Carbondale First Friday open house seeks input on Red Hill trail plans |

Carbondale First Friday open house seeks input on Red Hill trail plans

Megan Webber
Glenwood Springs Post Independent
Red Hill Council volunteers perform trail maintenance recently at the popular trail network on BLM land just north of Carbondale.

Trail design and construction contractors working with the town of Carbondale are hoping to involve the public in the planning of the new access trails to the Red Hill Recreation Area north of Carbondale as part of the town’s First Friday festivities this week.

Planning and design consultants DHM Design and trail builders Singletrack Trails will host an open house from 5 to 7 p.m. Friday at DHM’s downtown office, 311 Main St. in Carbondale, during the height of the monthly street party.

The town has been working in collaboration with the Aspen Valley Land Trust, which was able to secure a key piece of commercial property at the base of Red Hill earlier this year, and project stakeholders. DHM and Singletrack Trails were hired to design and construct the new trails, and to gather public input as part of that process.

“As one of the most iconic recreational trail areas in the region, the planning process to make Red Hill an outstanding experience for locals and visitors is important to us all,” Jason Jaynes, DHM principal and project lead, said in a statement.

“We want to hear from bikers, hikers and anyone with ideas on how to make the new access trails a welcoming, safe and enjoyable amenity for the town,” he said.

The open house will provide opportunities for the public to ask questions and offer suggestions on the alignments of the trails. The office will display bikes and hanging signs outside to indicate the open house Friday.

The project kicked into high gear this spring after the former commercial property at the base of Red Hill was acquired through AVLT’s successful “Save Red Hill” fundraising campaign, which successfully raised $1.35 million to purchase the 25 acres.

According to Carbondale Director of Parks and Recreation Eric Brendlinger, the funds came in donations from more than 300 people. The purpose of the trail is to give hikers and bikers a safer alternative route to access the Red Hill Recreation Area, he said.

Friday’s event will be the first of two open houses on the Red Hill trail project. The second will take place on Wednesday from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., and again from 4 to 6 p.m. at the site near the Red Hill parking lot on Colorado Highway 82.

A third open house will take place at a date to be determined in partnership with the Valley Settlement Project to gather support and suggestion from the Latino and Hispanic population of Carbondale.

Roaring Fork Outdoor Volunteers has a work day planned for July 24 to begin construction, if the town approves the trail plans by that time. Anyone is welcome to show up that day and every Tuesday until Aug. 21 to help with construction, beginning at 4 p.m. and ending at sundown. More information is available at

The goals of the open houses include gathering public feedback on the proposed trail alignments designed to improve safety, reduce user conflicts, eventually eliminate pedestrian traffic on County Road 107 and improve overall trail access and experience.

Brendlinger said the town is interested in hearing from the public what type of trails they’d like to see, and what types of trails are even possible at Red Hill. Other project stakeholders include Red Hill Council, Roaring Fork Outdoor Volunteers, Roaring Fork Mountain Bike Association, Garfield County and BLM.

More information at