By Mike GolicThe Colorado Springs GazetteApril 27, 2018, 2:02:47It’s the night before Memorial Day weekend, and I’m driving down the Colorado River in my Jeep.
I’m heading back to the Denver area to attend my daughter’s graduation party.
As we cruise through the city, I look out at the river and see a sign for a spot on the Colorado Trail.
My daughter has just finished a two-hour hike along the Colorado’s edge that she’d like to do alone with me.
She’s a big fan of hiking alone.
“I love to walk the Colorado,” she says.
“And I’m so happy to be doing this with you guys, and with you and my family.”
A few hours earlier, the Colorado trail was already crowded with hikers, some of whom had never been to the river before.
But this time, a group of 20 people had already hiked in.
They’d all planned to take a short, two-mile detour along the river’s banks to enjoy some sun and solitude before heading back out to the trailhead to head to their respective parties.
“We had the same goal,” says Scott Tabor, who was one of the first to hike the trail.
“To have some time alone with my daughter and relax.
To enjoy the views and just be in the woods.”
Tabor had been planning to hike with a friend.
When I ask him what he thinks about people using drugs while on the trail, he says, “That’s really messed up.
I don’t think it’s right.
It’s dangerous, and people don’t understand the consequences.”
Tampons and water were not available at the trailheads, so Tabor was able to fill up his jeep with water and set out to walk alone, drinking about two liters of water each.
“I’m not a drug user, but I feel like I could have used some medication,” he says.
Tabor and his friend started walking when Tabor said, “Let’s go!” and then another, and another.
Eventually, they were just a few hundred feet away from the trail when they heard the sound of someone approaching.
The group stopped and turned around, looking around.
“This guy has a rifle,” says Tabor.
“He’s about 30 to 40 years old.
He’s wearing camouflage.
I was thinking, This guy has some kind of training, and he’s in a military vehicle.”
Tiberons friend was a police officer, and they stopped at a red light.
Tiberons jeep was stopped by a police car.
“That guy just pointed the gun at my head, and that’s when I decided to get out of there,” Tabor says.
They drove to a parking lot in the town of Fort Collins.
“It was crazy, because it was so dark out there,” says a neighbor.
“We were just in a parking garage.”
Toberts friend was taken to Fort Collins Medical Center, where he was treated and released.
“There was nothing I could do,” says the neighbor.
A few hours later, Tiberson was back at his home.
“The doctor said I was going to be fine,” he recalls.
“But he said it’s not safe.”
Tension was high, and Tiberts friend had to be taken to a hospital in Colorado Springs.
He was put on medication, but not for long.
Tabor and the friend stayed home and ate pizza, while Tiberon went to a local grocery store to buy some food.
“Then the next day, my daughter called and said, ‘Mommy, we have to go back to school.'”
Tiberson and his friends were back in Fort Collins the following Monday.
The next day was the first day of school.
“It’s hard for us,” says one of Tiberns friends.
“Because you’re so tired and so nervous, you can’t sleep.”
He says he has nightmares and feels suicidal.
“You’re just so scared, and you don’t know what you’re going to do if something happens,” Tibers friend says.
The next day’s classes were delayed for two days.
“This is the last day we have the kids out,” says another friend.
“My friends are scared, too.
And we’re just going to miss them.
We can’t even afford to send money to our families.”
Timmerons friend says they went to the library and were told to stay home, but they didn’t get back to class until two days later.
“They told us that we could get in and go to school, but that we would need to get a permit from the school to do so,” he explains.
“At first, I thought, ‘What the hell, I’ll just get out there and get my stuff and go home.'”
Tabor says he’s