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Nov 14, 2013 8:49 PM by Bill Folsom

Target date set for reopening flood damaged Cheyenne Canon

Cheyenne Canon in Colorado Springs has been closed for two months, now it could be open within two weeks. The public has been blocked from the popular recreation spot because of damage and potential danger caused by the record rain and flooding in September.

There are crews actually climbing the canyon walls right now to knock down rocks and boulders dangerously loose because of all the water. Weeks earlier others also climbed canyon walls to assess ten potential danger spots. "Nine out of those ten needed at least some work," said Colorado Springs Parks Development Manager, Chris Lieber, "Three of these very little as it turned out, we had two that needed significant work." The canyon is narrow with many of the sheer walls directly over roads. With potential for portions of rock walls to break away the danger had to be addressed. "In some cases some of the Boulders are the size of Volkswagons."

Work is also happening where the road washed out on Gold Camp Road. "It's over 100 feet in depth." Switchbacks have been cut into the sheer hillside so heavy equipment can get to the base and start building it back up."[For] placement of a lot of large rocks to create a buttress at the bottom approximately 20 feet in height, keyed back into the slope," said Jeff Hovermale with Pike National Forest, "Then we're going to work up from that." Once back up to road level a public opening will follow. As long as weather cooperates, the goal for completion is the first week of December.

The work happening now will open the canyon, but there is still a lot more necessary work. Many permanent fixes have to wait until next spring.



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