Protecting Grape Creek

May 30, 2020
Grape Creek proposed Wilderness, located just southwest of Cañon City, is threatened by proposed mineral exploration.
In February, Fremont County approved a Zephyr Minerals permit to expand gold mining exploration onto BLM's Grape Creek Wilderness Study Area and Area of Critical Environmental Concern, which is also proposed for Wilderness in the Protecting America's Wilderness Act.
If approved, this would allow for drilling exploration, drill pads, and piping water out of Grape Creek within the proposed Wilderness.
The Grape Creek watershed and contiguous lands are some of the most intact wild and scenic public lands in the region, and provide habitat and range to numerous wildlife species, as well as providing a number of backcountry recreational opportunities for residents and tourists.
BLM's Grape Creek Area of Critical Environmental Concern (ACEC) is currently managed and protected as a corridor of significant naturalness character with unique high desert riparian resources, scenic and visual qualities, flora, and fauna values, including Rocky Mountain bighorn sheep and peregrine falcon nesting areas. A number of other local wildlife species and habitat would be affected as well. It is important for citizens to get informed about this issue and stay engaged as the process unfolds. Keep in touch with Wild Connections to learn about opportunities to make a difference.