Pinedale Field Office

Seasonal Public Land Closures

Winter Closure Map 

Certain BLM administered lands within the Pinedale Field Office are subject to closure to motorized travel and/or human presence during certain time periods in order to protect crucial winter range habitat and wintering animal species.

Mule deer.

Closure Notice!

BLM has implemented a seasonal closure on certain land areas and travel ways including existing roads and two-track trails, to all types of motorized travel, (e.g., snowmobiles, all-terrain vehicles, any vehicle including trucks, sport utility vehicles and cars, motorcycles, etc.) and in the case of elk feedgrounds, closed to human presence.

Areas Affected & Dates of Closure (Annually)

The BLM administered public lands included in these closures are as follows:

  • Winter Range Complexes will be closed to all unauthorized motorized travel from January 1 through April 30 each winter. Use of winter range areas by non-motorized means is still allowed.
    • Ryegrass, Bench Corral, Deer Hills, Calpet & Miller Mountain winter ranges including all BLM administered lands north of Fontenelle Creek, east of the U.S. Forest Service Boundary, west of Highway 189, and south of Horse Creek, which contains approximately 444,000 acres.
    • Mesa winter range including all BLM administered lands east of County Road 110 (East Green River Road), north of County Road 136 (Paradise Valley Road), west of the New Fork River, and south of State Highway 191, which contains approximately 76,000 acres.
    • Signs will be posted at key locations that provide access into the closure areas.
  • Elk Winter Feedground Areas will be closed from November 15 to April 30 each winter to all motorized use and human presence.

    Franz

    T36N, R112Wapproximately 680 acres
    FinneganT30N, R114Wapproximately 1,920 acres
    Bench CorralT32N, R112Wapproximately 2,560 acres
    Fall CreekT33N, R108Wapproximately 160 acres
    Scab CreekT33N, R106-107Wapproximately 2,240 acres
    North PineyT31N, R114Wapproximately 1,080 acres
    Black ButteT36-37N, R114Wapproximately 320 acres
  • After April 30 each year, motorized vehicle use will be limited to existing roads and two-track trails.

Why are these areas closed?

The closures are necessary for the protection of crucial winter range habitat for elk, moose, antelope, and mule deer. Reasons for the closure include the effects of persistent drought and/or severe winter conditions which threaten the health of these wintering wildlife species. Low forage production associated with persistent drought conditions causes animals to go into winter in poor condition. Losses of wintering habitat from development activity can reduce the area available to the wintering animals. These impacts to wintering wildlife are compounded by significant human activity, such as day and night wildlife observation, still and video photography, snowmobiling, and antler gathering. Because of the increased stress the presence of motorized vehicles inflicts on wintering big game during difficult winter periods, the number of animals that will die and the rate of aborting or re-absorption of fetuses on the winter range can increase. This decreases production of young during the following summer. Therefore, closing crucial winter ranges and feedgrounds to motorized vehicles and human presence (feedgrounds) reduces impacts to wintering big game.

Will these areas be closed every year?

Yes, these areas will be closed every year for the protection of crucial winter range habitat. 

Exceptions

Except for travel on highways or county roads, motorized travel within these areas will be allowed only by written authorization from the Pinedale BLM Field Manager. Personnel of the BLM, WY Game and Fish Dept., U.S. Department of Agriculture-APHIS and Forest Service, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, and law enforcement personnel are exempt from this closure when performing official duties. Operators of existing oil and gas facilities may perform routine maintenance or operation or drilling as approved by the BLM, and livestock operators may perform permitted activities.

Violation Fines

Seasonal closure orders may be implemented as provided in 43 CFR, subparts 8341.2 and 8364.1. Violations of this closure are punishable by a fine not to exceed $1000.00, and/or imprisonment not to exceed 12 months. 

For further information contact:

  • BLM Pinedale Field Office
    1625 West Pine Street
    Pinedale, WY 82941
    307-367-5300