Boulder’s Chautauqua Park Overwhelmed

chautauqua trailhead restingBoulder‘s famous Chautauqua Park at the foot of the Flatirons and the adjacent, University Hill Neighborhood (AKA ‘The Hill”)  is finally hitting a tipping point in use, or perhaps over use as the city struggles to manage parking and the impact of an ever increasing number of visitors.

The area near here generally referred to as the East Chautauqua Neighborhood is even beginning to feel some of the same impact as so many people come to this part of town, especially on the week ends.

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Chautauqua Park Boulder Colorado

Chautauqua Trailhead BoulderChautauqua Park Ranger StationBoulder’s Chautauqua Park and the Boulder Flatirons are key landmarks.

They continue to be strong visual images for almost everyone who visits Boulder.

The City of Boulder Open Space and Mountain Parks manages the Chautauqua Trailhead.

Chautauqua ParkingChautauqua GrassThere’s parking next to the ranger station, at the beginning of  the primary trails.

Those include the Chautauqua Trail, Bluebell Road (which really was a road we could drive on to the Bluebell Picnic Shelter many years ago), and the Baseline Trail towards Gregory Canyon along Baseline Road westward.

If you can’t find parking in that lot, there are other spots around the grassy area of the park to the east between the ranger cottage and the dining hall.

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McClintock Trail Chautauqua Boulder Open Space Mountain Parks

Boulder Flatirons McClintock Trailboulder colorado mcclintock trailThe McClintock trail is a great launching point to head into the forest along a beautiful path in the Boulder Open Space and Mountain Parks system of trails.

If you like hiking on single track trail through the woods this is a wonderful route heading south from Chautauqua Park.

Since it’s only about a half mile long, you may want to continue on along the Mesa Trail to extend your adventure to other trails such as Kohler Mesa, Skunk Canyon, Woods Quarry and others.

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Boulder, Colorado NCAR Hiking Trail

Flatirons Boulder Colorado HikingIn South Boulder Colorado, on the western edge of the Table Mesa Neighborhood, you’ll find the National Center for Atmospheric Research, otherwise known as NCAR. One of Boulder’s Hidden Treasures.

It’s one of several national laboratories which employ hundreds of Boulder locals thanks to the City of Boulder donating land in the area decades ago to the federal government.


Boulder Colorado ScienceWhat I especially enjoy about the NCAR location is the easy access it provides to Boulder’s large system of trails in the area’s Boulder Mountain Parks and Open Space.

Along with that, you can also enjoy easy parking, a wonderful facility with interactive science displays for kids of all ages, and restrooms…which can come in very handy after spending some time on the trail!

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Rural Boulder County Colorado and Open Space

Boulder County Colorado Open Space

IMG_4248There are many areas around Boulder County Colorado that look like farms, ranches and such, but are actually part of our Open Space.

What’s especially cool about this though is many of these areas are both.  One of the paths I often take going to and from my daily stops as a Realtor is land that’s  still used as farm and ranch by a local family who’s been here for several generations.

I stop occasionally to pick up farm-fresh eggs along the way when they’re available, and so in addition to the local farm-to-table restaurants, you can find your own supplies all over the county.

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