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RMFI, FedEx team up on drainage control project in Garden of the Gods

       With the help of 46 volunteers from FedEx, the Garden of the Gods got a notable drainage stabilization boost in its Spring Canyon area June 10.
       The group had technical guidance from six staff and volunteer crew leaders with the Rocky Mountain Field Institute (RMFI), a Westside-based nonprofit that
Volunteers work June 10 to control drainage that's been deepening a gully in the Spring Canyon area of the Garden of the Gods during the FedEx Cares project with the Rocky Mountain Field Institute.
Westside Pioneer photo
sponsors close to 50 workdays a year at the Garden, under an agreement with Colorado Springs Parks.
       The corporation provides manpower and project funding through its international FedEx Cares program, which has also invested $32,000 to the Garden and local fire restoration, a press release states.
       Other project funding June 10 came from the National Fish and Wildlife Federation, the release adds.
       Spring Canyon is a largely open area in the south part of the popular city park, off Garden Lane, not far from the Garden of the Gods Trading Post. “It was an area
FedEx Cares workers (purple shirts) prepare a space to set a length of timber for drainage stabilization in the Spring Canyon area of the Garden of the Gods June 10.
Westside Pioneer photo
that needed a large group,” said Molly Mazel of RMFI. “The area was big enough we could spread them all out and maximize their numbers.”
       The work included the installation of 7 box steps, 14 subsurface stabilization timbers, 3 rock check dams and 3 “grade reversals,” in which the water flow was redirected to keep it from worsening a gully, she explained.
       In addition, a 625-square-foot area received planting attention, with three pounds of native grass seed and 61 transplants (chiefly yucca and clump grasses), in an effort to “make it clear what's not a trail and where people should be walking,” Mazel said.
       With about two million visitors a year, the Garden gets “a lot of impact by human use and always will,” she noted. “Someone starts a social trail [often in an area with drainage issues] and more people stomp down the same path.”
       Randy Smith, the FedEx leader, said in a brief interview during the project that he and other FedEx volunteers were pleased to have the chance to help out with the Garden's needs.
       FedEx had previously joined RMFI for a Garden workday in 2010, Mazel said.

Westside Pioneer article
(Posted 6/15/16; Outdoors: Garden of the Gods)

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