The Estes Valley Land Trust closed on a new conservation easement near the Dunraven/North Fork Trailhead, north of Glen Haven, Colorado. The conservation easement permanently protects important wildlife habitat for black bear, elk, mule deer and mountain lion and shares a border with Roosevelt National Forest more than two miles in length.
“I want to thank Don and Carole Cheley for generously donating a conservation easement to preserve wildlife habitat and ensure that the public continues to have sustainable access to our national forests”, said Jeffrey Boring, Executive Director of the Estes Valley Land Trust. “For more than 100 years the Cheley family has championed conservation and youth development through access to the outdoors and this conservation easement is a testament to Don and Carole’s legacy.”
The Cheley easement also ensures that an existing public trail from Dunraven Glade Road will remain accessible forever, allowing hikers, backpackers and other trail users to access more than 20 miles of trail in the Comanche Peak Wilderness, near the eastern border of Rocky Mountain National Park. In the last few years, there has been a major increase in outdoor recreation interest in the Estes Valley and throughout the Front Range. “Preserving land and protecting historic trails is a great 1-2 punch that better serves the public”, said Boring.
This conservation easement transaction would not have been possible without financial support from the Larimer County Natural Resources Department and Keep it Colorado, a statewide non-profit organization that supports Colorado land trusts. The Estes Valley Land Trust and Larimer County have a long history or working together to conserve land. “Larimer County Natural Resources is pleased to assist the Estes Valley Land Trust in conserving the Cheley property”, noted Meegan Flenniken, Land Conservation, Planning and Resource Division Manager.
This is the first time the land trust has partnered with Keep It Colorado on a conservation transaction. “We’re proud to have supported Estes Valley Land Trust in making the Cheley family’s wishes come true,” said Melissa Daruna, Executive Director of Keep It Colorado. “Protecting essential habitat our wildlife need for survival while giving Coloradans places to explore nature is a priority for us.”
About the Estes Valley Land Trust - Founded in 1987 by Estes Park residents, the Estes Valley Land Trust is a nationally recognized land conservation organization that has preserved nearly 10,000 acres of land and some of the most iconic landscapes in the Estes Valley. More than 400 members support the Estes Valley Land Trust annually and additional information is available at www.evlandtrust.org.
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