Watch now (28 min) | Popular hiking destinations are looking more like theme park attractions than trails. Here's how we both conserve and preserve access to the outdoors, without putting up turnstiles:
Just finished watching this, Cole — excellent!
Very well done. Thank you. I'll probably never climb a 14er, but I really appreciate your balanced approach to the issue of these popular mountains. I think I'll stick to Bergen Peak. Gonna tweet this out now.
Glad to see the project come to fruition, Cole. Very well done. Thanks for sharing the day with me on Grays/Torreys and including me in it.
Bravo on your reporting Cole! I will be sure to share this in my next newsletter and tweet it. You cover so many important topics here, from trail building and infrastructure to economic impact and individual responsibilities. I'm interested in this in part because I'm about to travel to Machu Picchu, an extreme example of an "alpine/architectural amusement park." There is so much gatekeeping to access the Inca Trail and then the ruins themselves, but I don't think it has backfired there--it's necessary to limit access and protect the site. But the tourism mob certainly degrades the experience. I also watched this with Southern California in mind, where my daughter hikes in the Santa Monica Mountains, and those trails are almost always like a superhighway in terms of crowding. People who live in LA seem to have adapted to it and think that level of elbow-rubbing foot traffic on the trail is normal. I hope that is not how popular CO trails will become—but then again, I support everyone getting outdoors, not only for the health benefits but because appreciating the trails and surrounding environment is a prerequisite to wanting to protect it. In any case, thank you for spotlighting this trend of swarming to and mainstreaming of peak-bagging 14ers and ideas to manage the impact.
Congratulations Cole on your documentary project. I learned a lot from a region I don’t know at all.
Well done !
Great work, Cole! Very informative - I don't live in Colorado, and I've not visited these peaks, but I really enjoyed the photography and vicariously hiking it with you. Lots of good information and great reporting!
Hey, this is really great. Nice work. Already shared it with my brother, who drags his kids up to these summits with their cardboard signs ...
Congrats…..excellent presentation. There must be a way to bring this video to a larger audience besides just sharing amongst your followers. Mother Nature deserves to remain free, literally and figuratively, for those who love and respect hiking in these areas. Educating and encouraging novice hikers is a must.
Stunning from start to finish! Your hard work, journalism chops and creativity really shine through, and you've opened up important angles to the conversation about conservation of Colorado's wild spaces. Congrats!