Need an excuse to get out of Boulder this weekend?
Head up to Rocky Mountain National Park … FOR FREE!
The park entrance ranger will wave you on while waiving your $20 entrance fee through April 24.
Tomorrow–on Earth Day–there will be an open house at the park’s greenhouse, which features plants native to the area. Leave your car at the Beaver Meadows Visitor Center on Highway 36 just west of Estes Park where park employees will direct you to the nearby greenhouse.
A poacher killed — slowly, inexpertly and with a single arrow — the bull elk widely recognized as the current largest elk in the area. Now, officials are offering a reward for information leading to the poacher’s identification:
“This was probably the biggest bull in the Estes Valley,” said Rick Spowart, district wildlife manager for Estes Park. “For about a month, I saw him every day on the golf course with a big harem, bugling and doing the whole rut thing. Whoever did this stole a great watchable wildlife opportunity from all of us.”
The pine beetles are still hungry, and nothing is going to stop them from killing the vast majority of Colorado’s mature lodgepole pines in the next several years.
(Last year, the beetles chewed through nearly half a million acres of trees in Colorado, bringing the total bug damage in the state to about 2 million acres.)
But some organizations and homeowners hope that there’s some chance of at least saving a few of the pines — the ones that shade campsites, line ski runs or decorate a back yard — and that hope goes by the name of carbaryl.
The problem is that carbaryl — which to have any hope of fending of the munching beetles would have to be sprayed every year for a decade — is a “likely carcinogen,” according to the EPA, that can also cause a host of other unpleasant neurological problems. And two years ago, it showed up in Boulder’s water for the first time.
This month, a group of residents in Estes Park have begun organizing to fight carbaryl, forming the Mountain Pine Beetle Defense Council, according to the Trail Gazette.
Around Estes, the chemical is sprayed by the city, the forest service and Rocky Mountain National Park. Read more