Lance Benzel

Out There Reporter

  • Whitewater rafting conditions in Colorado 'as good as it gets' even with some areas closed

    Updated: Thu, Jun 25, 2015

    Stew Pappenfort perused the data on a recent morning and wondered if the Arkansas River was about to reach its peak. After weeks of high water, a single heat wave could melt what's left of Colorado's banner snowpack in the Arkansas River Valley, potentially pushing the churning river...

  • State grant will help complete trail around downtown Colorado Springs

    Updated: Wed, Jun 24, 2015

    A $1 million state grant will be awarded to Colorado Springs to complete its long-sought Legacy Loop trail around downtown. Great Outdoors Colorado, or GOCO, announced the award Tuesday in a news release. It is among 37 GOCO grants approved Tuesday that will be distributed statewide....

  • Sand Dunes park to raise fees

    Published: Tue, Jun 23, 2015

    Fees are set to rise on Oct. 1 at Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve near Alamosa. The park said Tuesday that it will introduce a flat fee of $15 per vehicle fee. That replaces the current fee structure of $3 per occupant in noncommercial vehicles. Motorcyclists, who...

  • Yay for Dads: There are plenty of reasons to thank dear old dad on Father's Day.

    Updated: Sun, Jun 21, 2015

    Is Father's Day destined to be an afterthought? Established as a federal holiday in 1972, it sure came late - some 58 years after mothers were first honored with an annual holiday - and some studies suggest that dad is less likely to receive a gift than mom, and that it will be a...

  • Spring rains in Colorado result in bounty of morels, other mushrooms

    Updated: Thu, Jun 18, 2015

    Nutty, meaty and a little bit sweet, morels hold a unique allure among the wild mushrooms of Pikes Peak's damp understory. Sauteed in butter with salt, pepper and a dash of chardonnay, they boast flavors "indescribable" to the uninitiated, said John Spengler of Colorado Springs, a...

  • Red Rock Canyon to reopen in 'next few weeks,' official says

    Updated: Thu, Jun 18, 2015

    Closed for nearly a month for flood repairs, Red Rock Canyon Open Space is nearly ready for the public - though the question of when remains open. "We are hoping that we can open it up and have people in there in the next few weeks," said Kurt Schroeder, park operations and...

  • Adventure camps aimed at 'sparking a light in women'

    Published: Thu, Jun 18, 2015

    Storms troubled the waters on Quail Lake, but Erin Elkaim, fresh from a lesson on the basics of stand-up paddle boarding, was smiling just the same. "It's really neat," said Elkaim, who joined a handful of participants at a women's-only adventure camp in Colorado Springs despite a...

  • Colorado Springs man sets Manitou Incline record despite suffering from diabetes

    Updated: Wed, Jun 17, 2015

    To the growing body of myths surrounding Manitou Incline excess and adventure, Greg Cummings adds the tale of a rare odyssey. Think of him as the guy who marched to the firmament and back. A day before the Incline closed in August for repairs, the Colorado Springs resident says he...

  • Pack the car: 16 quality places to camp in and around Colorado

    Updated: Mon, Jun 15, 2015

    It's the season of wanderlust, but the snow has yet to melt from the high country. While it's a bit early to begin your backcountry adventures, there is perhaps no better time to hit the road for some quality car camping. Inspect your gear, make a list of stuff you can't forget -...

  • Colorado Springs author: God speaks to us through pop culture

    Updated: Sun, Jun 14, 2015

    God is present in Gotham City - whether the Caped Crusader knows it or not. He walks with Walter White, the doomed antihero of "Breaking Bad." We hear his voice in pop music anthems and violent video games. Those are just some of the provocations at the heart of "Burning Bush 2.0:...

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