The Cross Bar is the only BLM-administered land in the state of Texas. It is a 12,000-acre tract originally purchased by the Federal government in 1931 as part of a program to establish a strategic helium reserve. Today the land is used for a variety of ecological and archeological research projects and for public recreation. The BLM manages the land in cooperation with West Texas A&M University and other cooperating agencies.
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Prescribed Burning on the Cross Bar Management Area Environmental Assessment DOI-BLM-NM-0060-2015-2-EA (15-day comment period begins January 21, 2015)
Cross Bar Serves as Outdoor Classroom for Local High School Students
Recent heavy rains in north Texas didn’t stop the BLM Amarillo Field Office from offering a valuable outdoor learning experience for local students. For the fourth year in a row, students from Caprock High School took part in a day camp May 21, 2015, at the Cross Bar Ranch to learn about natural resource management. The Cross Bar is a 12,000-acre area of public land near Amarillo that is managed by the agency for its ecological, recreational and educational values.
Students spent much of the past school year learning about native plant and animal species in north Texas. The Cross Bar field trip was designed to reinforce those lessons and excite interest in conservation and the challenges associated with public land management. Students spent the day engaged in various hands-on learning activities about habitats, behavior, physiology, and more.
Key partners in this “Hands on the Land” youth initiative included West Texas A&M University, the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department and the BLM Roswell Field Office. Each partner organization provided student and/or professional volunteers to deliver expert instruction.
“It’s a thrill each year to be able to help these kids gain a deeper knowledge and appreciation of the natural world around us,” said Adrian Escobar, Natural Resources Specialist with the Amarillo Field Office and lead coordinator of the event. “It’s one of the greatest values of our public lands, to enrich the lives of this and future generations.”