Two El Paso County open spaces are poised to debut in the coming months.

First will be Kane Ranch Open Space, said Ross Williams, the county official assigned with planning recreation on the prairie preserve east of Fountain. The nearly 4-mile Lariat Trail will explore the 440 acres featuring views of Rampart Range and, on a clear day, the Spanish Peaks and Sangre de Cristo range to the south.

While open to hikers and cyclists, Williams has said equestrians are the "primary focus" at Kane Ranch. Lariat Trail "is slightly different than some of our other trails," he said. "Natural surfaced, it is designed to turn into a double track as it gets used over time. Other similar trails will be built in future phases."

He said Kane Ranch could open in late summer.

Meanwhile, he said Palmer Lake could see its anticipated open space revealed in the fall.

While relatively small at 65 acres, Sante Fe Open Space is expected to lend "a backcountry feel," Williams said. A to-be-selected contractor will be tasked with building 1 1/2 miles of singletrack trail in the mosaic of woods and meadows bordering the Santa Fe Regional Trail. The rock outcrop known as Elephant Rock will be one intrigue seen along the way. 

There will be no parking at the open space. To reach it, visitors could start from the Palmer Lake Recreation Area and walk or ride about a half-mile of the regional trail or trek closer to 2 miles from the trailhead along Colorado 105 in Monument.


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