Middle St. Vrain / Coney Creek
Road Review and Hosting

June 19, 1999

by Adam Mehlberg

On June 19th, 1999 our club reviewed the Middle St. Vrain / Coney Creek 4WD road to determine if it could be opened for the year. We review the road each year at the end of June to determine if the snow has melted off the Cutoff to Coney Creek. This year we hoped to open the road early due to the mild winter. Unfortunately the cold weather the week prior allowed the snow drifts to hold on a little longer.

We met at the Middle St. Vrain 4WD trailhead at 10:00am. John Oppenlander of the Boulder Ranger District met us in the morning to train some of our club members on a secondary project the we will be piloting this summer. Our club members will be volunteering to host the 4WD road each weekend through the summer. By hosting the road trailhead we will be collecting data for the Forest Service on how many and what types of users use the Middle St. Vrain road and trail system. This information will help the Forest Service manage this area in the present and the future.

After our Host training, some of our members began replacing the old signs attached to the Middle St. Vrain gate. The Club had purchased new signs from Carsonite with money from our Bud Kilgour fund. By 12:00pm we were headed up the Middle St. Vrain 4WD road. The road is staying in good condition. All of the work we have invested over the years is paying off. The buck and rail fencing is still up and the courderoy road section is still in place. Also, no one has been creating side roads off of the main 4WD road.

Where the road runs close to the Middle St. Vrain we stopped for a quick lunch, collected attendants names and passed out the Colorado Lottery Trails Month t-shirts and brochures. The first Coney creek crossing was right after lunch. As always in the early summer the water is flowing fast and the crossing is deep.

We made it to the Cutoff that connects the Middle St. Vrain with the Coney Creek 4WD road, but that was as far as the group would make it. The snow drifts still controlled the road. Matt Meester and Ryan Boddy did a little snow bashing and made there way up the beginning of the Cutoff. While these two tested their vehicles our group started heading back to the Middle St. Vrain 4WD trailhead where Greg Beery was doing the first volunteer hosting for the weekend. On the weekend of June 26th, Jerry and Lila Van Skike took the Oshwegos up the Middle St. Vrain in a second attempt to open the road. This time the drifts gave way and on June 26th, 1999 the Middle St. Vrain / Coney Creek 4WD road was opened.

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