Impacts of Social Distancing on Trails

"Park officials in a number of Colorado counties are urging visitors to stay on trails, citing damage to natural resources." -Evan Kruegel, FOX31 News

Kruegel, E. (2020, April 30). Rangers say social distancing is damaging Colorado trails. FOX31 Denver. Retrieved From

We can all agree that Colorado is an opportune place to be quarantined during COVID-19. With our wide array of outdoor opportunities, open spaces, and trails, Colorado has something for everyone when it comes to outdoor recreation. With the "Safer at Home" Order encouraging outdoor activities within your community, Colorado trails are receiving an unprecedented amount of visitation. With strict 6-foot social distancing measures in place, trails are seeing serious damage in direct relation to people stepping off the trail while others pass. In some cases, the trail is being widened by 6 feet or more and damaging vegetation that already struggles to survive. Now it is more important than ever to cautiously select where you recreate. Singletrack trails are typically not going to be your best opportunity to social distance while staying on the trail. With this being said, try to select trails that are wider or choose to stay on roads. If you arrive at a trailhead with a packed parking lot, please consider other options.