Winter closes West Avon Preserve trails | VailDaily.com

Winter closes West Avon Preserve trails

Daily staff report
newsroom@vaildaily.com

AVON — Town officials have announced trail closures at the West Avon Preserve aimed at protecting winter wildlife habitat. Closures are to be in effect from Tuesday through at least April 15 and will apply to all multi-use trails except Our Backyard and PB&J. The trails will be opened in the spring after an evaluation to assess any drainage and erosion concerns has been completed.

During the review and decision process to construct new multi-use trails in the West Avon Preserve, Avon’s elected officials emphasized the importance of protecting winter wildlife habitat in the area. The trail closures are important for ensuring critical, undisturbed deer and elk winter range land as well as bald eagle roosting and foraging habitat.

Long, Cold Winter

Winter is a time of great stress for many animals. During the winter months, deer and elk rely on their fat reserves as energy stores to survive the cold. If humans or other animals (such as dogs) spook a deer during winter, it could spell the death of that animal during the next cold snap. Bald eagles seek isolated roosts and feeding areas. Moving roost sites during the winter months can lessen eagles’ survival and ability to breed. Bald eagles also forage for small mammals and birds found throughout the preserve during the winter months.

Trail Closures

Officials are asking residents and visitors to be aware of and honor the following trail closures:

• Avon-Singletree Connector

• BLT

• Carroll’s Cutoff

• Lee’s Way

• Saddle Ridge Trail

• Wild West Ridge

• Wyse Way

There are new physical closures at trail entrances notifying trail users of these important closures. The PB&J and Our Backyard trails will remain open through the winter to hiking, snowshoeing and fat-tire bicycling. These trails are best accessed from the Beaver Creek Point parking lot and O’Neal Spur Pocket Park, respectively.

For more information, call Avon Planning Director Matt Pielsticker at 970-748-4413 or email mpielsticker@avon.org.