Equestrians need a place to park | AspenTimes.com

Equestrians need a place to park

This is regarding the Bureau of Land Management’s Haines parcel on Prince Creek Road to access the historic horseback riding trails in the Middle Country of the Crown.

The equestrian community needs parking. I am asking the BLM for equestrian, truck and trailer parking in the Haines Meadow to access the Penstemon Trail and the Crown Road #8320 in the Middle Country of the Crown.

Equestrians can ride anywhere on BLM open space lands. Horseback riders are well aware of safety concerns with mountain bikes on trails. Our intention is not to cause unsafe situations with mountain bikers, but we merely want to be able to access the non-bike and several multi-use trails with excellent line of sight, wide-track footing and plenty of room to pass each other.

The Homestead Act of 1862 ushered in the era of cattle ranching in the Roaring Fork Valley. When you drive up Prince Creek Road, over the cattleguard you feel those traditions are still alive. You envision entering the old West. The dusty road, the meandering creek next to the old corrals and catch pens, and the sight of roaming cattle take you back in time. Many locals and visitors alike drive along Prince Creek Road to experience the essence of our Western heritage. I ask the BLM to hold onto and keep this Western experience alive.

The Haines parcel is the front door to the Middle Country of the Crown. Please let horsemen and horsewomen have entrance to these lands through truck and trailer parking to continue the tradition of riding our historic trails.

Please keep the Haines parcel out of the SRMA for mountain bikes. Equestrians and hikers want the Haines parcel to have a balanced recreational management plan including special protections for the wildlife and our Western heritage.

BLM deadline for comments is Aug. 5. Comments may be emailed to blm_co_sutey_haines_rmpa@blm.gov or mailed to BLM, 2300 River Frontage Road, Silt, CO 81652, Attn: Sutey/Haines Management Plan.

Holly McLain