Anemone Loop Trail

Anemone Loop Trail

OSMP is gearing up for a productive 2022 trail project season! 

In 2022, OSMP Trail Crews, Junior Ranger crews, youth corps crews, volunteers, and contractors are gearing up to build, repair, and maintain the trails that bring you to the places that you enjoy. At any given time during the peak of the busy trail project season, there may be over 75 people over 10 crews working on OSMP trails!

We invite you to explore the online interactive webmap where you can click on project locations to learn more about each of them.

What projects are prioritized?

OSMP Trail Staff are often asked why certain trail projects are being implemented while other ones aren’t yet. OSMP undertakes a thoughtful work planning process annually, which includes:

  • Anticipated budgets, recognizing that we need to allocate them to the highest needs.

  • Workforce capacity – not only how many trail workers will be on the ground, but also how many staff we have in support roles, such as ecologists for reviewing and informing project plans, and staff for securing required permits from governing agencies.

  • OSMP’s Master Plan PDF provides broad guidance for project prioritization – for example, it gives significance emphasis to repairing and maintaining existing trails.

  • OSMP land management plans (such as Trail Study Area Plans) outline specific projects of interest to the community and department to construct, re-route, or repair specific trails in an area.

  • Trail condition monitoring data identifies trail problems due to weathering or use.

  • Emergent priorities, such as fires and floods, may also bring trail projects forward for implementation.

OSMP Staff working on a trail

Marshall Fire and NCAR Fire

OSMP is working to repair and replace damaged trail and trailhead infrastructure. The majority of which is planned for reopening in the Spring, if not open already. Ongoing fire recovery work will continue with only minor impacts to the 2022 work plan.

What can you do?

  • Please hike on-trail – even when conditions are not favorable due to mud or trail erosion, staying on the center of the trail helps prevent vegetation damage to trailside vegetation!

  • Respect trail closures – when trails are closed, it is to protect ecological resources or to keep the public safe from trail construction related hazards such as equipment use or rockfall.

  • If you encounter trail workers – ask if it is safe to pass by, and thank them for their work – it’s often hot and physically hard work!

North Sky Trail area

North Sky Trail area

Major trail projects often take two or more years of planning to work through environmental reviews, permitting, and field design. Here is a preview of three of OSMP’s major trail projects coming up in future years.

Future Trail Projects

North Sky Trail

Identified in OSMP’s North Trail Study Area management plan, which included significant public input and approval by OSMP’s Board of Trustees and City Council, this multi-use trail will link the North Foothills Trail approximately 3 ½ miles north to the Joder Trailhead and trail system. Design and permitting work is scheduled for 2022, with construction of the trail (including three bridges) in 2023-2024. Volunteers will be called on to help with construction of this new trail link!

Saddle Rock Trail

Identified in OSMP’s West Trail Study Area management plan, this 2.5 mile reroute will create two loop options while accommodating climbers on the First Flatiron. Work is schedule to begin with the closure of undesignated (social) trails in 2022, and trail construction beginning in 2023 with the connection from E.M. Greenman to the First-Second Flatiron Trails.

Shanahan and Cragmoor area trails and undesignated trails

Identified in OSMP’s West Trail Study Area management plan, which included significant public input and approval by OSMP’s Board of Trustees and City Council, there are several trails identified to be designated or restored in this area. The final alignments of the newly designated trails may deviate from the current alignment to better incorporate sustainable trail design practices and to minimize ecological concerns. Several redundant undesignated trails will be restored following the construction of the designated trails.

Trails Volunteer Program

Each year, OSMP Trails Volunteer Program engages hundreds of volunteers from the Boulder Community and the greater Denver-metro area to construct and maintain sustainable trails so that future generations may continue to enjoy the beauty of Open Space and Mountain Parks. The program anticipates hosting 30+ projects in 2022 ranging from family friendly projects like constructing a sustainable reroute of Ski Jump Trail for National Trails Day to difficult, highly-technical stone work projects like Mallory Cave trail repairs.

How to get involved? Events open to the community can be found on the Volunteer Projects page. If you would like to organize a project for your company, organization, or group, please contact Trail Volunteer Program Manager, Beau Clark, at 720-899-2048 or

In 2022, OSMP is excited to formalize a partnership with Boulder Mountainbike Alliance that will streamline volunteer opportunities and augment OSMP’s capacity to tackle much needed deferred maintenance on multiuse trails system-wide.

Upcoming Trail Volunteer Events

Saturday, June 4 – National Trails Day – Ski Jump Reroute

We invite you to get outside with your fellow community members and help construct a new sustainable reroute of the Ski Jump Trail! The new trail will reduce OSMP’s maintenance backlog, protect valuable natural resources, and provide a more enjoyable visitor experience.

Register for National Trails Day project.

Saturday, September 24 – National Public Lands Day – Project TBD

We invite you to get outside with your fellow community members and help construct a new sustainable reroute of the Ski Jump Trail! The new trail will reduce OSMP’s maintenance backlog, protect valuable natural resources, and provide a more enjoyable visitor experience.

Register for National Public Lands Day project.

Thursday Evening Mountainbike Trail Events – Every 2nd Thursday evening from May – September from 5 pm to Dusk

OSMP is excited to partner with Boulder Mountainbike Alliance on the 2nd Thursday evening throughout the Summer to maintain OSMP multiuse trails.

Register for Boulder Mountainbike Alliance Thursday trail events.

Trail Work Tuesdays – Every Tuesday from June – August

Join the City of Boulder Open Space & Mountain Parks for Trail Work Tuesdays! We invite you to get outside and join an OSMP Trail Crew for the day to help construct and maintain sustainable trails! This work helps reduce OSMP’s maintenance backlog, protects valuable natural resources, and provides a more enjoyable visitor experience.

Register for Trail Work Tuesdays in Count Me In.

Other 2022 Projects

2022 Project Title
Undesignated Trails OSMP lands have over 160 miles of undesignated trails – otherwise known as social trails. These are routes that have been worn in over time by visitors, and not purposefully planned, designed, or built with consideration to ecological impacts or sustainability. Consequently, these routes result in impacts to native plants, wildlife, and habitats, along with soil erosion issues. Reducing undesignated trails is a Tier 2 strategy for Ecosystem Health and Resiliency in OSMP’s Master Plan (2019). This can be done through a combination of either formally re-designing and constructing these trails to be sustainable, or by closing and re-vegetating them. An example of designating a previously undesignated trail is the connection between the Lost Gulch and Cathedral Park areas along Flagstaff Road – this trail section had wood steps constructed into it, and was formally adopted into the OSMP trail system. In 2022, the trails crew will address around 5-10 miles of undesignated trails through active restoration, reroutes, and other efforts.

2021 Trails Program Accomplishments

Last year, OSMP trail crews, Junior Ranger crews, youth and conservation corps crews, contractors, and volunteers were hard at work on your trail system – here’s a snapshot of what they accomplished!

Trail projects completed in 2021
Project Description
First-Second Flatiron Trail Reconstruction and restoration of 2 more switchbacks.
Royal Arch Trail Approximately 700 feet of the trail was re-routed away from the Bluebell Drainage in order to prevent serious failures that would lead to closures. The project also makes the trail more resilient and reduces maintenance costs. OSMP also replaced a boardwalk and constructed a new bridge.
Red Rocks Trails Completion of a 400-foot reroute that was started in 2020, and reconstruction of timber stairs at Centennial Trailhead.
Cragmoor Connector Trail Trail reconstruction with timber stairs and restoration. Work will continue in 2022.
Tenderfoot Trail Completion of a reroute per West Trail Study Area plan guidance.
White Rocks Trail 270 feet of trail were re-routed to pull it further from the wetland and protect the trail from the creek.
Chautauqua Area Trail surfacing maintenance.
Springbrook Trails Approximately 2000 feet of trail maintenance and drainage improvements.
Gunbarrel Hill Project planning and preparation. Construction will take place in 2023.
Cottontail Trail Trail reconstruction and restoration that will include better drainage to reduce maintenance and improve accessibility. Project is scheduled for completion in Spring 2022.
Mt. Sanitas Trail Continued trail repairs.
Der Zerkle Climbing Access Partnership with Front Range Climbing Stewards (FRCS) on access restoration.
Anemone Hill Loop Trail This two-year trail construction project was finished, adding a nearly 3-mile loop to the OSMP trail system. Final work was completed in spring of 2022.
Bear Canyon Trail A two-thirds mile re-route was constructed and opened to use – finish work on this section will be completed in 2022. This trail section reroutes the trail from a sensitive wetland habitat area.
Lost Gulch Trail The existing social trail was formally constructed to be sustainable and accommodate visitor use, and was officially designated into the OSMP trail system.
Annual Maintenance Annual maintenance sweeps system-wide on OSMP trails.
Smaller Projects Several other smaller projects through the system.

Here is just some of the type of work completed on OSMP trails:

  • Maintenance of approximately 1,500 drainage structures to lessen erosion of trails.

  • 18,901 linear feet or close to 3.5 miles of tread constructed, maintained or repaired to reduce deferred maintenance issues.

  • 2,300 OSMP staff hours quarrying and moving material on job sites for repair-in-place projects.

  • Installed over 400 new overlapping timber steps.

  • 784 rock steps constructed.

  • 4,525 square feet of stone retaining wall constructed.

  • In 2021, 564 volunteers (including 64 youth) worked a total of 3155 hours on 33 trail projects! This has a dollar value of $96,628, and an immeasurable value towards land conservation and enjoyment of OSMP visitors!