New CDC Report on Camping at Bonita Peak

The Bonita Peak Mining District Community Advisory Group shared a recent report by the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry determining the safety of disperse camping in the area. Designated a Superfund site by the Environmental Protection Agency after the Gold King Mine spill. Miller Middle School invites you to join in the celebrations for the start of construction on the new building. And if you have a natural Christmas tree drop it off by Santa Rita Park for recycling after the holidays. You’re watching the Local News Roundup brought to you by Happy Pappy’s Pizza and Wings, and Kroegers Ace Hardware. I’m Wendy Graham Settle. In 2016, the Bonita Peak Mining District was designated a Superfund site by the Environmental Protection Agency, as a result of the Gold King Mine spill. Which released three million gallons of mine waste into the Animas River and surrounding areas, turning the river orange and inundating the soils with toxic metals, mine tailings and more. The Bonita Peak Community Advisory Group created after the Superfund designation to better advise the Environmental Protection Agency with community input, shared a recent report from the Centers for Disease Control assessing the risks of camping at the Superfund site. The report conducted by the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry determined that camping in dispersed back country camping areas, even for one night, is not safe, due to the amount of lead in the soil. At the United States Forest Service South Mineral Creek Campground it is safe to come into contact with groundwater and surface soils, as the levels are not too high. The levels of metals in surface water at disperse camp back country camping areas are not high enough to make people sick. The report also noted which groups of people might be at higher risk, and what to look for when it comes to safety in camping. View the full report online at the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registries website. Learn more about the Bonita Peak Community Advisory Group at Miller Middle School invites you to join them in celebrating the groundbreaking for the new school building, Thursday, January 5th, from Noon to 1:00 p.m. The event will take place inside the Miller Middle School auditorium, and will offer the chance to view the architect’s fly through videos of the new building. A performance by the Miller Middle School Orchestra, talks by school and community leaders, and a dig in outside. The new building funded by Bond 4A will replace the existing building, which currently serves students in sixth through eighth grade. For more information about Miller Middle School visit For more information about the ongoing bond 4A projects in the school district visit and click on the bond tab. Ready to clean out Christmas decorations for the new year? Tired of pine needles clogging the vacuum? Santa Rita Park is once again the drop-off point for natural trees after they’re done gracing your home. Make sure to remove all ornaments and tinsel before dropping them off. There’s no curbside pickup for Christmas trees. The trees will be recycled into mulch. Drop off trees anytime between now and January 31st. Call the Parks and Recreation Department at 970-375-7321 with any questions. That’s it for this week’s local roundup. I’m Wendy Graham Settle.

Share This Post On