Go wild on a hike near Rocky Flats National Wildlife Refuge

Dorothy Akal, Avenue Flashes
Posted 5/14/12

Most of us living in Colorado are here because we like so many things about it — an appreciation of wildlife is often the main reason. Over the …

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Go wild on a hike near Rocky Flats National Wildlife Refuge


Most of us living in Colorado are here because we like so many things about it — an appreciation of wildlife is often the main reason. Over the last few decades, our enjoyment of taking a short drive into the mountains brought with it a feeling of how wonderful it was when we could spot buffalo grazing in the fields, elk and deer moving in herds, and occasionally the excitement of seeing a mama bear with her wee ones or a mountain lion resting peacefully in a tree. But these sightings have become a bit too common in places that you might not expect.

The Colorado Department of Wildlife will tell you that these animals exist in abundance, but many of them are chased from their mountain homes into our urban environment and have become fearful of our busy highways and the condos and other buildings that presently exist.

That’s why having the Rocky Flats National Wildlife Refuge, located off Hwy. 93 just north of Golden, is a blessing. But it’s the addition of a multi-lane toll road on land that would use a corridor slated to be sold to the Jefferson Parkway Public Highway Authority by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service that may cause the most disruption to the sanctuary for our four-footed neighbors.

Organizations like Rocky Mountain Wild and its numerous partners filed suit against the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to stop this action. A legal team of environmental attorneys is fighting to protect the endangered species and wildlife, and you, too, can do your share to push the toll highway back to the drawing board.

For those interested in contributing time and/or money to this cause, Rocky Mountain Wild has arranged a hike in the Rocky Flats vicinity beginning at 10 a.m. Saturday, May 19.

They invite you to join them in visiting the grasslands and surrounding refuge so you can learn about the proposed toll-highway and their efforts to stop it. To reserve your spot, send an email to Lindsey@rockymountainwild.org/rockyflatshike.

If you or your company are willing to help support Rocky Mountain Wild in its efforts to protect this land from degrading air quality, paving over precious open space, harming wildlife and promoting sprawl, then contact the organization at www.rockymountainwild.org. It has formed an Earth Friends Conservation Fund, which is being used to benefit wildlife, forestry and future generations to come.

Don’t forget

You may have confused Golden Community Pride Days with Spring Yard Waste Collections. Pride days was held last weekend, and all Golden residents were invited to bring their waste/junk for recycling or disposal. Spring Yard Days are yet to come, scheduled for May 12, 19 and 26.

This is a way for the city’s Pay-As-You-Throw customers to get rid of grass clippings, pine needles, leaves, weeds and branches as long as the stuff can be contain in compostable bags or bundles, following certain restrictions. Pickups will have assigned dates and limits. Call EDS at 303-278-8600 for further information and enrollment.

Here’s a mention that the kids appreciate: the Colorado School of Mines 2012 Mines Youth Camp is set for June 18 and 20, with registrations due by June 1.

This is the one that will be conducted by the Colorado School of Mines football staff, and it’s limited to boys entering grades 3-8. Head Coach Bob Stitt, who was selected as two-time Conference Coach of the Year will be there to supervise the plays of our future Broncos.

Happy Mother’s Day!

Whether your Mom lives in Golden or is living a distance away, this year’s date for her celebration is Sunday, May 13. For some of us, this might mean a cemetery visit or a few extra prayers at home, with remembrances of days gone by. For me, it will be a combination of my happiness in being a mother and in the sadness of losing my mother on a previous May 13 Mother’s Day. But remember, mothers are never forgotten. If you are making plans or doing some shopping for that special mom in your life, don’t forget that we have a lot of terrific options right here in Golden. You’ll find almost everything you need at your fingertips by simply strolling down Washington Avenue and the adjacent downtown area. Special gifts from the museums and galleries, boutiques and gift shops, florists and excellent dining options all over town can help you add a special, personal touch to your upcoming Mother’s Day celebrations.

Dorothy Akal is a Golden resident and longtime Golden Transcript contributor who writes about Golden happenings in Avenue Flashes. To contribute an item for her column, call or fax information to 303-279-4990.


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