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Big Dry Creek Open Space and Trail

The Big Dry Creek Open Space and Trail is one of the most important trails and greenways in the Denver metro region. The 10-mile trail is managed by the City of Westminster. It is popular with walkers, joggers, cyclists, equestrians, roller skaters, bird watchers, wildlife enthusiasts, and commuters.

With the purchase of four acres in 1989, Westminster began preserving the Big Dry Creek Open Space and Trail Corridor. Since then, almost 700 acres have been acquired along this 9.5-mile corridor, which travels through the middle of the City.

Acquisition of this corridor is for open space, trail, natural area, and view preservation. Abundant wildlife and native vegetation thrive along the trail corridor, bringing tranquility to this otherwise urban center.

The Big Dry Creek Trail is a regional trail and ultimately this corridor will allow connections to be made to the South Platte River Corridor and the communities of Broomfield, Thornton, and Northglenn to the east. The trail is generally flat, with short stretches of moderate grade. The trail passes among open spaces, parks, and neighborhoods.

It connects significant points of interest in Westminster, CO. On the west, the trail begins at Standley Lake Regional Park in Jefferson County. In addition to the lake and educational visitor center, this site is home to a pair of nesting bald eagles, unique in such an urban setting. The trail continues to the Butterfly Pavilion and Insect Center, then connects to the Promenade Terrace entertainment Amphitheater.

Big Dry Creek Open Space and Trail spans the western boundary of the City Park sports complex and the recreation/fitness centers located there. Crossing into Adams County, the trail connects to Front Range Community College and the extensive Big Dry Creek open space. This land was once an archaeological research site, yielding Native American artifacts. Interpretive signs explain the history of the area as discovered through the archeological dig. Big Dry Creek Trail continues to the eastern border of the City.

But, it is not all trails, Big Dry Creek Open Space and Trail is perfect for wildlife observation too, wild animals like coyotes, various bird kinds, and even eagles, as well as greeneries, will be seen in the area- such a unique and refreshing sight in a sea of concrete.

This is perfect for first-timers, you can even invite your friends and family for a tagalong in this moderately trafficked corridor since Big Dry Creek Trail is recommended for all skill levels. It may sound easy to navigate but getting sidetracked is very common here.

Furthermore, the construction of trail underpasses at several major thoroughfares was funded in part by Transportation Enhancements funds. An old water culvert was converted into a popular pedestrian underpass to make use of existing features.

The addition of the underpasses allows trail users to avoid busy intersections and traffic, making the Big Dry Creek Trail safe, easy to navigate, and appropriate for many recreational activities, diverse age groups, and users of varying physical abilities.

The City utilizes several resources to ensure proper maintenance and enhancements to the trail. Grants have been used to enlist the services of the Mile High Youth Corps. Also, Westminster has an enthusiastic and hard-working volunteer base to help stretch budget dollars for tail enhancements and revitalization.

Open space volunteers have contributed hundreds of hours to projects along the trail, including trail enhancements, bank stabilization, revegetation, wetland mitigation, fence removal, fish habitat development, trash cleanup, and noxious weed management. In addition, trail hosts help monitor the trail to report any concerns or suggestions.

Remember, Colorado’s weather can be very hot and Big Dry Creek Open Space and Trail does not offer that much shade. A hat and a water bottle to keep you hydrated will come in handy. There will be various points for a water refill if needed. Also, never forget to wear sunblock. And finally, if you wish to walk your dog, keep them on a leash.

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