Clear Creek bridge forges new link in The Colorado Trail
Volunteers help close an 80-foot gap in the 500-mile Colorado Trail.
From the Fall 2008 American Trails Magazine
From the Colorado Trail Foundation and CONTECH Bridge Solutions Inc.
REGARDED AS ONE OF THE PREMIER long distance trails in the country, the Colorado Trail is preserved and enhanced by “Friends” of the Trail who put out both tremendous volunteer effort and financial support.
An example of this was the recent success of the Clear Creek Bridge and reroute near the midpoint of the Trail. The Trail had crossed a private ranch for some 25 years.
When the ranch was sold a couple of years ago, the new owner, while gracious, requested that another alignment be found for the Colorado Trail. This was a real challenge— if a solution couldn’t be found, the continuity and connectivity of the 500-mile path would be broken.
Enter CT Friends, both volunteers and contributors. Volunteers scouted alternative routes, honed in on a feasible alignment, contacted landowners for permission, and set into motion all tasks to build a reroute. Donors stepped up, too, beginning with the new ranch owner.
The Colorado Trail Foundation had installed pedestrian bridges from CONTECH in the past. For the trail project, the foundation selected an 80’ long by 3’ wide Continental Connector style steel truss bridge. The structure has a weathering steel finish and Douglas fir decking.
“On this project, it was primarily volunteer labor,” said George Miller, Operations Director for The Colorado Trail Foundation. “The only hired labor was the crane to set the bridge and a backhoe operator; otherwise our volunteers did the work and built the abutments.”
“We wanted something that would be economical, environmentally friendly, and could be erected by volunteers,” commented Julian Lineham, Principal and Project Engineer for Studio NYL Structural Engineers.
“It has a substantial load coming down on the gabion foundations at each end and it worked well. Some gabions were also used in the river channel to break up the scour around the bridge foundation.”
Need trail skills and education? Do you provide training? Join the National Trails Training Partnership!
The NTTP Online Calendar connects you with courses, conferences, and trail-related training
Promote your trail through the National Recreation Trails Program
Some of our documents are in PDF format and require free Adobe Acrobat
Download Acrobat Reader
|American Trails and NTTP support accessibility with Section 508: read more.|
Updated October 19, 2008