Preserve celebrates New Year's Eve

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Events include a fireworks show, skiing and snowshoeing

By Special to the Monitor

Valles Caldera National Preserve wants to create a new tradition for bringing in the New Year.

The preserve’s  Fire & Ice New Year’s Eve Celebration runs from 6 p.m to 1 a.m.. 

Fees include moonlit passes for cross-country skiing and snowshoeing.

There will be complimentary hot beverages, a variety of refreshments, and more.   There will be campfires blazing at the Valle Grande staging area, Missing cabin and History Grove. 

At midnight, a 5-minute fireworks show will fill the skies above the Valle Grande, providing there is enough snow covering the ground. 

To protect the wildlife and the scenic value of the preserve, participants are asked not to bring party favors or confetti.  No fireworks or firearms are permitted on the Preserve at anytime without a special permit.

A majority of the event takes place outside on the skiing and snowshoeing trails under the moonlight, so participants should dress for extreme, high-elevation winter conditions.

In case of cloud cover that night, participants are advised to bring headlamps.

The preserve now has a limited number of snowshoes and poles available for rent.

Rental fees are $15 for adult-sized snowshoes and $10 for youth-sized snowshoes.  Currently, snowshoe rentals are on a first-come, first-served basis.

Fees are $25/adult, $20/senior (62-plus years), $15/youth (6-15 years) and free for kids 5 years and younger.  Reservations are not required, but parking will be limited, so  carpools are advised.

For more information or to make reservations, visit the Valles Caldera National Preserve Web site www.vallescaldera.gov/comevisit/ or call 1-866-382-5537.