By Andrea Flores
NEDERLAND, Colo. (CBS4)– A community group on Facebook is working to help law enforcement agencies in the Peak to Peak region regulate transient camps around Nederland.
Joseph Hall started Peak to Peak Forest Watch, a private Facebook group, less than one year ago. Now 500 members strong, they’re working to crack down on transient camps across town.
“We encourage people to observe and report, and call the appropriate authorities if they see something that’s life threatening,” said Hall.
Hall says he started the page when residents realized transients were taking advantage of public and private land.
“When people set up a camp, there’s a 14-day stay limit for the people, not the camp,” Hall said.
He says transients have been leaving behind bags of food, trash, and human waste for years.
“Sometimes there’s needles in the camps, and this is one of the reasons we discourage people from cleaning up,” said Hall. “People have found meth labs and pit toilets that are open. Some people even tried to dig a well and covered it with some branches,” said Hall.
CBS4 came across the U.S. Forest Service cleaning up campsites deep in the woods Thursday.
“People aren’t really aware of it,” said Hall. “You don’t see it, so it’s not in your face.”
Now, Peak to Peak is working with agencies in the area, including the Boulder County Sheriff’s Office to find a solution to the ongoing problem.
“This group can be our eyes and ears,” said Boulder County Undersheriff Tom Sloane. “They’re not going be working for us, they’re not an extension of us, but we want them to be able to provide us with information.”
Peak to Peak Forest Watch is hosting a meeting Saturday, Aug. 6 at the Nederland Community Center from 4 to 6 p.m.