Reconstructing the Manitou Incline
Timberline Landscaping began work reconstructing the Manitou Incline on August 22nd, 2016 and completed the work in time for the trail to reopen on December 2nd, 2016. This was the second phase of construction done by Timberline Landscaping on the Incline and focused primarily on the bottom portion of the trail.
The focus of this reconstruction was on erosion control and mitigation, as well as making some general repairs to trail damage. This included doing repairs to the timber steps, installing timber retaining walls and rock walls, erosion netting, and doing grading and soil work. We wanted to prevent future erosion so that the Incline can be hiked for years to come!
This wasn’t Timberline’s first time to work on the Manitou Incline. Phase 1 of the Manitou Incline Trail Renovation was also done by Timberline, and we received a National Association of Landscape Professionals award for the project.
We are looking forward to continuing work on the Incline, and were excited to hear that the grant money was awarded for Phase III of the project.
Timberline’s Progress on the Manitou Incline – By the Numbers
• Manitou Incline Distance: 1 mile
• Manitou Incline Elevation: 8,600 feet
• Overall Gain: 2,000 feet
• Trail Difficulty: Very Difficult
• Average Hike Time: 30 – 60 minutes
• Cost: Free
• Hours of use: sunrise to sunset. No night hiking permitted.
• Pets: not allowed
The last of our helicopter delivery days was completed last week. Topsoil, netting, and seeding is complete which will help with erosion mitigation. In total 200 tons of topsoil and 100 tons of riprap was flown in. When possible riprap was collected from the wooded areas near the trail and brought over via a pulley system to the trail (video below).
Our most exciting days are those that we were visited by a bear and her cubs. They kept a safe distance but certainly serve as a reminder that we should all be aware when out hiking!
Thank you for your patience and support while the trail has been closed. See you on December 2nd!
Construction of timber walls has been completed, bringing our focus toward rip-rap boulder walls which are being constructed using 45 + tons of rock. Some of the rock being utilized was collected off the mountain itself and transported via pulley systems out of the woods and to the trail.
Many storm water chases are now in place. These will serve to direct water away from the trail when it rains to save the trail from further erosion. When the trail re-opens you will notice that many drainage swales have been constructed 5-10 feet away from the trail to provide further protection from run-off.
Next week we will have three helicopter delivery days to fly in topsoil and additional riprap boulders.
Much of our effort in the first weeks was placed upon organizing materials and preparing for our first helicopter day. Each helicopter drop location was numbered and marked on the trail and loads carefully planned by weight with a total of 54 loads and 100,000 pounds of materials flown in to date. These drops included timbers, concrete, augers, metal brackets, and a port-o-potty, among other things. Some items have been carried by hand up the trail including wheelbarrows, shovels, and one 500 pound drill that we were unable to fly in. The crew hikes The Incline each day to the jobsite.
To date our crews have completed 4 water chases, started 9 retaining walls, and installed or repaired 100+ timber steps.
Here is a closer look at what it is like on The Incline when the helicopter is delivering supplies!
Here are some directions to Manitou Springs and local attractions you can explore while you wait for the Incline to reopen:
Map of Manitou Springs Hiking
Want to see more Colorado Springs trails? Check out our Colorado Springs trails guide and map.
For more information about our trail building across Colorado Springs, see our Trails page!
Colorado Springs Trails Guide:
Colorado Springs Trails Map:
Having recently been honored with the Grand Award for Erosion Control and Ecological Restoration by the National Association of Landscape Professionals for our work on The Incline, we thought we would share just a bit of what went into the massive project. Full Description…