Officials in Douglas County, Colorado has temporarily closed a 1.4 mile section of the Cherry Creek Regional Trail, adjacent to the Hungry Horse Open Space, after confirming plague in a nearby prairie dog colony.


Specifically the trail is closed from Scott Road to 1.4 miles north of Scott Road. Access to the Cherry Creek Trail from the north Pinery Parkway trailhead is also closed.

Douglas County staff found evidence of plague during a routine inspection in a portion of the property closed to the public.

Tri-County Health Department will be treating this property to control the occurrence over the next few days.  To take every prudent measure to ensure public safety, Douglas County is closing the Cherry Creek Trail through the Hungry Horse Open Space through November 14.

Plague is transmitted predominantly by the bite of infected fleas, but can also be transmitted through infected body fluids.  While human and domestic animal infection is rare, please take reasonable precautions if you ever find yourself in an area where plague may occur.  Reasonable precautions include:

  • Stay on the trail and keep pets on leash
  • Use insect repellent with DEET especially on your legs and ankles
  • Use flea repellents on dogs, such as flea & tick collars, insect repellent or flea powder
  • Don’t touch animal droppings or dead animal carcasses if you happen to come upon one
  • If you or your dog develop flu-like symptoms after visiting an area where plague may have occurred, see your doctor or your pet’s veterinarian quickly and inform them of possible exposure to plague so they know what to test for.
  • Plague can be cured by antibiotics if diagnosed early enough.