Lance Benzel

Out There Reporter

Lance Benzel reports on outdoor recreation along with feature stories - occasionally dipping into hard news. Benzel is a former courts reporter at The Gazette.

More Articles by: Lance Benzel

Colorado Springs-area ministry with horses helps heal women parolees

By: lance benzel

The trio of horses at Freedom to Victory Ranch in Green Mountain Falls aren't exactly renowned for their pedigree, but for a ministry that works to mend fractured lives of women parolees, that may work in their...

Wet spring means a stunning landscape for Crested Butte Wildflower Festival

By: Lance Benzel

The wildflowers of Crested Butte are ablaze.

The scenic mountain town less than four hours west of Colorado Springs - which credibly bills itself as the state's wildflower capital - is welcoming visitors to...

Portions of historic Colorado Springs-area trail expected to be gone soon

By: lance benzel

There were slips and scratches, leaps of faith over "disagreeable fissures" and occasional collisions between man and mule.

Traveling the 1873 Bear Creek Trail - thought to be the first improved road to...

Rider in Residence: Colorado Springs trail reroutes offer pros, cons for mountain biking

By: Lance Benzel

What about Cap'n Jacks?

Of all the questions surrounding changes to Bear Creek trails, mountain bikers are mostly likely to lose sleep over this one, and it's little wonder.

Filled with sculpted berms,...

Colorado Springs conservation group touts massive protection effort near Pueblo


Palmer Land Trust, a Colorado Springs-based conservation group, has finalized a conservation easement that will permanently protect a sprawling ranch east of Pueblo.

At 25,000 acres, or 39 square miles, the...

Deadly shooting in Pike National Forest creates gun debate

By: BILLIE STANTON ANLEU and lance benzel The Gazette

The fatal shooting of a 60-year-old camper in Pike National Forest last week has prompted new scrutiny of lax enforcement on public lands.

Only two law enforcement officers patrol the 1.1 million-acre Pike...

Red Rock Canyon Open Space set to reopen; popular Colorado Springs fountain closed


The flood-battered Red Rock Canyon Open Space will reopen Friday, a little more than six weeks after it was closed for repairs amid record rainfall, city officials said Thursday.

Repairs to trails, roads and...

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

By: Lance Benzel

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...