Defn: a human male displaying evidence of devolution - exhibits distinctive "caveman-like" tendencies. This man often dribbles in public places; cannot drink a beverage without spilling it on himself, the floor or someone else; may also run into objects like lampposts & bushes; has a definite "sloopish & short legged" running style that is slow and low to the ground, often resulting in the dragging of knuckles.

These throwback neanderthals, along with their questionable diet, should clearly be avoided.

Saturday, June 30, 2012

Waldo Canyon Fire impact on Air Force Academy

Photo - taken Tuesday, Trails reopened Sunday
With so many of the local Colorado Springs Trails still closed due to the Waldo Canyon fire......

From Thursday
.... and wanting / needing to go for a run - more of the mandatory evacuations were lifted Friday (6/29) for areas in Rockrimmon and the USAFA.  So, I set out this morning to see if I could run the Falcon Trail - a 13 mile loop that in essence circles inside the Academy boundaries in the Foothills, just North of Colorado Springs and the impacted burn zone. 
Falcon Stadium w/ Blodgett Peak overlooking.
The guard at the gate said most of the trail was open, but wasn't certain if all of it was.  As I set out I passed several bikers who had done most of the loop and they told me the whole way around was open.  This is such a good trail to run on, keeping you honest and needing to stay committed with 13 miles and over 1300' of gain, not technical at all aside from just a couple of spots.  And plenty of views and scenary to behold.
Aside from wanting to get a good and testing run in, I was also curious to see what impact the fire has had on the Academy, as well as on Blodgett Peak at the North end of Peregrine - close to and quite visible from the South end of the trail. 

I am happy to say that the impact - although noticeable - especially to Peregrine and Blodgett Peak - is minimal to the Academy.  As you will see in the following photos - the fire is still burning in places, but the helicopters are doing a fantastic job and the Academy has several new fire lines cut in near the trail.
Blodgett Peak
Small, new firebreak cuts through the trail in several places.
A newly installed and very wide fire break
I stopped and chatted w/ a Mtn Biker when I took this last photo.  We watched the helicopters and chatted for a while - both agreeing that 1) The Academy is safe.  2) They took this very seriously - responding appropriately.  3)  The helicopters are fascinating to watch up close attacking the spot fires on Blodgett Peak.

I'm sure in the days, weeks and months to come - trails and more areas will open back up.  If you are reading this and are not local - please come visit Colorado Springs, spend lots of money and enjoy what we have to offer.  I don't work for the city or any tourist companies in any way at all - but I call this place my home and I can 100% vouch that we need tourists, we need business, we have plenty to share that you will enjoy.

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