BLM winter closures begin Dec. 1 in Eagle, Garfield, Pitkin counties

SILT, Colo. – Annual winter closures to motorized and mechanized vehicles begin Dec. 1 in specific areas managed by the Bureau of Land Management’s Colorado River Valley Field Office to protect critical big game winter range and prevent road damage.

New this year, the Sutey Ranch parcel in Garfield County will be closed to all human use between Dec. 1 and April 15 to prevent disturbance to wintering big game, as determined in the Sutey Ranch Management Plan completed in April 2019.

Elsewhere in the Colorado River Valley Field Office, winter closures to motorized and mechanized use occur in multiple locations in Eagle, Garfield and Pitkin counties annually from Dec. 1 to April 15. In several additional areas of Eagle County, the winter closures are in effect from Jan. 16 to April 15. These areas closed to motorized and mechanized use continue to be open to non-motorized and non-mechanized recreation opportunities such as hiking, snowshoeing, horseback riding and skiing.

Most roads into these seasonally closed areas are gated. The public may notice new gates in some areas such as north of New Castle and the Crown near Carbondale as the BLM implements its 2015 Travel Management Plan. 

A complete list and maps of the areas affected by these winter closures are available on-line at https://go.usa.gov/xP64j and at the Colorado River Valley Field Office in Silt, 2300 River Frontage Road.

Additional seasonal closures include the upper Transfer Trail gate above Glenwood Springs, which was closed Nov. 23 to maintain conditions for snowmobiling. The lower Transfer Trail gate will be managed based on snow and road conditions. BLM’s Wolcott and Gypsum campgrounds in Eagle County and Prince Creek campgrounds in Pitkin County are closed for the winter and will reopen next spring.

“We appreciate the public’s cooperation in helping us protect wildlife and public lands,” said BLM Colorado River Valley Field Manager Larry Sandoval.

People who use BLM-managed lands in the winter can help reduce stress to wintering deer and elk by observing wildlife from a distance and keeping dogs under control, preferably leashed.

For additional information or to report violations in these areas call the BLM Colorado River Valley Field Office in Silt, (970) 876-9000.

 

BLM Winter Closures to Motorized and Mechanized Vehicles

The 557-acre Sutey Ranch parcel in Garfield County is closed to all human entry and uses between Dec. 1 and April 15. 

The following areas are closed to motorized and mechanized vehicles from Dec 1 to April 15:

  • Basalt Mountain (south portion)
  • Boiler-East Elk Creek (north of New Castle )
  • Dry Rifle Creek (east of Rifle Gap Reservoir)
  • East Eagle-Bellyache Ridge except Red Neck Ridge and Boneyard mountain bike trails paralleling County Road 21 (east of Eagle)
  • Fisher Creek-Cattle Creek (north of Carbondale)
  • Flatiron Mesa (south of Rifle)
  • Light Hill (south of Basalt)
  • Red Canyon-Hells Pocket-Bocco Mountain (north of I-70 and south of Castle Peak)
  • Northside of the Red Hill SRMA (north of Carbondale)
  • Gate at Sutey Ranch parking area
  • The Crown, except the mountain bike trails paralleling Pitkin County Road 5 (southeast of Carbondale)
  • Thompson Creek/Holgate Mesa (southwest of Carbondale)
  • West Rifle Creek (west of Rifle Gap Reservoir)
  • Williams Hill (southeast of Basalt)
  • Winter Ridge-Pisgah Mountain-Windy Point-Domantle areas (north of Castle Peak)

In conjunction with Colorado Parks and Wildlife’s request for late season big game hunting access, the following areas will be closed to motorized and mechanized vehicles from Jan. 16 to April 15: 

  • East Castle Peak (eastside of Castle Peak)
  • Greenhorn/Cottonwood Creek ( (north of Gypsum)
  • Hardscrabble (south of I-70 between Eagle and Gypsum)

 

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The BLM manages more than 245 million acres of public land located primarily in 12 western states, including Alaska, on behalf of the American people. The BLM also administers 700 million acres of sub-surface mineral estate throughout the nation. Our mission is to sustain the health, diversity, and productivity of America’s public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations.

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Bureau of Land Management

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Colorado River Valley Field Office

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