The Hidden Gems Wilderness Campaign, a citizen-generated plan, is seeking designation of major new wilderness additions on the White River and Gunnison National Forests and nearby Bureau of Land Management lands, to grant the highest protection to some of Colorado’s most precious and threatened public and wildlife lands.
The Gunnison portion includes about 36,000 acres. The campaign aims to address the concerns of all stakeholders, making boundary adjustments for various forest user groups. A growing number of citizens and businesses have voiced their support for the effort, citing the economic value of wilderness, a vast resource for the state’s tourism economy. After gaining the approval of the Gunnison Board of County Commissioners in 2010, the proposal is now ready for congressional consideration. Senator Michael Bennet has signaled that he is ready to start working on legislation for Hidden Gems areas in Gunnison and Pitkin counties. The campaign also continues to work with Senator Mark Udall and Congressman Scott Tipton on the proposal.
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