May 17, 2010 8:26 AM by Bea Karnes, News First 5

Paying for the peaks: hiking charges considered

Hikers who tackle some of Colorado's highest peaks could soon face a toll beyond the physical. The federal government is considering charging hikers up to $20 to access popular mountaintops.

The U.S. Forest Service says it will consider permit fees to cover trail improvements at some of Colorado "fourteeners" - or mountains above 14,000 feet. The Service proposes charging hikers $10 to $20 to access trails in South Colony Basin, a popular launching point for four fourteeners in the Sangre de Cristo Mountains.

Forest officials say half a million hikers a year climb one of Colorado's "fourteeners." They concede most hikers would oppose the fees, but say that hikers already pay to climb privately owned peaks.


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