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Law Enforcement - Target Shooting

BLM Law Enforcement Target Shooting

Target shooting can be a fun and challenging activity and is generally allowed on public lands in Colorado except in developed recreation sites or areas.  Target shooting may also be restricted in some units of the National Landscape Conservation System. 

Shooting, possession and use of firearms are allowed on public lands managed by the BLM provided that the specific shooting activity:

• Does not create a public hazard, public nuisance or direct threat to public safety and use.  This includes the shooting of any weapon from, across, or toward any road or trail, regardless of the road or trail surface, shooting in an unsafe manner, or shooting in an unsafe direction.

• Does not damage or destroy natural features, native plants, cultural resources, historic structures or government and/or private property.  This includes using any vegetation or structure as a target, backstop or target holder.

• Does not facilitate and create a condition of littering, refuse accumulation and abandoned personal property.  The shooting of any glass bottle, container, or material that would break into small pieces and create a hazard or litter is prohibited.  All spent shells or brass are considered litter and must be removed by the shooter.

• Does not violate an existing use restriction, closure order or supplementary rules notice. 

BLM Law Enforcement Target ShootingIn addition, you must not possess or discharge a firearm or explosive device in violation of any Colorado State Law.  This includes possession of a firearm while under the influence of alcohol or of a controlled substance, carrying a concealed weapon in violation of State law, and the possession or control any firearm, other than a pistol or revolver, in any motor vehicle unless the chamber is unloaded.

If you have specific questions on areas that may be appropriate for target shooting please contact the BLM field office with jurisdiction over the area you wish to visit.  

For a map of the field office boundaries, address and telephone numbers please visit the BLM Colorado Home Page at:

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• ALWAYS keep the gun pointed in a safe direction.

• ALWAYS keep your finger off the trigger until ready to shoot.

• ALWAYS keep the gun unloaded until ready to use.

• Know your target and what is beyond.

• Know how to use the gun safely.

• Be sure the gun is safe to operate.

• Use only the correct ammunition for your gun.

• Wear eye and ear protection as appropriate.

• Never use alcohol or over-the-counter, prescription or other drugs before or while shooting.

• Store guns so they are not accessible to unauthorized persons.