Tava Trail Reconstruction

Tava Trail

Tava Trail Reconstruction

Fall 2016-Ecological Restoration + Community

Project Overview

The Sherpa Trail is an approximately 800 foot recreational trail that was adopted into the management and maintenance
operations of UCCS Campus Recreation. Historically, the trail has been in existence since the 1990s, maintained by UCCS Grounds, and utilized as a connector trail for Alpine Village residents as well as commuters parking in Alpine Garage and parking lots that existed pre-Alpine Garage and Recreation and Wellness Center construction. The trail is located just above the Recreation and Wellness Center and extends north to south from Alpine Village to Mountain Lion Way exiting just to the west of parking lot 431 near Summit Village. The trail surface primarily exists of natural materials, although crusher fines have been brought in over the years on numerous occasions to repair the many washouts, especially along the south end of the trail where the grades become much more steep and challenging to navigate. The trail experienced historic flood waters in 2013 and again in 2015 impacting the
integrity and safety of the trail. The Sherpa Trail was closed for use since August of 2015 due to this massive destruction of
the trail alignment.

The UCCS Campus Community heavily utilizes this trail and reopening of the trail was in high demand. The vision for this trail  reconstruction project was to minimize impact to natural, historic, cultural, scenic and aesthetic resources as indicated in the UCCS Recreational Trails Micro-Master Plan adopted in November 2014. Careful analysis and design was required to construct trails into the scenic campus throughout the many arroyos, along the beautiful bluffs, and amidst wonderful vistas with minimal impacts. Sustainability of these trails is as much an art as it is a science. Management analysis of the sustainability of these trails is based upon the physical capacity of the land to support the intended visitor use. As with wilderness ethics, minimum alteration of natural systems and minimum evidence of human presence is the desired outcome of management practices.

Campus Master Plan's goals: 

1. Preserve a Sense of Place and Develop the Campus in a Responsible & Sustainable Way - establish natural resource preservation and integration with the campus experience as key component
2. Plans identify Education Enhanced by Wellness through Recreation as a key component of the UCCS campus experience. The trail system is identified as key to the UCCS student experience, a unique asset for student recruitment, and a means for physically engaging students, faculty and staff with the campus' stunning natural landscape resource while contributing the their health and wellness.
3. Best management practices and innovative ideas to promote sustainable trail design and maintenance.