JEFFERSON COUNTY, Colo. — Seasonal wildlife closures went into effect Thursday for some Jeffco open spaces, Jeffco Open Space & Parks announced in a news release.
Jeffco Open Space enacts these closures "in response to conditions on the ground to protect sensitive species," the agency said.
The areas of focus this year include Elk Ridge Trail at Centennial Cone Park to protect elk during their calving season. This will also shut down off-trail areas in the interior of Travois Trail and Evening Sun Loop.
Portions of Clear Creek Canyon Park, between mile Marker 266 and 270 uphill of US Highway 6, will also be closed to the public for nesting eagles, under The Bald and Golden Eagle Protection Act. Anyone who violates this particular shutdown could face a $100,000 fine, prison time or both.
Violating any other closure will result in a $150 fine.
The Bumbling Stock, Stumbling Block, Skinny Legs, Blonde Formation, Ghost Crag and Fault Caves are included in that shutdown.
Deer Creek Canyon Park and Hildebrand Ranch Park will close to protect nesting birds of prey.
Rim Rock Trail at North Table Mountain Park will shut down to shield cliff-nesting raptors, ground-nesting bird habitats and nesting birds of prey from human disruptions.
Lava Loop Trail and the northern portion of the park at South Table Mountain Park is also shutting down to protect ground-nesting bird habitats and nesting raptors.
All these closures will last through July 31.
Starting on March 1, the entirety of Cathedral Spires Park will close for nesting birds of prey. And so will the Crown Hill Park Wildlife Sanctuary in an effort to shield nesting and brooding waterfowl and offer a refuge for deer, bobcats, coyotes and other birds.
Jeffco Open Space staff and volunteers will monitor local conditions during the closures and adjust as needed.