View from Rueter-Hess incline 'real special'

Regional attraction in Douglas County surges in popularity

Nick Puckett
npuckett@coloradocommunitymedia.com
Posted 1/19/21

Word is getting out about the Rueter-Hess Recreation Area in northern Douglas County, the newest attraction to the county's plethora of outdoor activities. The incline, which opened Nov. 26, has …

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View from Rueter-Hess incline 'real special'

Regional attraction in Douglas County surges in popularity

Posted

Word is getting out about the Rueter-Hess Recreation Area in northern Douglas County, the newest attraction to the county's plethora of outdoor activities. The incline, which opened Nov. 26, has drawn visitors from throughout the metro area to catch the 360-degree view of the south metro suburbs at the top.

Jim Boberschmidt, of south Denver, hiked the incline Jan. 15 with his sons and said the view from the top was “real special.”

“I saw it on Instagram yesterday and thought `it's going to be a nice day and my wife likes to hike,' so I thought I would scout it out while she's working today,” Boberschmidt said. “It feels like it'll be busy on weekends. This will be a destination site for the area, so we'll see.”

The Rueter-Hess Incline Challenge is an outdoor staircase of 132 steps — roughly equivalent in height to a nine-story building.

The incline is located north of the reservoir and accessible off Heirloom Parkway near the Rueter-Hess Water Purification Facility. A parking lot west of the water purification facility has been designated for visitors at the bottom of the Incline Challenge. A one-mile trail, the Rosie Rueter Trail loop, leads to and from the parking lot and incline.

The incline has one-way access, up the steps and down the service trail.

Dogs are allowed on trails only and must be leashed. Dogs are not allowed on the incline.

The incline will be open from sunrise to sunset, seven days a week.

The opening of the incline marks the finish of the first phase of the five-phase Rueter-Hess Recreation Master Plan.

“We know that residents have been anxiously waiting for regular recreation activities to open at Rueter-Hess. We are very happy to have Phase I complete and the Incline ready for public use,” RHRA President Darcy Beard said in a Nov. 17 news release.

The Incline Challenge is the county's second, with the Miller Park incline in Castle Rock, at 200 steps tall, being the first.

Rueter-Hess Reservior will eventually be home to outdoor activities from archery to canoeing. The 1,600 acres of land surrounding the reservoir is owned by the Parker Water and Sanitation District.

Parker Water is an agency separate from the Town of Parker and operates in areas throughout northern and eastern Douglas County.

There is no timeline for when the rest of the area will open.

Rueter-Hess Recreation Authority is made up of six government agencies: the Parker Water and Sanitation District, Town of Castle Rock, Town of Parker, City of Castle Pines, City of Lone Tree and Douglas County.

The RHRA will hold a grand opening event in the spring, according to a news release, once the East-West Regional Trail, which will connect Parker to Highlands Ranch, is complete. To view the Rueter-Hess Reservoir Recreation Plan, visit rhrecreation.org.

“The beauty of Colorado is you're so close to nature from a lot of places,” Boberschmidt said.

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