Pike Trails Ranches Improvement Association (PTRIA)

2009 Newsletter



PTRIA – PO BOX 45 – GUFFEY, CO 80820


May 26, 2009

For those of you who do not live here in Pike Trails full time, I’m happy to report that last winter was quite mild, especially in terms of snowfall. I think I only plowed 3 times all winter, and did not have to use the backhoe at all! Maybe all the work we accomplished on snow fences, both new and repair of old, deterred Mother Nature. The bad news…. the lack of moisture has us currently in a “high fire danger” situation, and a “burn ban” is in effect. This has also affected our spring wildflowers. There are a few, but not nearly as many as in the past couple of years. The last few days have brought us some very beneficial rain, even if it was on Memorial Day weekend. As usual, the landowner address for this Newsletter is based on Park Co. Assessor’s data, so if it is not correct, please notify them.


The 2008 Annual Meeting was held August 24, 2008 at Fire Station #3 on County Road 88 near Cougar Lane . 48 members attended, including officers, representing 28 properties. Due to rising costs, especially fuel costs, the membership voted to increase our annual dues by $25 per parcel owned. More on this later. The Board has been working on changes to the PTRIA By-laws, and these should be finalized by the Annual Meeting on August 30 th . Other items discussed included purchasing and erecting new snow fence, fish & ponds, non-dues paying landowners, the PTRIA website, and dogs running loose.


We scheduled several work days, mostly to erect new snow fences and repair existing snow fences. We shopped around, and the best price on new snow fence was in Denver , so Kenny and Leslie Thomas drove to Stockyards Ranch Supply on Sept. 5 th and hauled 1000 feet of snow fence and 200 T-Posts back to Pike Trails. Craig Miller organized work parties for the next 6 or 7 weeks to put them up and repair the old ones. A big thank you to all those who helped on this project, which included Craig, Bruce & Vonnie Mohr, Jon Klima, Dean Piele, Peg Larson, Mary Maxson, Eric Kellogg, Doug Skellenger, Don Rocksted, Larry Kohn, Gerry Johnson, Steve & Kathleen Donegan, Sean, Kris, & Cheyenne Webb, Geoff Fitzgerrel, and me. And thanks to everyone who brought food and drinks to keep our strength up!! We even took a couple of pictures of some of these hard workers in action that can be seen on our website (piketrails.org). Oh, I almost forgot…..Bob & Ann Erickson purchased and erected several rolls of snow fence by themselves for Deer Lane , just north of the “Y”.


We’ve had very positive response to our PTRIA website designed and maintained by Jon Klima. PIKETRAILS.ORG continues to provide news and photos of what’s going on in Pike Trails, including Weather, Roads, Snow, Energy Tips, Ponds, even a copy of this Newsletter! Thanks, Jon!!


Our roads stayed in pretty good shape because there wasn’t much snow, so we shouldn’t need quite as much gravel this year. During July of last year, we spread 36 loads of gravel (about 600 tons) at $250/load for a total cost of $9000. Our PTRIA Grader logged in 58 hours of grading, and required only preventive maintenance, including a new “edge”. I plan to change the oil and filter before we begin grading this Spring.

Even though the snow was light, we appreciate our volunteer snow plowers Larry LePage, Barry Anderson, Jon Klima, Peggy Larson, Eric Kellogg, Leslie Thomas, and Bob Erickson. For the benefit of the “newcomers”, winter maintenance is not included in your dues….we simply do not get enough landowners to pay dues to afford winter maintenance! But there are some of us volunteers who may be available to plow private driveways at a suggested charge of $40/hr (this could vary). If the backhoe is required, and it is available, the charge will be $60/hr. If you can find other “for fee” services, please feel free to hire them. We will continue to do our best to keep the PTRIA roads cleared on a volunteer basis.

Every year in our Newsletter, I write the same thing…”I’d like to remind everyone, especially the “newcomers” to Pike Trails, that PTRIA owns the private roads within Pike Trails Ranches. This 17 miles of deeded roads includes 30 feet on each side of the center of the roads. So if you’re putting in a new driveway or fence, keep that in mind.” As for grading and graveling, please let me know if there are spots that need attention. I don’t regularly travel all of our roads so I may not be aware of the problem. If we’ve got the money in the Treasury, we’ll do our best to take care of it.


The summary is shown below–details are available upon request to Mary Maxson, and also at our annual meeting in August.


Balance (5/15/08)$1,370.30
Dues-(102 landowners, Paris Creek Ranch)
(includes $125 from '07-08)
Extra Donations – General2,060.00
Extra Donation – Snow fence275.00
Extra Donations – Pond Maintenance770.00
Extra Donations – Fish50.00
Gravel Reimbursement (private driveways)500.00
Grading/Backhoe (private roads & driveways)158.40
Total Income$13,705.40
Newsletter & Postage
$ 315.78
Grader/Backhoe Fuel/Supplies221.47
Snow Fence & T-Posts2,060.82
Administration (Taxes, Ins, P0 Box, misc)1,619.78
Total Expenses$14,017.85
Balance as of 5/19/09$1,057.85



The Ponds are full of water….. and Fish!!! We stocked both ponds on April 28 th with 230 lbs. (over 450 fish) of 9-14 inch Rainbows. Plus, the fish that were left from last year wintered well. This year, I wrote and emailed several potential fish providers, and one company in La Jara (Crowthers Freshwater Trout) responded with the best prices. Jon Klima and I helped them put the trout in the water, and I can tell you, there are some that exceed 16 inches…..Jon had to hold me back from diving in after them with my hands!! See some photos he took on Piketrails.org.

Last summer, Jon put “microbes” in the lower pond to try to get rid of some of the “sludge” in the bottom and certain weeds….the jury’s still out on how effective this was. John Norman brought his raft down to the ponds last fall on several occasions, and with the help of Bruce Mohr and Dick Hilbert, Jon, John, and I dragged lots of weeds out, making the ponds more fishable. Jon & I also went out on the ice in January with an ATV plow, clearing snow off the ponds, which allows beneficial sunlight to reach the fish. We noticed a side benefit a few days later….there were some ice skaters and ice fishermen down there! I talked to one of the ice fishermen, and he said the fishing was great! So for you folks “young at heart”, keep that in mind next winter. Remember, these PTRIA owned Ponds are open to fishing (without a license) to all dues-paying Pike Trails Ranches landowners and their guests. Please be considerate when catching fish….in other words, “catch & release” is encouraged so that everyone can enjoy this activity, but it’s OK to keep a few for supper! And remember to help keep these pond areas clean by picking up your trash and “packing it out”.


Last fall, at the request of several residents, we hired a surveyor from Florissant to survey the PTRIA owned outlot#8 on Stream Drive . This is where the underground spring is located that many of us used before we had our water wells drilled on our own property, and was the first survey done since the original survey of Filing#4 in 1971. Two of the existing survey markers were found, and the remaining FOUR, mostly along Stream Drive , were determined and set with new rebar and pins. This survey was recorded with Park County on 9/2/08.

The Coalition for the Upper South Platte (CUSP) has scheduled a “Chipper Day” in Old Kathleen on June 27th, 2009. The CUSP coordinator, Mark Herndon indicated that he could easily accommodate Pike Trails on this same day if there was any interest. CUSP will bring a chipper to your location for a fee of $50 and chip all slash you have collected. The resulting wood chips can be used by you for mulch. So far, we have one resident who is planning on taking advantage of this program. With the Pine Beetle infestations spreading south from Breckinridge and Hoosier Pass , it’s a good idea to thin your trees to lessen the threat. These chippers will take anything 12 inches or less. If you’d like to participate in this program, please contact me or Mark Herndon directly on (719) 748-0033. Additional information can be found on piketrails.org on the “Events” page.


Newcomers to Pike Trails Ranches include Steven & Teresa Foster, Marvin & Robin Haney, William & Nancy Harper, Gayleen Schmitt, Bill Jones & Jean Berwick, and Michael Brandt & Dorothy Tyler (who purchased Frank & Caroline Miller’s properties on CR88 & Deer Lane). Our condolences to Dick Hilbert who lost his wife Rhonda to cancer a few months ago.


As I mentioned previously, Annual Dues will go up by $25 per tract for the 2009-2010 fiscal year as follows:

Single lot with driveway on PTRIA road $125.00
Single lot with driveway off of CR 88 or Hwy 9 $50.00 Second (or more) unimproved lot (each) $50.00 Second lot with home on PTRIA road $125.00

We have held the Annual Dues to $100 for most landowners ($25 for those residents with driveways NOT on PTRIA private roads) since 2002. For the last few years, we have run short of money in the Treasury, even with the most thrifty money management (Diane calls me CHEAP!!). In 2002, we were paying $150/load (approx. 16 tons) of gravel….last year, the best price we could get was $250/load. In 2002, We paid $2.50/lb for Rainbow Trout for our ponds…this year, the best price we could get was $3.45/lb plus $200 delivery. We were able to offset some of these increased costs with savings from purchasing and using our own grader, but it is evident an increase in dues is necessary. For your information, there were 102 PTRIA landowners (plus Paris Creek Ranch) who paid their dues last year out of a total of 150 landowners (68%). If you can’t afford the dues, please let me know…at least I’ll know you care. As in the past, we have provided a return envelope, but in an effort to contain expenses, no stamp. This was well received last year, so we’ll try it again.


This year is an election year, so we need a good turnout. As far as I know, the current Board members are willing to run for office again. Anyone who would like to throw their name in the hat for a position on the very prestigious and highly paid PTRIA Board of Directors is encouraged to do so, especially those who feel our Association should function differently! Remember……this is your meeting!!! Mark your calendars…. Sunday, August 30 th (the weekend before Labor Day) at 2:00 PM in the Fire Station on Co Rd 88 near Cougar Lane (SPCFPD Station#3). As usual, I’ll put up reminder notices near all the mailboxes in Pike Trails. And I’m sure some folks will bring coffee, pop, and munchies. I especially encourage new residents to come and meet their neighbors. See you in August.

Bernie Mann – President
Pike Trails Ranches Improvement Assoc.
(719) 479-2253


Thanks to Diane and Bernie Mann, Craig Miller, Frank Hole, Tim Bratten, Jon Klima, Bill Jones, Karen Kohn, and Bill Pate for sending us their photos for use on this website.



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