Cabela’s is adopting a three-mile length of trail that runs behind its Lone Tree store. That makes it the first — but not necessarily the last — Douglas County company to adopt a trail. Store officials proposed the idea to the county, a concept they like.
“It’s the first time we’ve had a corporate sponsor want to adopt a section of the trail,” said Randy Burkhardt, director of Douglas County’s Parks and Trails division. “We’re all for it. We’re not just going to limit it to Cabela’s.”
Cabela Drive, the street south of RidgeGate Parkway that leads to the store, dead-ends at the trail.
In exchange for picking up trash and keeping an eye on the 3.1-mile section of the county’s East-West Regional Trail, Cabela’s will get a sign acknowledging its work. Company representatives said store employees and customers also will use the area to test new gear in an outdoor setting. Cabela’s opens Aug. 15.
“We do a lot of demonstration of our product with our customers,” said Karen Koons, general manager of the Lone Tree store. “We can use that trail to demonstrate snowshoes, binoculars, scopes and different things.”
It’s also a way for the sizable company to make an immediate hometown connection.
“We definitely want to be part of the community,” Koons said. “We felt that was one way we could give back to the community and sustain our environment as well.”
County crews check trails weekly, Burkhardt said, but the extra help will be appreciated.
“The thing they’re really going to be able to provide us is eyes on the trail on a consistent basis,” he said. “We do have kids that have been going up there building fires. They may be able to inform us of those more quickly. If they see any maintenance issues that come up, we’ll be able to jump on them before they become bigger issues.”
The nearly 20-mile East-West Regional Trail one day will continue east to Parker, and tie into the Cherry Creek Regional Trail. The portion of trail Cabela’s adopted is the newest, opening in July 2012.
The next East-West trail connection, from RidgeGate under Interstate 25 to Parker, is in the planning stages. The multi-agency project includes Lone Tree, Parker, Douglas County and state transportation officials, and likely will be funded through a GOCO grant.