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"Fairy Forest " Will Be Closed to Public Access

Post Date:05/05/2020 12:08 PM

Beginning summer 2020, a portion of the Four O’Clock trail, which has historically housed the “Fairy Forest” will be closed to public access. The “Fairy Forest” was an ad hoc community installation that grew over time but was not created or managed by the Town of Breckenridge.

What began as a small installation of natural materials has grown in popularity over the years and now contains significant non-natural materials such as plastic, glitter, glass, sequins, paper, etc. Along with its growing popularity came extensive resource damage to the trail and surrounding forest, as well as encroachment into neighboring residential properties.

The single-track trail grew, in some areas, to 20-30 feet across. This resource damage has grown to the point that necessitates a trail closure. There are several critical reasons for this closure. First, extensive re-vegetation needs to be completed in the area. Second, the trail needs to be narrowed and re-worked with proper drainage and tread. Third, all unnatural materials need to be removed. This area has seen a lot of impacts, and now it needs time to heal and recover.

Regarding the future of the “Fairy Forest,”  the Town of Breckenridge has made the decision not to restore the installation. Throughout our 60+ mile trail network, we own properties, often jointly with conservation partners, or have agreements with landowners that allow for the construction and use of a public trail.

Because we do not own the land underneath Four O’Clock Trail, we cannot construct or manage anything other than trail infrastructure. While we value engagement and creativity, our Open Space program and the Town as a whole prioritize the protection of wildlife, keeping non-natural materials out of our environment, and following Leave No Trace Principles. We want to keep the family-friendly adventure but leave out the trash. The Town of Breckenridge strongly encourages residents and guests to take only pictures and leave only footprints. 

We welcome community feedback and encourage you to reach out to us at haleyl@townofbreckenridge.com. For a family-friendly adventure, please visit Isac Heartstone on our Trollstigen Trail.

The suggested re-route around the closure is the Four O’Clock ski run and will be signed accordingly.

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