To begin to understand the concept of closing the loop of an ecosystem, follow the water. The streams that leave the top ponds, the soaking pond, the apple ponds. Where do they go? To find the answer, find the box. Each stream feeds into the collection box, a concrete vault in between the Oak House and the Welcome Center. There the water feeds into an underground pipe that leads to the hydroelectric plant, which supplies all the power for Valley View Hot Springs and allows the Springs to be completely off the grid. After the water leaves the plant it feeds into the Meanders,
The bats that inhabit the Orient Mine are Brazilian Free-tail bats. This is a migrating species and they are here only during the summer. The time of their arrival depends on many factors. One of those factors is the bug population. The bats feed on insects and if there are no bugs to eat, there will be no bats. This spring was cool and the bug population was slow to develop. If you are interested in taking the hike up to the mine to see the bat out flight, call the Welcome Center at 719-256-4315 for the most up to date information.
VOLUNTEERING IN THE GARDEN?
If you should ask yourself: Can I contribute by volunteering in the OLT garden at the Everson Ranch?
The answer most likely is yes,
if you like physical outdoor activities,
want to give your mind a break,
help grow healthy, pesticide free, fresh food and flowers.
It does not matter what age your are, or whether you are a newbie or do not have a green thumb. We can find a typical home garden activity that fits your physical ability only that we do it on our 2 acres.
Tasks can range from harvesting, hand washing, packaging and delivering our produce to the welcome center, tackle weeds with small hand tools while on your knees or by standing using a hoe, digging using shovels or spades, pushing wheelbarrows with weeds to feed chickens and pigs, collecting manure, transplanting, mulching, racking, pruning, pushing a mower or turning compost and more.
Should you have difficulties squatting for example, you could sit on a stool to weed. With other words we would love your help!
You benefit by leaving with a sense of accomplishment, feeling more in tune with nature, and less stressed after experiencing happiness in the dirt. You will sleep better, burn calories and strengthen your heart - and learn about high altitude agriculture in the San Luis Valley.
On our world naked gardening day it was wonderful to experience a sense of community with the large turn out we had.
You will need to bring a water bottle, layers of clothing (for sun and wind protection) sunscreen and shoes. We have the gardening tools, knee pads, gloves and sun hats.
Shovel and spade is waiting for you.