Planning begins for Paths to Mesa Verde trail

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Planning begins for Paths to Mesa Verde trail

Paths to Mesa Verde gains momentum
Lt. Gov. Donna Lynne chats with Montezuma County commissioners Keenan Ertel and Larry Don Suckla after a meeting about proposed trails for Montezuma County.
JIM MIMIAGA/The Journal

Lt. Gov. Donna Lynne rides Phil’s World on Thursday with Larry Don Suckla, Montezuma County commissioner; Ernest House, executive director of Colorado Commission of Indian Affairs; and Chris Kehmeier, project manager for Colorado the Beautiful trail program.
Lt. Gov. Donna Lynne visits with Cortez Mayor Karen Sheek after a meeting about proposed trails for Montezuma County.
JIM MIMIAGA/The Journal

Before a ride at Phil’s World, Colorado Lt. Gov. Donna Lynne poses with mountain bike guide Dani Gregory and local dignitaries, including Cortez City Manager Shane Hale, and Montezuma County commissioners Keenan Ertel and Larry Don Suckla.
Lt. Governor rides Phil’s World

“Look ahead, and ‘ride like you did as a kid,’ were good tips,” Colorado Lt. Gov. Donna Lynne said during a mountain bike tour of Phil’s World with local dignitaries Thursday.
The advice from local mountain biking enthusiast Dani Gregory was key for Lynne, who has a lot of road biking experience, but was only on a mountain bike for the second time.
“It was fun and pretty challenging,” Lynne said after the ride. “Your trail system is a great community resource for recreation.”
Along with Gregory and this reporter, Lynne was joined on the ride by Montezuma County Commissioner Larry Don Suckla, Cortez City Manager Shane Hale, Executive Director for Colorado Commissioner Affairs Ernest House, BLM staffer Jennifer Jardine, and Colorado the Beautiful Project Manager Chris Kehmeier.
The tour of the local trail was part of a promotional event and strategy session for the planned Paths of Mesa Verde, a 20-mile nonmotorized trail that would connect Cortez and Mancos with Mesa Verde National Park.
“We are so pleased to have you experience first hand the great trails we have to offer,” said Montezuma County commissioner Larry Don Suckla. “We’re planning for a lot more.”
In January, Paths to Mesa Verde made Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper’s “16 most important trails,” part of the Colorado the Beautiful project.
While the designation does not come with guaranteed funding, “It gives the trail project more priority, and more facilitation at the next level up,” said Kehmeier. “Trails that link communities are part of a long-term plan for Colorado.”
Although it will take years for the trail to be funded developed, Lynne said she could sense the enthusiasm for Paths to Mesa Verde and plans to report that back to Hickenlooper.
“I’m going to tell him lets get this trail done, there is a lot of steam behind it,” she said.

Planning begins for Paths to Mesa Verde trail

Lt. Gov. Donna Lynne chats with Montezuma County commissioners Keenan Ertel and Larry Don Suckla after a meeting about proposed trails for Montezuma County.
JIM MIMIAGA/The Journal

Lt. Gov. Donna Lynne rides Phil’s World on Thursday with Larry Don Suckla, Montezuma County commissioner; Ernest House, executive director of Colorado Commission of Indian Affairs; and Chris Kehmeier, project manager for Colorado the Beautiful trail program.
Lt. Gov. Donna Lynne visits with Cortez Mayor Karen Sheek after a meeting about proposed trails for Montezuma County.
JIM MIMIAGA/The Journal

Before a ride at Phil’s World, Colorado Lt. Gov. Donna Lynne poses with mountain bike guide Dani Gregory and local dignitaries, including Cortez City Manager Shane Hale, and Montezuma County commissioners Keenan Ertel and Larry Don Suckla.
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