Open Space & Trails Department

The Summit County Open Space and Trails Department identifies, protects and manages open spaces, trails and trailheads to preserve and maintain Summit County's rural mountain character, unique natural areas and high quality of life for residents and visitors.

Summit County Open Space & Trails Master Plan

The Summit County Open Space & Trails Department is creating a NEW master plan!

After decades of successful open space protection and trail construction, we now face new challenges with natural resource management and visitor use. With a new master plan guiding us 10 years into the future, we will be better able to proactively address challenges and adapt to change. But we can't do it alone!

Please visit our project website here to learn more, or email to learn more about how to get involved.

Quandary Peak & McCullough Gulch Shuttle and Parking

Beginning July 30, 2021 Visitors to Quandary Peak and McCullough Gulch Trails will be Required to Reserve Parking Online or Use the Free Shuttle from Breckenridge

Summit County, in collaboration with its partners, is adopting a pilot parking reservation and shuttle program for Summer 2021 to help address public safety issues related to limited parQuandaryPeakLogo_screenking and access at Quandary Peak and McCullough Gulch Trailheads. The pilot program will begin on Friday, July 30, 2021 and run through October 31, 2021. Starting July 30, visitors to Quandary Peak and McCullough Gulch Trailheads will be required to reserve parking online or use the free shuttle from Breckenridge. Parking for Quandary Peak and McCullough Gulch will be by reservation ONLY. For those without a reservation, a free shuttle will be offered as an alternative to parking at the trailhead. The shuttle will operate from the Breckenridge Airport Road Lot from 5:00 a.m. to 6:30 p.m., 7 days a week and will run every 30 minutes. The shuttles are operated on a first come, first served basis. The last pickup at the Quandary Peak Trailhead is at 7:00 p.m.

Click here for more information on parking reservations and the shuttle.

Individuals can also call the Quandary Peak & McCullough Gulch Parking and Shuttle Hotline for information: 970-668-4169. Shuttle lost and found can be reached at

The Quandary Peak Shuttle & Parking pilot program was started through a joint partnership between Summit County, the Forest Service, the Towns of Blue River and Breckenridge, and Colorado Springs Utilities. The program is one result of an intensive study of the area that resulted in a comprehensive, adaptive management framework.

Did you participate in the pilot shuttle or parking reservation system? Provide feedback on your experience here!

Recreation Opportunities

Open Space and Trails preserves the county's rich heritage of outdoor recreation and trail use. The county’s immense scenic beauty and mix of geography, public lands, and tourism combine to create world-class recreational amenities and opportunities. By and large, recreation remains the most important aspect to a vital Summit County economy.

Open Space and Trails works with multiple partners including the U.S. Forest Service and our local towns. Our properties are often gateways to the vast recreational resources that the U.S. Forest Service provides. We have numerous trail portals and parking areas throughout the county, providing a variety of recreational opportunities.
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Mine Cleanup and Reclamation

Open Space and Trails preserves and enhances landscapes and recreational opportunities by reducing pollution at numerous abandoned mine sites


E-bikes are a growing trend in cycling. For more information about e-bike regulations and their use on natural surface trails or the Recpath, visit our special projects page.


The State of the Open Space Report (pdf) summarizes the Summit County Open Space and Trail department’s accomplishments since its inception in 1995.

The report presents the current open space system and the many trails owned and managed by Open Space and Trails. It also provides clear metrics to measure the progress of the Open Space and Trails Department, including miles of trails, acreage of protected lands, and acquisition-related expenses.
  • The program has protected almost 17,500 acres of land as open space through over 347 acquisitions and dedications, working with over 200 landowners.
  • Each tax dollar spent to date to purchase open space has protected over $3 worth of property in Summit County, because our funds leverage contributions from property owners, Great Outdoors Colorado, and other organizations.
  • Together with its partners, Summit County manages more than 100 trailheads and local trail portals for convenient access to the county's bountiful, outdoor recreational opportunities. 
  • Summit County has constructed and maintains over 38 miles of Recpath, an off-street bicycle network. This is part of the 55 mile system throughout Summit County.
  • Summit County manages approximately 100 miles of singletrack, natural surface trails and 50 miles of dirt roads with partners at US Forest Service and towns of Breckenridge, Frisco, Dillon, and Silverthorne.
  • 1,315 volunteer hours were contributed to county open space and trail projects in 2019 with an estimated monetary value of $32,875. 

Trail Camera

Watch elk, mule deer, coyotes, foxes, and mountain lions on Summit County Open Space. 

Preventing Moose Attacks

More people are attacked by moose than by any other wildlife species, but attacks are preventable. See Colorado Parks and Wildlife's strategies for preventing moose attacks.