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Exploring Diamond Breaks


This 36,000 acre Wilderness Study Area consists of a broken land mass known as the Diamond Mountains, part of the eastern extension of the Uintah Range. A dominant feature of the area is a system of northeast-southwest trending mountain peaks, with ridges, draws, and canyons. This series of colorful pinyon-juniper covered red sandstone ridges "break" toward the Green River to the north in Browns Park. The Diamond Mountains provide a dramatic background view from Browns Park.

Access: From Colorado Highway 318 in Browns Park turn south on Moffat County Road 83 across the Swinging Bridge over the Green River. The Swinging Bridge is narrow and has a limited load capacity, it is good for cars and pickups but not travel trailers or motor homes. A dirt road turns left (southeast) and provides access to the Browns Park National Wildlife Refuge and to the east side of the Diamond Breaks area. County Road 83 also continues on north into Utah and through Crouse Canyon which is a small scenic and narrow canyon with a perennial stream and dense riparian vegetation.

Recreation Activities: Spring and fall are the best times, but summer days are not excessively hot, especially at the higher elevations. Float boating and trout fishing on the Green River is excellent. Other activities that can be enjoyed in the area include: photography, nature study, viewing wildlife and enjoying our cultural heritage.

Camping: Browns Park National Wildlife Refuge has a semi-developed campground located at Swinging Bridge.

Trails: There are no developed or maintained trails in the area. However, hiking routes are generally good on or between the ridges in the broad, open draws. The Hoy Trail in Hoy Draw and an old jeep trail in Choke Cherry Draw provide splendid views of the snow capped peaks of the Uintah Mountains in Utah to the west, the Canyon of Lodore to the southeast and Cold Spring Mountain to the north. Elevations vary from 5400 feet near the Green River to 8600 feet in the western portion of the WSA.

Vehicle Use: Although some old jeep trails are still visible, motorized or mechanized vehicles are prohibited.

Wildlife: Many of the upland bird species listed on the Dinosaur National Monument and Browns Park National Wildlife Refuge checklists occur here. Mammals include mule deer, elk, black bear, mountain lion, bobcat, coyote, ground squirrels, cottontail rabbit, jackrabbit, voles, badger, yellow belly marmot, chipmunk, skunk, raccoon and others.

Maps: BLM Canyon of Lodore and Dutch John , Utah Color Quad (scale=1:100,000) are available from BLM offices. USGS Topographic Maps (scale=1:24,000) Swallow Canyon, Lodore School, Canyon of Lodore North, and Hoy Mountain. Topographic maps are available from USGS , Information Services, P.O. Box 25286, Denver, Colorado 80225, phone 1-800-HELP-MAP.

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