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Mantiou Incline could reopen under free reservation system

The Incline has been closed since March 17 in response to COVID-19 but that could soon change under a new proposal.

MANITOU SPRINGS, Colo. — The Manitou Incline could reopen this summer without any fees, though visitors to the popular trail may need to make a reservation.

That's the latest proposal from Colorado Springs which didn't like Manitou Springs' idea last month to charge people to hike and park.

Both cities have been collaborating on a plan to reopen the Incline to align with recommended public health modifications during the pandemic. 

The Incline has been closed since March 17 under an emergency resolution issued by Manitou Springs City Council in response to COVID-19. At the time, the city said social distancing requirements and proper mask usage could not be properly enforced due to the large number of visitors on the trail. 

>Watch above to learn about an earlier proposal to reopen the Incline 

The new reservation system would allow 45 hikers access to the Incline every 30 minutes from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. That would help limit the number of people on the trail to allow for social distancing.

Under the proposal, hikers would also be required to check in with an onsite attendant before accessing the trail.

Other elements of the proposal include the addition of a handwashing station and increased restroom maintenance. Physical distancing, personal hygiene and use of a face covering would also be encouraged, according to the proposal. 

The City of Colorado Springs would operate and staff the interim reservation system.

The proposal to be presented to Manitou Springs City Council on Thursday night, but because the council is convening for a special work session, public comment will not be taken. 

The public can still attend the meeting virtually through the City of Manitou Springs’ website.  You can read more on the details of the proposal at this link. 

The Manitou Incline is a notoriously steep and difficult trail just outside of Colorado Springs. It climbs 2,000 vertical feet in just under a mile.

Credit: Getty Images/iStockphoto

RELATED: Manitou Incline closed to reduce transmission of COVID-19

RELATED: Manitou proposes paid reservation system for reopening the Incline


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