Leave Crystal Valley alone | AspenTimes.com

Leave Crystal Valley alone

I was heartened by the public turnout and comment period initiated by the town of Carbondale mayor and trustees, the Pitkin Board of County Commissioners, and the Pitkin Open Space and Trails staff and board. Thank you for allowing us to speak, and hopefully you realize that the majority of the voices were against building the trail, because of expense, further degradation to the Crystal River, and creating another damaging destruction to wildlife habitat.

The now-present bike path leading from Carbondale to the BRB-KOA camp ground is appreciated and used by the local families and neighbors.

Any construction of a new paved thoroughfare would not only change the character of this special valley, it would destroy wildlife habitat beyond repair.

The reason people visit Redstone, Marble and the little town of Crystal is because it is like “stepping back in time.” The residents, who choose to live in these little enclaves, like it that way. They moved there for peace, solitude, and to get away from the hustle and bustle of cities and towns.

The Colorado population explosion is corrupting areas like the Crystal Valley. The millennial mentality of entitlement and not knowing the true state of our lands before they were born has led to an immediate gratification, addiction and abuse of our mountain trails by mountain bikes.

Faster, farther, and new adventures on bandit trails are now the norm.

The Golden Triangle — Maroon Bells wilderness area, including Conundrum — is being trashed by visitors every year. The sad thing is that none of these visitors know what it used to be. We need to protect these precious areas.

Gov. Hickenlooper has pushed for the Crystal Valley Trail. From his far away digs, he has no idea the damage being done to our beloved wilderness and public open space lands.

I am asking the Pitkin County commissioners, Open Space and Trail, and the town of Carbondale to protect the Crystal Valley. Do not build this trail.

Holly McLain


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