This newsletter was originally sent on Oct 2, 2012.

  Naturally Yours

Yours to Explore: Open & Closed Trails

crn-trailwork.jpg Fall is a great time to explore local trails! 
Udall Natural Area, at the intersection of Lincoln and Willow, is now open. It is co-owned and co-managed with Fort Collins Utilities for water quality, flood control and wildlife habitat. The water from downtown and nearby neighborhood storm drains flows into a series of ponds before entering the Poudre River.

The settling ponds and wetlands filter the water but they aren’t a water treatment plant. Please don’t pour oil, chemicals or even soapy water from washing cars into storm drains- they drain into the river and impact the entire aquatic system from bugs to birds to animals.

Check out the a bench at the third pond, which is heavily vegetated with emergent wetland plants and is a good area to observe waterfowl and other waterbirds!  Learn more >>>

The trail at Coyote Ridge Natural Area is closed today, October 2, for trail work and closures are coming soon to Riverbend Ponds and Running Deer natural areas.  A prescribed burn may be happening at Soapstone Prairie the week of October 8.  Keep track of it all on the trail conditions webpage which is updated daily.

Waters Way Park Opening Adjacent to Pelican Marsh

pelican-marsh2012.jpgEveryone is invited to the grand opening of Waters Way Park which is next to Pelican Marsh Natural Area.  The Natural Areas Department will have a booth and an activity for children at the celebration.  Join the fun, Thursday, October 11, 4:30-6 p.m. with speeches and ribbon cutting at 5 p.m., Waters Way Park, 715 Fairbourne Way.  Free, no registration required.  Learn more >>>

Survey: Our Lands--Our Future

spotlight imageYou can help shape the vision and planning for our region’s outdoor conservation and recreation programs. Our Lands—Our Future is a project that will guide how future open space and natural area tax dollars are spent.  If you received a survey in the mail, please return it or complete it online according to the enclosed instructions.  If you did not receive a survey in the mail, take the online survey now! Let us hear your voice!

 Free Activities & Events

Tracks & Trails is the Fort Collins Natural Areas Department's guide to free activities and events during the warmer months.  There are 10 activities in October; you are invited to them all!

Birds on the Move, Friday, October 5, 9-11 a.m., Riverbend Ponds Natural Area, meet at the Cherly St. parking lot. Find out where birds are headed during their fall migrations. 1-2 miles, easy. Free, no registration required.

Skygazing at Fossil Creek, Friday, October 5, 8-10 p.m., Fossil Creek Reservoir Regional Open Space, meet in the parking lot. Enjoy views of the sky with telescopes provided by the Northern Colorado Astronomical Society. Dress warmly, and bring a blanket or chair to sit on. Free, no registration required.

Secrets of the Black Bear, Saturday, October 6, 9-11 a.m., Bobcat Ridge Natural Area, meet at the picnic shelter. Discover fun facts about this omnivore and see photos of bears taken at Bobcat Ridge. A short hike follows. Free, no registration required.

Poudre River Clean-up, Saturday, October 6, 8:30-11:30 a.m., Lee Martinez Park, meet at the lower parking lot by the tennis courts. Save the Poudre, the City of Fort Collins Natural Areas Department and additional co-sponsors invite the community to help pick-up trash along the Poudre River and trail. Volunteers will pick up trash along the river from Shields to Timberline. Wear long pants, closed-toe shoes and bring work gloves and water. Trash bags will be provided. Rain or shine! Free, no registration required.

Poop De-Doo, Saturday, October 20, 9 a.m.-noon, Pineridge Natural Area & Spring Canyon Park, 2626 W. Horsetooth Rd. meet at the dog park.  Lend a hand and pick-up after pooches! Picking up dog poop and educating others about it is vital in keeping pets and wildlife healthy and we all enjoy a clean area too. Poop pick-up will be followed by games and prizes. Poop De-Doo is sponsored by the City of Fort Collins and Bones Du Jour Dog Treat Bakery. Free, no registration required. Questions, 970-290-8874 or .

Save the Date: Natural Areas 20th Anniversary Party

 20logo.jpgNovember marks 20 years of the City of Fort Collins' Natural Areas Department.  You are invited to a reception to celebrate!  Thursday, November 15, 5:30-7:30 p.m. at the Lincoln Center, 417 West Magnolia Street. Festivities include presentations, appetizers, cash bar, music.  Free, registration required at , activity #49903-01

Share Your Thoughts: Gas Pipeline Project

pipelinemap12.pngXcel Energy and the City of Fort Collins Natural Areas Department are hosting an open house about the West Main Natural Gas Pipeline Replacement Project. Next year, part of the project could potentially cross several natural areas in Fort Collins including Coyote Ridge/McKee Farm, Colina Mariposa, and Hazaleus. Learn more and share your opinion at an Open House, Thursday, October 25, 4-7 p.m., at the Lincoln Center, 417 West Magnolia Street, Columbine Room.



Natural Areas News is published on the first Tuesday of the month with occasional mid-month updates.  Newsletter comments are welcome.  Please contact Zoe Whyman, City of Fort Collins Natural Areas Community Relations Manager, 970-221-6311 or

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