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Release Date: 01/13/12
Contacts: Denise Adamic, BLM Front Range District (719)269-8553    

BLM seeks public comment on expanding Garden Park Fossil Area’s National Natural Landmark designation (01-13-11)

CANON CITY, Colo. – The Bureau of Land Management is seeking public comment on expanding the National Natural Landmark (NNL) designation within the Garden Park Fossil Area. The existing designation was put in place in 1972 and encompasses 40 acres of public lands north of Cañon City.

The proposed project would expand the area of the NNL to include fossil sites on federal lands that are not currently protected by the designation. The designation is not a land withdrawal, does not change the ownership of the area and does not dictate activity. It is a voluntary program administered by the National Park Service that offers assistance to land managers protecting natural heritage resources.

As BLM begins the environmental assessment of this proposal, we want to hear any concerns the public has regarding the proposal. Comments will be most helpful if received by February 15, 2012. The proposal, map and supporting materials are available on-line under the Garden Park Fossil Area section:  and at the BLM Royal Gorge Field Office, 3028 East Main, Cañon City, CO 81212.  Questions should be directed to BLM Geologist, Melissa Smeins at 719-269-8523. Comments may be e-mailed to with “Garden Park NNL” in the subject line or mailed to the above address, attention Melissa Smeins.

Before adding any personal identifying information such as phone number, address, or e-mail address in your comment, be aware that your entire comment—including your personal identifying information—may be made publicly available.  While you may ask BLM in your comment to withhold your personal information, we cannot guarantee that we will be able to do so.

During the 1800s, the Garden Park Fossil Area was responsible for generating worldwide interest in dinosaurs. Fifteen species of dinosaurs, nine of which were new, were recovered from the area, making it one of the oldest and richest fossil sites in the country.

The BLM manages more than 245 million acres of public land, the most of any Federal agency. This land, known as the National System of Public Lands, is primarily located in 12 Western states, including Alaska. The BLM also administers 700 million acres of sub-surface mineral estate throughout the nation. The BLM's mission is to sustain the health, diversity, and productivity of America’s public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations. In Fiscal Year 2015, the BLM generated $4.1 billion in receipts from activities occurring on public lands.

  3028 E. Main Street      Canon City, CO 81212  

Last updated: 01-13-2012