Hot Spot - Mt. Bierstadt, CO (Revisit)

Mt. Bierstadt is experiencing severe impacts from outdoor activities and is one of the many Hot Spots in 2018. With site-specific training, consulting, educational programs, service projects and more, these threatened areas can be put on a road to a healthy recovery.

Mt. Bierstadt is situated in the Mt. Evans Wilderness located just west of metro Denver, Colorado and is one of Colorado's 58 peaks over 14,000 feet. Mt Bierstadt is one the most popular and easiest of the 14ers in the state. With thousands of visitors annually making the seven-mile round trip hike from the trailhead on Guanella Pass to the peak.  The extremely heavy use on the mountain has caused numerous impacts to natural resources, crowding, and concerns for public health and safety.  

Mt. Bierstadt was first selected to be a Hot Spot in 2015. During Leave No Trace's time on site, the team worked closely with the US Forest Service and the Colorado Fourteeners Initiative to reach 500 people with Leave No Trace education. Much of the training and outreach was focused on teaching key stakeholder groups about how to effectively educate visitors on the importance of practicing Leave No Trace skills and ethics. 

The Leave No Trace team will be returning to Mt. Bierstadt for four days of Leave No Trace activation. While on site the team will work will host several trainings for Forest Service staff, key partner groups, and volunteers. These workshops will focus not only on giving these stakeholders a more in-depth understanding of Leave No Trace skills and ethics, but also equip them with the tools for sharing these messages with hikers in a way that will protect the fragile ecosystem and overall visitor experience on Mt. Bierstadt.