San Isabel hands off Hardscrabble runs

San Isabel Land Protection Trust has handed off the Hardscrabble Mountain Trail Run to long-time race director Hal Walter.

The eighth annual event is set for Saturday, June 6, at Bear Basin Ranch. It will continue to feature a post-race party with live music and a gourmet lunch.

For the past seven years, the popular event, featuring a 10K run and 5K run and walk, has brought runners and hikers to the scenic 3,400-acre private ranch protected by a conservation easement. The event's goal has been to help children, families and the community at large connect with the outdoors while introducing them to the importance of land and water conservation.

Each year, the Hardscrabble Run attracts upwards of 300 participants from across Colorado. Walter plans to donate proceeds to the running programs at Custer County School, where he coaches cross-country and track.

Linda Poole, San Isabel's executive director, said, "San Isabel's decision to turn over the race was based on our commitment to fostering community collaborations that strengthen long-term conservation and promote land ethics.

"We are thrilled to put the Hardscrabble run into Hal's very dedicated and capable hands, Poole said. "His experience and connection to Custer County youth ensures that this will continue to be a fun, educational event connecting people to nature."

Janet Smith

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  • "My family put 720 acres under conservation easement in 2009. We did it to protect the integrity of the property and to help secure the water rights to the irrigated hay land in perpetuity. In this age of agricultural and economic uncertainty, conservation easements are the thing to do."

    – Larry Vickerman, executive director, Denver Botanic Gardens, Chatfield