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You beat me to it. Great news. Thank you to all who have supported the local, grass roots efforts of Friends of Browns Canyon to accomplish the goal of permanent protection...it only took 20+ years...
 

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I love the news! My only concern is that one day the BLM and NF will want to make drastic changes. This is the Government we are talking about and they don't always keep their word. There is no doubt that the economic benefit will be amazing for Chaffee County. I think this may also help turn around the slump that the Ark is having with Clear Creek. Many people are going to be interested in seeing this new Monument. Great day for all those people who worked hard in getting this to happen. I remember hearing talk about this when I first guided on the Ark in the late 90's. Let's get it on!


Woke up this morning at 10:13.
 

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Old Guy in a PFD
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Old guy Schutzie recalls discussion of Brown's canyon when we were fighting McPhee; the consensus then was that Dolores deserved wild and scenic river designation before Browns was protected. But, we all agreed they needed protection, along with the Yampa.

Glad to see at least one area get protection, to late for the Dolores (RIP); now onto Yampa!
 

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A Political Theorist
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Will lift a glass at the Leftover Salmon show tonight!

Yes, eternal vigilance will be needed to help the good folks inside government to protect the Browns Canyon National Monument against the type of government evildoers who caged the Dolores.

Shutzie, RIP is premature for the Dolores. She ain't dead, yet, but is being held hostage and tortured daily by the Wrecked Bureau and its evildoing allies. Wild & Scenic is still on the table, along with Wilderness and other special public land protections and, of course, the inevitable invasion of the exotic clams that could damn all dams.

The Browns Canyon victory provides me hope that the Dolores can be returned to its pre-McPhee grandeur by determined, organized, caring people who engage our government. Thank you to all involved.
 

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I'm confused as why the Government will not release the information that Obama has for the Monument until it's signed and law. Chaffee County said today the know no info and will not no anything until it becomes law. They are saying it's similar to the bill that was in Congress. Is this normal or a back handed way to get something else done? Please tell me your opinions on this.


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In my opinion, there is too much uncertainty to wholeheartedly agree that this is (was) a good idea.
First, it takes a lot of work and organizing to get a President to designate a Monument so I can honestly say congratulations to those years of hard work. It sounds like a lifetime of commitment for some folks.

But I agree with the above. Obama is designating three monuments today and only two of them sound like they fit within the actual intent of the Antiquities Act. I am all for protecting historical or archaeological sites by Presidential action. That said, Brown's wasn't qualified for a "scientific" justification, neither the terrain or river really satisfy any modern need for science. There is something unseemly and unjust about continuing to expand the power of the Executive, even when it happens to align with ideals I have. The Supreme Court has ruled in favor of broad interpretations of the Antiquities Act but that is once again about law not justice.

As an environmentalist I fully recognize the importance of protecting river and riparian corridors from extractive industry, at least some. We have lost and degraded the vast majority of riparian corridors in the west which affects every level of ecology. That said, this seems to be about end game politics and not about a "just" form of governance and designation. I come from a school of environmental law that believes the long term benefits of protection can easily and readily be compromised by HOW we choose to protect our lands. There are a ton of examples in the West in which unilateral presidential action has led to decades of increased social tension and often the degradation of lands.

And to be honest....something totally rubs me the wrong way about the primary reason for this being economic. Its honestly covered in the vast majority of press. I recognize AW is working towards access and environmental protection but the designation required aligning with an economic imperative that isn't really aligned with most modern ecological concepts. More people along the Arkansas River Valley is not consistent with increased protection, plain and simple. Recreational tourism can be better for the land but this "more is better" mentality rarely is.

Could be wrong.

Phillip
 

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I'm glad the land is protected but I don't see what the economic benefit is. Can you actually drive into the monument? Is there something to actually see for the typical tourist? Hopefully the answer is no and the place doesn't turned into a industrial tourism site (other than the river which is already a shit show).
 

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The economic benefit will be huge for Chaffee county. More people coming to the monument means more money being poured in to gas stations, restaurants, liquor stores, hotels, bars etc. The rafting companies will really stand to do a lot more business. I don't think they actually met the monument will bring money itself but the secondary benefit of having people see the monument will bring more cash into the local economy.
That's only my opinion.


Woke up this morning at 10:13.
 

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The economic benefit will be huge for Chaffee county. More people coming to the monument means more money being poured in to gas stations, restaurants, liquor stores, hotels, bars etc. The rafting companies will really stand to do a lot more business. I don't think they actually met the monument will bring money itself but the secondary benefit of having people see the monument will bring more cash into the local economy.
That's only my opinion.


Woke up this morning at 10:13.

and what is this "monument" you speak of? It's a canyon with no access other than the river?
 

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I'm not for sure what it is yet, the Government hasn't released the information concerning the "monument". I just know being a river guide on the Ark for 20 seasons, that this will bring lots of interest and with that comes money. I'm not totally for this "monument" but nobody can say it won't bring money. I think we may have sold our souls.


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Its the area proposed by Udall. The river is the most common access by far, but there are trailheads at Ruby Mountain (with map kiosk), and Turret,as well as access at Hecla if you wade or float across the river, and multiple access points near Aspen Ridge.

I have no doubt commercial rafting will increase, and hiking will increase...but I don't think more hikers is a bad thing. The area is very rugged with few trails and exploring is very difficult. A few more trails would be nice.

Beyond that I'm done arguing it with people, it seems like all the haters came out of the woodwork when this got announced (not here, FB, etc..).
 

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I think discussions without people getting out of line is healthy and it allows people to get other point of views.
I just read that the designation for the monument is similar to the proposal that udall had. We will see how it all works. Chaffee County is a huge agricultural area with cattle and such. I just hope that grazing and water rights will be grandfathered in and cannot be taken out after a set amount of time.
One thing that this does show that you can get things done, they just might take 20 years or so to do it.


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My question is: How is this going to effect river access, permits, fees, flows, etc.? Will the state of Colorado still have jurisdiction over the waterway itself? Federalization of public lands isn't always a good thing. I believe we could possibly see higher user fees, more restrictions on the number of boaters, especially privates, and no camping or picnicking on river-left, which is within the designated wilderness area.

And lets not forget that the Feds can shut things down on a political whim as they did in the fall of 2013. Here in the Ozarks, the Current, Jacks Fork, and Buffalo National Riverways were closed to boating & camping for two weeks for no good reason.

I would have to have more info before I decided whether this is a good or bad thing for boaters. :?

Terry Prater
 

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I think discussions without people getting out of line is healthy and it allows people to get other point of views.
I just read that the designation for the monument is similar to the proposal that udall had. We will see how it all works. Chaffee County is a huge agricultural area with cattle and such. I just hope that grazing and water rights will be grandfathered in and cannot be taken out after a set amount of time.
One thing that this does show that you can get things done, they just might take 20 years or so to do it.


Woke up this morning at 10:13.
I obviously agree with this philosophy of discussion. While I constructively criticize the process I in no way endorse the vitriolic remarks by some on the opposition side. Calling this a "land grab" is ridiculous and inaccurate and some of the comments about Obama are beyond despicable (a 7 year trend). Luckily this is one of the few places I am active and no longer see the worst of internet and political behavior.

I firmly believe I can recognize the hard work and positive intentions of all of the people who made this happen while also being against several aspects of it. I don't believe in the classic binaries so many conversations fall into.

Phillip
 

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My question is: How is this going to effect river access, permits, fees, flows, etc.? Will the state of Colorado still have jurisdiction over the waterway itself? Federalization of public lands isn't always a good thing. I believe we could possibly see higher user fees, more restrictions on the number of boaters, especially privates, and no camping or picnicking on river-left, which is within the designated wilderness area.

And lets not forget that the Feds can shut things down on a political whim as they did in the fall of 2013. Here in the Ozarks, the Current, Jacks Fork, and Buffalo National Riverways were closed to boating & camping for two weeks for no good reason.

I would have to have more info before I decided whether this is a good or bad thing for boaters. :?

Terry Prater
This seems to be one of the biggest misconceptions about the new monument. The river itself is not included. In fact there is a 50' easement for the railroad before the monument boundary starts. The river, its access points, and riverside campsites will all remain under the jurisdiction of Colorado Parks and Wildlife/Arkansas Headwaters Recreation Area. The management plan that has been in place since the state park was established will still regulate river travel. If there are any changes to river regulations it will be a public process including a scoping period.
 

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Imeyrs, thank you for clearing that up for me. I actually just heard about this on the news yesterday and was a little concerned. If the river itself is unaffected, then I believe this is a good thing. :grin:
 

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and what is this "monument" you speak of? It's a canyon with no access other than the river?
There is a road the whole length of that section of river......that could be used for accessing the canyon for hiking and fishing. You just need to remove the metal and timbers that take up the middle of the road. :mrgreen:
 
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