Posted on April 27, 2013 by Bob Berwyn
The Hermosa Creek drainage near Durango is geting some bipartisan love in Congress.
Local stakeholder consensus may provide momentum for managment plan that includes modest amount of new wilderness
By Summit Voice
FRISCO — Colorado lawmakers in Washington, D.C. are reaching across party lines to try and protect more than 100,000 acres of the Hermosa Creek watershed north of Durango.
U.S. Senator Michael Bennet (D-CO) and Rep. Scott Tipton(R-CO) are introducing companion bills that would establish management for the Hermosa Creek Watershed based on recommendations from the Hermosa Creek River Protection Workgroup. The panel includes local water officials, conservationists, sportsmen, mountain bikers, off-road-vehicle users, outfitters, property owners, grazing permit holders and other interested citizens.
“We are lucky in Colorado to be able to enjoy many of the country’s most beautiful landscapes in our backyards. The Hermosa Creek Watershed represents some of the best Colorado has to offer,” Bennet said. “This bill will protect this land for our outdoor recreation economy and for future generations of Coloradans and Americans to enjoy. It is the result of a local effort that took into account the varied interests of the community, and that cooperation helped us put together a strong bill with the community’s input.” (more…)
Filed under: Environment, public lands | Tagged: Animas Mountain, Colorado, Durango, Hermosa Creek, La Plata County Colorado, Michael Bennet, San Juan National Forest, wilderness | 1 Comment »
Posted on September 20, 2012 by Bob Berwyn
Chimney Rock, in southwest Colorado.
President Obama will designate SW Colorado cultural site under the Antiquities Act
By Summit Voice
SUMMIT COUNTY — One of the most significant cultural sites in Colorado will get a boost this week, when President Obama officially designates Chimney Rock National Monument as part of the Americas Great Outdoors Initiative. The designation provides permanent protection to the 4,700-acre Chimney Rock Archaeological Area in the San Juan National Forest.
“Chimney Rock is almost certainly the most significant cultural site managed by the U.S. Forest Service,” said Richard Moe, who launched the push for monument designation six years ago. “The national monument designation will bring deserved national recognition to a place of significant archaeological and cultural importance to our country.”
This national treasure, and our country’s newest national monument, represents one of the farthest outposts of the Chacoan culture. Home to more than 200 homes and ceremonial buildings built more than 1,000 years ago, the area is of great spiritual importance to the Pueblo tribes of the Southwest.
“The story of my tribe, the Pueblo of Acoma, and our history is intimately connected to Chimney Rock. This place is still sacred to my people, and we are glad to see it will now be protected for our children and grandchildren,” said Chandler Sanchez, chairman of the All Indian Pueblo Council and former Governor for the Pueblo of Acoma. “As a national monument, the ancestral homes of my people will continue to provide inspiration to the thousands of people who visit this site.” (more…)
Filed under: Colorado, Environment, public lands, US Forest Service | Tagged: Antiquities Act, Chimney Rock, Colorado, Michael Bennet, San Juan National Forest, Scott Tipton | 1 Comment »
Posted on July 19, 2012 by Bob Berwyn
Proposed West Hermosa Wilderness area.
Sen. Michael Bennet introduces legislation to designate West Hermosa wilderness and protect Hermosa Creek watershed
By Summit Voice
SUMMIT COUNTY — It may be late in the session in an election year, but Colorado’s senators continue to push for additional wilderness designations in the state, recognizing the economic and and environmental benefits of untrammeled land.
This week, Senator Michael Bennet introduced a bill to protect more than 100,000 acres of the Hermosa Creek Watershed, an area in the San Juan National Forest north of Durango. (more…)
Filed under: Colorado, Environment, public lands, US Forest Service | Tagged: Durango Colorado, La Plata County Colorado, Mark Udall, San Juan National Forest, Sen Michael Bennet wilderness plan, West Hermosa wilderness | 1 Comment »
Posted on July 12, 2012 by Bob Berwyn
Chimney Rock, Colorado.
New study shows designation could significant economic benefits for the region
By Summit Voice
SUMMIT COUNTY — Despite early bipartisan support, a bill to designate southwest Colorado’s Chimney Rock as a national monument appears to be stuck in pre-election political gridlock.
Chimney Rock, between Pagosa Springs and Durango, likely was an important settlement and spiritual site in the Chacoan culture.
With local community support for the designation, as well a new report showing the economic benefits of the designation, Democratic Colorado senators Michael Bennet and Mark Udall, along with Republican Representative Scott Tipton, are asking President Obama to make the designation under the Antiquities Act. (more…)
Filed under: Archaeology, Colorado, Travel | Tagged: Antiquities Act, archaeology, Barack Obama, Chacoan culture, Chimney Rock, Mark Udall, Michael Bennet, National Trust for Historic Preservation, San Juan National Forest, Southwest Colorado, Travel | Leave a Comment »
Posted on May 19, 2011 by Bob Berwyn
Vicinity maps for the proposed Breckenridge land exchange.
Town would acquire Claimjumper and Wedge tracts in exchange for inholdings in the San Juan National Forest
By Bob Berwyn
SUMMIT COUNTY — Two parcels of national forest land in the Breckenridge could come into town ownership as part of a land trade that would convey some private inholdings in the San Juan National Forest into public ownership. The town and the Forest Service signed a formal agreement to initiate on April 4.
Part of the 36-acre Claimjumper parcel would be developed for affordable housing, as an extension of the Pinewood Village complex. The rest is to be managed as open space. The entire 16-acre Wedge parcel would also be managed as open space in the environmentally sensitive Cucumber Gulch area. All the documents are online at the White River NF website. (more…)
Filed under: affordable housing, Breckenridge, Colorado, Dillon Ranger District, real estate, Summit County Colorado, Summit County news, US Forest Service, White River National Forest | Tagged: Breckenridge Colorado, Breckenridge land exchage, Breckenridge news, San Juan National Forest, Summit County News, Trust for Public Land, United States Forest Service | Leave a Comment »
Posted on March 10, 2011 by Bob Berwyn
The U.S. Forest Service approved gas drilling in the HD Mountains of southwest Colorado despite local concerns about environmental impacts. PHOTO COURTESY COLORADO WILD.
March 10 hearing could be pivotal in effort to prevent roadless area energy development
By Summit Voice
SUMMIT COUNTY — Landowners, farmers, hunters in the southwestern corner of Colorado will be heard in a federal appeals court today (March 10) as they try and prevent gas drilling in little-known corner of the San Juans. The HD Mountains are described as a roadless watershed area that provides critical winter habitat for wildlife. See maps of the area proposed for drilling here.
“In a region peppered with tens of thousands of gas wells, there must be places where drilling is simply not allowed – regardless of what resources lie beneath the surface,” said Megan Graham, director of the San Juans Citizens Alliance.
“Balancing energy needs against the values that such activity inherently threatens is a challenge that land-management agencies struggle with to varying degrees of success. It is our job as conservationists to push those agencies to recognize in their decisions the resources that offset our collective demand on public lands. Carving out a little bit of space, here and there, where well enough is left alone is critical to offsetting the constant pressure on our public lands,” Graham said. (more…)
Filed under: Colorado, energy, Environment, gas drilling | Tagged: Energy development, HD Mountains gas drilling, San Juan Basin, San Juan Citizens Alliance, San Juan Mountains, San Juan National Forest, Summit County News, United States Forest Service | Leave a Comment »
Posted on January 14, 2011 by Bob Berwyn
The Forest Service will spend $1.475 million on improvements at Green Mountain Reservoir this summer.
Improved sites for hosts at Cow Creek South, upgraded highway intersection in the works
By Bob Berwyn
SUMMIT COUNTY — About $1.475 million in federal stimulus funding will be spent on improvements at Green Mountain Reservoir this summer, as the U.S. Forest Service finalized contracts for the work at the end of 2010.
The key projects are improving the intersection at Highway 9 and the Cow Creek campground access road, as well as a new camping loop with 13 sites at Cow Creek South with improved spots for campground hosts. (more…)
Filed under: Colorado, forests, Summit County Colorado, US Forest Service, White River National Forest | Tagged: American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, ARRA projects, camping, Colorado, Dillon Ranger District, Grand Mesa, Green Mountain Reservoir, Rio Grande National Forest, San Juan National Forest, Summit County News, United States Forest Service, White River National Forest | Leave a Comment »