It’s “moved for the winter, stayed for the summer” season in Eagle County. The time of year where locals reflect on how fast the ski season went by, but audibly remind themselves (and anyone else who will listen) that summer is the real reason they live here.
We can all agree that summer in Eagle County means one thing: spending time outside. For some, it’s float trips on the upper C, for others, it’s a late-afternoon ride down Pool & Ice, and for many, it’s an evening walk through the neighborhood with kids in tow.
No matter how you spend time outside this summer, there are numerous programs and events designed to help you maximize your time outdoors while reducing your carbon footprint.
When was the last time you biked to work? Walked to the grocery store? Unicycled to (and from) the bar? Enter Sole Power, Vail’s free summertime green commuting challenge. Sign up as an individual or join a team, then track all the miles you use human-powered transportation instead of a car. You’ll have fun, save money, get fit, make new friends, and be entered to win great prizes! Learn more and sign up here.
If you’re interested in biking to work, but need that extra push, Bike to Work Day is Wednesday June 28th! Join the rest of Eagle County and push your bike pedals, not the gas pedal, on your way to work. Need even more motivation? There will be aid stations around the County handing out snacks, swag, and other goodies. The Climate Action Collaborative hopes you’ll swing by our station in Nottingham Park!
If you don’t have a bike (or yours is rusty from sitting outside all winter), consider riding one of those snazzy Shift Bikes on Bike to Work Day. With numerous bike share stations in Vail, Eagle-Vail, Avon, and now Edwards, you can hop on an electric bike and arrive at work sweat-free! Never ridden a Shift Bike before? No problem! Create an account on their app or website, and use the code SHIFTYOURRIDE (one word, all caps) to get 30 minutes of free riding if it’s your first time!
“I’m not comfortable riding my bike on the road! How should I ride to work?” The Eagle Valley Trail of course! The Trail runs throughout Eagle County, from Dotsero through Vail, and connects with other trails leading to Aspen and Breckenridge. Right now, the Eagle Valley Trail is mostly off-highway,and paved, with the exception of the section from Horn Ranch (near Wolcott) to Edwards. The Eagle Valley Trail is raising money to complete this final section. If you’re able, please consider donating so that the Trail can be completed!
Maybe you got a chance to ride a Shift Bike last year and thought to yourself: “Gee! These e-bike things are awesome!” Well, Holy Cross Energy, the towns of Vail and Avon, as well as Edwards Metro District all have rebates available to make the purchase of your new e-bike less expensive. In addition, the State of Colorado will be rolling out massive e-bike rebates in August to the tune of $1,100 (if you meet income requirements).
If biking sounds too sweaty, the kids are home all summer, or you just really like wearing PJ’s, consider working from home a couple days a week. The Climate Action Collaborative has launched Trends with Benefits, your one stop shop for “making remote work.” The website has resources for talking with your boss about working from home, creating a remote work policy, and more. Not only will you be able to walk your dog at lunch, you’ll also be reducing your greenhouse gas emissions!
The more time you spend outside this summer, the more carbon emissions will be reduced. Summer is such a beautiful time of year in Eagle County, so take advantage of it! Bike to work, walk to your friends house, Shift Bike to the farmers market, or work from home so you have time for that longer mountain bike ride. Cheers to a summer spent outside!
Will Barror is the Climate Action Coordinator at Walking Mountains Science Center. The Climate Action Collaborative is working to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in Eagle County 50% by 2030 and 80% by 2050. Their next stakeholder meeting is on June 26th from 1-4pm. Please email Will if you’d like to attend: firstname.lastname@example.org