$1M Awarded to Conserve Ranchland in Saguache
On Friday, December 15 the Great Outdoors Colorado (GOCO) Board awarded The Trust for Public Land (TPL) a $1,010,000 grant to conserve 5,002 acres of working ranchland and associated water rights in Saguache County.
The project will contribute to 20,000 acres of land along the Saguache Creek permanently protected by TPL, GOCO, and other partners over the course of decades.
This latest conservation effort will keep land in agricultural production, protect significant wildlife habitat, and ensure water quality benefiting humans and wildlife. The land to be conserved contains 22 miles of creeks and more than 2,300 acres of wetlands, safeguarding wildlife habitat for more than 50 species of animals and protecting Colorado’s water supply.
The properties are located in one of the very few locations in Colorado where healthy populations of elk, mule deer, moose, mountain lions, Rocky Mountain bighorn sheep, and pronghorn coexist. Conserving the properties will also protect high-priority water rights and ensure water quality for native fish species.
To date, GOCO has invested $14.5 million in projects in Saguache County and conserved more than 38,000 acres of land there. GOCO funding has supported Center’s town park, Saguache’s Vista Grande Park, and Crestone Peak, among other projects.
Great Outdoors Colorado (GOCO) invests a portion of Colorado Lottery proceeds to help preserve and enhance the state’s parks, trails, wildlife, rivers, and open spaces. GOCO’s independent board awards competitive grants to local governments and land trusts, and makes investments through Colorado Parks and Wildlife. Created when voters approved a Constitutional Amendment in 1992, GOCO has since funded more than 5,000 projects in urban and rural areas in all 64 counties without any tax dollar support. Visit GOCO.org for more information.