The newest shelter under construction in the Rossland Range Recreation Site is being built to accommodate school children on field trips.
The new shelter is Booty’s Cabin and it’s being constructed a short distance down the Seven Summits trail from the parking lot on the south side of Highway 3B. The cabin’s proximity to the highway and the easy grade of the trail leading to it will make it an easy spot to reach for hikers, including school kids.
“The idea was for them to come up and be able to do stuff with the creek and the forest up here,” explains Troy Colautti, a director of Friends of the Rossland Range (FORR) and leader of the team building Booty’s Cabin.
To accommodate school groups, the cabin is also being built larger than other shelters in the Rossland Range. Booty’s Cabin is 23 feet by 14 feet, including the deck, or 18 feet by 14 feet on the inside. The stairs on the front of the cabin are also going to be the full width of the cabin so that they can act as bleachers.
Because of how easily accessible Booty’s Cabin will be, Colautti and his team also built a road leading from the gravel pit up to where the outhouse will be installed.
“Originally we weren’t going to put in a road, we were just going to put in a quad trail, and then I started thinking about it because everyone else was starting to complain that they were starting to fill up their outhouses already — like they’re half full and they’re only a year a half into it,” explains Colautti. “And so it’s like, ‘If you guys are filling up and you’re way out here and we’re way closer to the highway and this thing’s right next to the Seven Summits trail, we better be able to get at this one.’”
Booty’s Cabin will replace the Surprise Cabin, though Surprise is still standing for now.
“That’ll come down, hopefully soon,” said Colautti.
The roof of Booty’s Cabin was being installed on Sunday, but there’s still plenty to be done — including putting on the stairs, putting in a wood stove, finishing the siding and installing insulation.
Colautti has been working on the cabin with Darren Schleppe and Mat Chalmers, and the three have been joined by other people periodically, including Mark Miller, who was helping out on Sunday, and Rob Richardson, who built the woodshed.
Colautti isn’t sure how much he and his team will get done before the snow flies.
“Hopefully we’ll have the stairs on it and it’ll be usable,” he says.
The team could use some helpers who are able to get things done during the week, as they are only able to work on the weekends.
Colautti is also still looking for a chimney, flashing for around the top of the chimney and stairs.
Anyone interested in helping out or donating material can contact Troy Colautti at 250-368-7901.