Jonathan Carr, President
Don Moyer, Vice-President
The North Branch of the Old Spanish Trail is an historic area from Gunnison to Mesa County; this trail was used by Native Americans for thousands of years and by Spanish explorers and traders – as well as American fur trappers – in the early 1800s. After 1850, the trail was used by the U.S. military, settlers, railroad survey expeditions, and the growing numbers of settlers, farmers and ranchers in Colorado and Utah.
Our mission: To study, preserve and protect, interpret and educate, and promote respectful use of the Old Spanish National Historic Trail and closely related historic routes.
OSTA promotes public awareness of the Old Spanish National Historic Trail and its multicultural heritage by encouraging research and publication and partnering with governments and private organizations.
A managed and sustainable trail experience for hikers, bicyclists and equestrians that links the history of the Old Spanish Trail and celebrates the natural beauty of the Gunnison River Bluffs area for educational and recreational opportunities!
1) Energize the community around the preservation, conservation and use of the trails and the associated public lands.
2) Solidify our community around the idea of preserving and conserving the trails not only to preserve the history and heritage involved, but to also leave this important recreation amenity for future generations.
3) Develop priorities, strategies and implementation steps that move the large undeveloped private land holdings in the area in question into public owner ship or conservation easement so that dense development does not encroach on the character of the trails as they exist today.
4) Ensure that legal methods are explored, developed and taken to their full extent to protect the legal ROW of the trails in Mesa County.
5) Develop new ideas and opportunities for developing a properly located trail head for the north end of the Old Spanish Trail south of U.S. highway 50 in the Orchard Mesa area of Grand Junction. Further develop acquisition strategies and development alternatives for the trailhead.
6) Develop plans and implementation strategies for interpretive signage for the trails. Develop a marketing approach to increase the awareness, history and use of the trails.
7) Identify and establish opportunities to take advantage of prescriptive rights to ROW that have not been protected for the public.
8) Develop the vision of what these trails want to be when they “mature” and who they want to serve.
9) Develop a planning anchor providing for the use of the trails, while also allowing the expansion of Mesa County’s solid waste facility in the same area.
10) Identify a preferred route, or routes, from the OST Trailhead on Orchard Mesa to the Riverfront Trail along the Colorado River.
11) Work collaboratively to connect trails with the Dominguez-Escalante NCA and Delta County in the future.