 2011, open space funds were used to purchase the adjacent 10-acre property to the west. The combined 50 acre property, now known as Duck Pond Open Space includes .8 miles of Eagle River frontage, which is open to fishing.

Duck hunting (including installation of blinds) will be considered during the management planning process. A parking and picnic area will also be considered.

Though site development plans are in the works, the property is currently accessible to the public with a few basic rules: no camping, no fires, no littering/dumping. Colorado Parks and Wildlife regularly patrols the property to check licenses and protect the natural resources.

A section of the Eagle Valley Trail will cross the property's north edge.

In 2012, an additional two miles of trail will be built to connect Gypsum to Dotsero, including the section through the Duck Pond property.

The trail will be 10 feet wide and available to bikes, walkers and runners. It will be constructed first as a dirt trail, and asphalt paved this fall or spring 2013.

The trail will provide viewing of the pond area as well as access to the picnic area that is tentatively planned at the cottonwood grove on the west side of the property

The project is being built by Eagle County Road and Bridge department with cost reimbursement to Road and Bridge from the ECO Trails fund.-

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The VailDaily Updated May 23, 2012 01:22PM Published May 23, 2012 01:19PM Copyright 2012 The VailDaily. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.