coloradobikemaps

Maps + routes for the Colorado cyclist

Important Update: Chatfield Reservoir

One of the 5 or 6 readers of this blog recently wrote in to tell me that it’s impossible to ride from the end of the Highline Canal Trail through Chatfield to rejoin the road and make a nice loop ride back up the Platte River Trail. What I’ve said here and in last year’s map is that you can dodge the traffic on Santa Fe/US 85 (it’s an unprotected crossing), hike your bike across the railroad tracks (probably illegal), and ride or walk down a sketchy trail to hook up with a paved trail within the park. When I last did (May, 2016) it was a mess, as evidenced by this IG shot I took:Chatfield Mess

I assumed at the time this was just bad luck on my part. There had been rain, lots of run-off, and I like a little dirt and gravel on my rides, so I just chalked it up to bad timing.

Turns out we have beavers to thank for the watery mess.

American_Beaver

As Andrew put it: “[I] discovered the trail in this part of the park is currently impassible due to flooding. I spoke with another cyclist who said it has been this way for about a year and is caused by a beaver dam on Plum Creek, which the park has been reticent to damage (understandably). There are no good alternatives to complete the loop — High Line ends at private land before getting a rider to Titan Pkway.”

Chatfield for blog

I hope I’m not the only one to see a rich irony in the work of the mighty Army Corps of Engineers laid low by the humble beaver. So unless and until they move on, ride the rough gravel trail along the top of the dam to connect up to the Highline Canal. And thanks, Andrew, for letting us know.

Another reader says: “Chatfield State Park is under construction due to raising the water level 12′, which is really a lot measured horizontally. All roads and bike paths on the south end are closed. This state park is good about recreation, and the bike paths are intended to re-open April 1, 2019. However, if you go on a weekend, the path from the High Line down to Plum Creek is in perfect condition – the lower section is new concrete with 3 new bridges. Still have to hike-a-bike up the embankment to the railroad tracks, but the continuation of the High Line is right there.”

October 7, 2017 - Posted by | Denver Metro, Douglas County, Updates | , , ,

2 Comments »

  1. Chatfield State Park is under construction due to raising the water level 12′, which is really a lot measured horizontally. All roads and bike paths on the south end are closed. This state park is good about recreation, and the bike paths are intended to re-open April 1, 2019. However, if you go on a weekend, the path from the High Line down to Plum Creek is in perfect condition – the lower section is new concrete with 3 new bridges. Still have to hike-a-bike up the embankment to the railroad tracks, but the continuation of the High Line is right there.

    Comment by Buzz | January 6, 2019 | Reply

    • I can’t quite figure out what you’re saying–can you now get down to the trails after crossing the railroad tracks? Any updates? Haven’t been down there for a while. Need to go.

      Comment by Jay Kenney | December 26, 2019 | Reply


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