It’s that time of year folks – longer days, warm sunny weather one day only to have driving snow the next and mud. So. Much. Mud. Ahhh, spring in Gunni – gotta love it! It’s also that time of year when we see restricted use in some areas to help protect the Gunnison Sage Grouse during their critical mating season. From March 15 – May 15, there are road, trail and area closures at Signal Peak, Hartman Rocks and throughout Gunnison County to help protect our bird. As trails begin to melt (and they are melting fast) and spring fever really sets in, remember there are additional closures for mountain bikes and motorized users in the Signal Peak area to protect our wintering big game, as well as mud season closures at Hartman Rocks to protect our roads and trails until things fully melt. That’s a lot to chew on, so here’s a list of closures by area to help simplify:

Signal Peak:

  • To protect Gunnison Sage grouse, trails in the northwest corner of the Signal Peak area will be closed to ALL uses from March 15 – May 15. This includes the Ridgeline trail past the second radio tower, Rasta Gulch, Chicken Wing, Shoelace and the Cranor Hill trails.  All entry points to this area are marked with gates like the one above. Be good stewards and help us protect the Sage grouse during this critical time.
  • The entire Signal Peak area is closed to bikes from January 1 – April 30, and no use before 10am May 1 -May 15.
  • The entire Signal Peak area is closed to motorized use from January 1 – May 15.
Hartman Rocks:
  • While the trails at Hartman Rocks remain open to winter use (we haven’t entered mud season just yet), things are melting out fast. If you’re headed out on a run, hike, ride or ski, conditions are best during the morning hours before things heat up and mud sets in.
  • All roads and trails SOUTH of Powerline Road (Bambi’s, Sawtooth, Back-In, Outback, Nine-0, Skull Pass, Aberdeen Loop) are closed to motorized and mountain bike use from March 15 – May 15 for Sage grouse conservation.
Gunnison County, BLM and USFS Road Closures:

Gunnison County, the BLM and the USFS have also closed a number of roads to motorized use to protect the Sage Grouse and to prevent road damage during the wet spring. For a full list of roads closed to motorized use, visit Gunnison County Road Closures

Current trail conditions at both Hartman Rocks and the campus trails are a mix of snow, slush and mud, with little freezing overnight to firm things up.  We will be posting updates on the trail conditions at Hartman Rocks and on the campus trails behind Western on Facebook and in newsletters as conditions change, so stay tuned. You can always find more info on spring trail closures by visiting