This 622-acre conservation easement was purchased by The Conservation Fund with funds from Great Outdoors Colorado, Natural Resources Conservation Service, and the Gates Family Foundation on December 21, 2016. The Conservation Fund immediately assigned the conservation easement to the Colorado Headwaters Land Trust.
Water rights encumbered.
Conservation Values Protected:
Scenic Open Space: The property is located within the Upper Colorado River Priority Landscape, identified by the Colorado Conservation Partnership as a top priority for conservation purposes in Colorado. The property is highly visible by the public from numerous locations: the Colorado River headwaters National Scenic & Historic Byway on US Highway 40, Grand County Road 2, Amtrak National Rail Passenger Service and the extensive public BLM lands adjacent to and nearby the property.
Agricultural Open Space: The property has been owned by the landowners for four generations, and contains 2.5 miles of Troublesome Creek and 1 mile of Starr Gulch. The protection of this property yields significant public benefit because the property includes land that has been in agricultural production for over a century and that is undeveloped, open and exceptionally scenic to the public.
Wildlife Habitat: Troublesome Creek, Starr Gulch, and the adjacent wetlands in the riparian corridors, and the irrigated hay meadows and uplands on the property provide key wildlife habitat for a diversity of species, including the greater sage-grouse, the North American river otter, the bald eagle, waterfowl and other birds, and mammals. The property is including in Colorado Parks and Wildlife’s State Wildlife Action Plan and has been identified by CPW as overall range and production area for the greater sage grouse. CPW has confirmed that a bald eagle winter concentration area along Troublesome Creek is entirely located within the property.