On a wind-swept mesa perched above the Crystal River at Red Wind Point Open Space, what’s most noticeable on the landscape is what’s not there – cheatgrass.
The hikers and mountain bikers who hit the trails of Sky Mountain Park on opening day (May 16) will join an impressive array of mammals and birds on the landscape – a testament to successful management of the area for both wildlife needs and human recreation.
In the 1950s, a rare old-growth wetland near Aspen began slowly dying. Thousands of years in the making, the “fen,” as such wetlands are known, was succumbing to the forces of humankind – namely, an intentional effort to drain it for agricultural purposes. Two years ago, Pitkin County Open Space and Trails stepped in to alter its fate.