In 2000, we started our Adopt A Road program with San Juan Mountains Association, San Juan National Forest and the Bureau of Land Management.
Joining in our program at that time was the Creeper Jeepers Gang of Durango. This club has a broad base of hardworking members who adopted Black Bear forest road on the Columbine Ranger District on the San Juan National Forest side to the top bordering the Uncompahgre National Forest.
The road is rough and steep, and many people travel it for the excitement of the terrain, views and challenges.
Knowing this, in 2000, the Creeper Jeepers Gang started doing trail maintenance on Black Bear by repairing water drainage, trash pickup and restoring natural soil and vegetation conditions from off-road travel. After many years of labor-intensive work on this road, Creeper Jeepers Gang has won national honors and has received two “Outstanding Trail Maintenance” awards amounting to about $7,500 from B.F. Goodrich. Part of the repair expenses on this road have been paid for by the Creeper Jeepers Gang out of these awards.
Another segment of road and trail maintenance for the club is Elwood Pass in the Pagosa Ranger District they adopted with our Adopt A Road program. Brush cutting, log and debris clearing and trash removal is their priority there also.
In the Rio Grande National Forest and San Isabel Pike National Forest, this group has also accomplished the same recognition from B.F. Goodrich of an award amounting to $4,000 for improving 6½ miles of the Blanca trail/road projects.
This year, repair work by the club on East Fork Forest Road will begin at 10 a.m. Aug. 19 at the intersection of Park Road Forest Service Road 380 and Elwood Pass Forest Service Road 667 on the Archuleta/Rio Grande county line outside Pagosa Springs.
There is a spring that has popped up in the marshy area at the bottom of the old military road, and people are driving around the deep water, causing the road to get wider. The club will haul in gravel and bring in heavy equipment to repair the damage that has been done to this segment of the road/trail. Some of the award money that has been given to the club will be spent on this project.
Patti Brady is Adopt A Road coordinator for San Juan National Forest and San Juan Mountains Association.