Fall Colors up the Peak to Peak Highway by Amy Gosch

Hikes/Events

Hard Rock Mining Tour

Saturday September 3, 10:30 a.m.–1:30 p.m.
Nederland Park-n-Ride

Tap into the towns, tools and characters of local hard rock mining heritage by visiting mining sites of years gone by. Tours are free and open to ages 10 years and older. Some walking required.

Registration required. Register

 

Fun on the Farm: Cows, Goats, and the Milky “Whey”

Friday September 2, 9:15-10 a.m. and 10:30-11:15 a.m.
Agricultural Heritage Center

Children ages 3-6 will discover the journey that milk takes from cow to carton through stories and hands-on activities. Milk the Agricultural Heritage Center’s life-like cow, learn about animals that produce milk, and see products that come from milk. Adults must accompany children. The 9:15 a.m. and 10:30 programs are the same – pick the most convenient time to attend!

Note: This program is also offered on September 16.

Nature Detectives: It’s a Marmot’s Life

Thursday September 8, 10:30-11:30 a.m.
Mud Lake Open Space

Eat some grass, lie in the sun on a rock, and look for predators—these are the main concerns for Colorado’s largest rodent. Learn fun facts and experience a marmot’s life in the mountains. Designed for children ages 4-7 with adult companions.

 

Rattlesnake Hike

Saturday September 10, 10 a.m.-12:30 p.m.
Rabbit Mountain Open Space

As fall approaches, rattlesnakes become more active as they prepare for hibernation. Join volunteer naturalists on a moderate 1.5-mile hike and learn about the prairie rattlesnake.

 

Crafts and Trades of Olden Days

Sunday September 11, 10 a.m.-3 p.m.
Agricultural Heritage Center

Learn about old-fashioned jobs and the traditional arts and crafts that went into making what was needed for life down on the farm. See a blacksmith in action, try your hand at candle-dipping and working with a drop spindle! This special event is fun for all ages!

 

Bears in Our Backyard

Sunday September 11, 10 a.m.-noon
Mud Lake Open Space

As fall approaches, black bears are busy gorging on berries and other food in preparation for their long winter sleep. Join volunteer naturalists on a moderate one-mile hike to learn about our local bruin and how people and bears can share our wild places.

 

The Geologic History of Boulder County

Tuesday September 13, 6-7:30 p.m.
George Reynolds Branch Library, Boulder

Rocks contain a record of earth’s history that can be read like the pages in a book. Join geologist Roger Myers for this slide program and learn how to read the story in the rocks in your backyard.

 

I Spy Critter Clues

Wednesday September 14, 10-11 a.m.
Heil Valley Ranch Open Space

Help volunteer naturalists search for evidence of who lives in the foothills. We’ll look for tracks, scat, nests, bones, and antlers of some of the animals that live here. This program is geared toward preschool children, but siblings are welcome.

 

Fun on the Farm: Cows, Goats, and the Milky “Whey”

Friday September 16, 9:15-10 a.m. and 10:30-11:15 a.m.
Agricultural Heritage Center

Children ages 3-6 will discover the journey that milk takes from cow to carton through stories and hands-on activities. Milk the Agricultural Heritage Center’s life-like cow, learn about animals that produce milk, and see products that come from milk. Adults must accompany children. The 9:15 a.m. and 10:30 programs are the same – pick the most convenient time to attend!

Note: This program is also offered on September 2.

 

Sugarloaf Mountain Sunset Photography Session

Saturday September 17, 5:30 a.m.–8:30 p.m.
Sugarloaf Mountain

Please join Ranger Fowler for a sunset photography session at Sugarloaf Mountain. We will gather before the sun goes down, walk to a photogenic spot to capture the setting sun and take some photos for the ‘2017 Land through The Lens Photography Exhibit.’

Registration required. Register

 

Seeing Ourselves Through The Eyes of Nature

Saturday September 17, 9:30 a.m.-noon
Meeting location will be provided to registered participants

Join volunteer naturalist Linda Weber for a contemplative walk in nature. Slow down and use your senses to experience nature’s rhythms and learn about the ways of earth and sky. Wear comfortable clothing and bring a notebook and pen. For ages 16 and up. To register, email mailto:lcolbenson@bouldercounty.org, or call 303-678-6214 by Thursday, September 15.

 

Visit the Assay Museum & Rock Road Show

Saturday September 17, 11 a.m.-3 p.m.
6352 Fourmile Canyon Drive, Boulder

The James F. Bailey Assay Office Museum, located in the historic town of Wallstreet just west of Boulder, helps tell the story of hard rock mining in this area. The assay office was the place where prospectors would take their ore samples to find out whether or not they had potentially “struck it rich.” The determination of the assayer could, and often did, make or break a prospector. Admission is free and all ages are welcome.

Visit between 11 a.m.-12:30 p.m. and bring your rock samples, photographs, and pressing questions about geology to discuss with a volunteer naturalist.

History Revisited with Pencil, Brush, and Camera

Sunday September 18, drop in between 8 a.m.-2 p.m.
Guided tour at 10 a.m.
Walker Ranch Homestead

Artists and photographers are invited for a day of plein air and photographic opportunities. The homestead features original 1880s buildings and colors, textures, and views abound. Please bring your own supplies and camera, water, and sack lunch.

Registration opens three weeks before the event. Register

 

All that Glistens Isn’t Gold

Sunday September 18, 11 a.m.-1 p.m.
Nederland Mining Museum

Try your hand at gold panning and find out if you’ve struck it rich! Many people came to this area in the 1860s to find fortune through mining. Do you have what it takes to travel back in time? Programs are free and best for ages 3 and up. Space is limited to the first 25 people who register. Registration opens August 26.  Register

 

Astronomy: All Things Being Equal

Friday September 23, 6:30-9:30 p.m.
Hall Ranch Open Space, meet at the picnic shelter near the upper parking lot

Enjoy being outdoors near the Fall Equinox—when daylight and darkness meet halfway. Discover the motion that causes light to change through the seasons at a brief program, and learn to identify a few key constellations and stars. Afterwards, view the sky through telescopes provided by the Longmont Astronomical Society. Families welcome.

 

High Peaks and Silver Dreams of Caribou Ranch

Saturday September 24, 9 a.m.-noon
Caribou Ranch Open Space

Join volunteer naturalists for a hike to explore ancient mountain-building, alpine glaciation, and the history of hard rock mining in the Caribou Ranch area. We will also identify diverse plant and animal communities and look for signs of wildlife on this moderate 4.2 mile (round-trip) hike.

 

Geology and Landforms of Hall Ranch

Sunday September 25, 9:00 a.m.-noon
Hall Ranch Open Space, meet at the picnic shelter near the upper parking lot

Join geologist Roger Myers to learn about the dramatic geology and landscape of Hall Ranch. This moderately-strenuous 2-mile hike is geared to adults.

 

Autumn Heritage & Vintage Base Ball Game Day

Sunday September 25, 10 a.m.-3 p.m. (vintage base ball game begins at noon)
Walker Ranch Homestead

See how autumn was spent on a working ranch in the late 1800s. A highlight of this event is the vintage “base ball” game that will begin at noon.

Costumed volunteers will demonstrate autumn chores such as root-cellaring, sausage making and doing laundry with a washboard and wringer. Watch the blacksmith make hinges, nails, and other hardware needed around the ranch and attend a one-room school session. For more information, contact Sheryl Kippen at skippen@bouldercounty.org or 303-776-8848. Please note: Dogs and bicycles not permitted at the homestead.

 

My Summer of Nature Writing in the Parks

Tuesday September 27, 6-7:30 p.m.
Meadows Branch Library, Boulder

In the summer of 2015, writer Ellen Orleans was awarded two Colorado artist residencies: a week at Boulder County’s Caribou Ranch Open Space and two weeks at Rocky Mountain National Park. Ellen will share her experiences in the parks. Audience members will be invited to write their own pieces inspired by historic photos of the parks.

 

Hike for Seniors

Thursday September 29, 10 a.m.-noon
Mud Lake Open Space

Enjoy a nature hike for seniors every month. Programs include information about an area’s history, wildlife and current resource management projects. No registration is necessary, but please call 303-678-6214 in advance if you plan to bring a group so we have enough naturalists at the program.

 

 

Places to Visit

Agricultural Heritage Center

Open April 1 through October 31 from 10 a.m.- 5 p.m., Fridays, Saturdays & Sundays with tours starting at 11 a.m.

Come to the farm, enjoy the rural setting, and learn about the rich agricultural history of Boulder County. The farm includes two barns with interactive exhibits, a milk house, blacksmith shop, and a furnished 1909 farmhouse. Groups may make special arrangements for tours. Contact Jim Drew at 303-776-8688 or drew@bouldercounty.org for more information.

 

Nederland Mining Museum

Open June 3 – October 30
Friday, Saturday, Sunday 10:00am to 4:00pm

200 N. Bridge Street (on the roundabout in Nederland at the corner of North Bridge Street and Highway 119).

Learn about the lives of the miners of yesteryear.  Visit the Nederland Mining Museum and get a glimpse into the world of hard rock mining days in Boulder County during the late 19th and early 20th centuries.

Various “tools of the trade” offer a close-up look at the lives of the miners. Miners wore helmets equipped with lights; how did those change over the years? See how drills used to do the mining changed as technology did. Ring a signal bell like the miners did to tell the hoist operator to bring them up and out of the mine. How was dynamite stored and in what amounts could miners buy it? See indoor and outdoor displays of trams, ore carts, engines, historic photographs and rare mining claim maps.

 

Photo Credit: Amy Gosch