Wednesday, September 19, 2018
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Insta-trail magic

There is something poetic about watching magic. And last Saturday there was magic happening just above Nicholson Lake up Slate River Road.
Some 200 people gathered to pick up a tool and build a trail. Two miles of sheer fun popped out of the earth in less than an eight-hour workday. From the little kid picking up flagging, to the mechanically inclined engineer guys pounding nails to build a bridge, to the moms and grandparents and teenagers scraping away with tools like Pulaskis and McLeods—a trail was conjured up and came into being. It was the second phase of the Lupine trail. The first part took a weekend to build exactly a year ago. It is a great addition to the valley. This latest insta-trail makes it that much better.
Of course it took more than a day. It took countless volunteer hours and the vision of people from several local, state and national organizations. It took money to buy the land and bridge loans to make it work. It took people paying that extra 1 percent on their restaurant meal and hard-core mountain bikers who understand the need for an intermediate trail with a sweet flow. It took people whose currency is open space to understand that a trail gets people out into their treasure.
But the end result was another great communal gathering of people from the valley covering the Crested Butte spectrum to do something. I like it when people do things. Someone characterized this as a sort of Crested Butte barn-raising. There was no fighting. No one was saying “No.”
People weren’t trying to put up a gate but rather lay down a trail—a trail that was first used by a couple of guys in Adaptive Sports hand-cycles. It is a trail that can be used by everyone. Locals, second-home owners and tourists will all enjoy this sweet amenity for decades.
This latest insta-trail will be an attraction that says something really good about this place. Those toddlers picking up the flagging Saturday will be riding that dirt for a new generation.
That is magic.
And that says something really good about our community. Thank you, everyone.

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