Colorado

Conservation: Colorado's Continental Divide

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Conservation: Colorado's Continental Divide
Take action

Mason Cummings, The Wilderness Society

Protecting the Continental Divide

The delights of central Colorado’s Continental Divide area are varied--from dramatic mountain peaks with evergreens to valleys with rushing waters. Located in Colorado’s famed ski country near Vail and Breckenridge, and long considered the historic birthplace of the modern outdoor recreation industry, this region continues to be a haven for locals and visitors looking to hike, bike and ski. But the pressure of a growing population and development imperil this landscape. So much in the Continental Divide area is worth protecting--and now is the time to do it. Proposed legislation would protect 98,000 acres of national forest land preserving the area’s history and safeguarding it for both wildlife and people. And we are hard at work to make it a reality.

Why this place matters

Central Colorado’s Continental Divide is a top recreation area for the state. It provides clean drinking water to millions of Coloradans and includes a significant wildlife migration corridor above Colorado’s Interstate-70 for elk, bear and other wildlife.

Unspoiled wildlands
Exceptionally wild, this areas includes 3 proposed wilderness areas and additions to 3 existing areas.
World-famous recreation
Outstanding hiking and other outdoor recreation will continue to thrive with the right protections.
Drinking water
This watershed provides clean water for millions of Coloradans.
Historic home of the 10th Mountain Division
Camp Hale would be preserved as the first ever National Historic Landscape.

The threat

Despite the beauty and majesty of central Colorado, explosive population growth, increasing off-road vehicle use and an aggressive push for extractive development could disfigure the landscape. To defend this wild play space, we are working to pass the Continental Divide Recreation, Wilderness, and Camp Hale Legacy Act.

Running the gamut of conservation protections, this bill protects the most critical alpine wildlife migration corridor that crosses Colorado’s portion of Interstate 70 and preserves prized hiking, biking and backcountry ski areas. It also aims to designate Camp Hale as America's first-ever National Historic Landscape. The site is the historic training grounds for the famed 10th Mountain Division troops who trained in mountain warfare during WWII. Preserving Camp Hale will educate visitors about the veterans credited with contributing to the growth of the outdoor recreation industry in Colorado.

The bill has been introduced multiple times, and we will continue to support it and the elected officials who recognize the importance of defending both history and wild terrain.

What we're doing

  1. Working with locals

    We are working with citizens, businesses, veterans, sportsmen, governmental organizations and conservation groups to protect key wild lands in the heart of Colorado’s Rocky Mountains.

  2. Advancing legislation

    We are advocating for legislation to protect these public lands from development, mining, commercial logging and unnecessary road building.

  3. Educating

    We are educating local communities on the need to protect the Continental Divide.

What you can do
Support protections for Colorado’s Continental Divide by contacting Senator Michael Bennet and Representative Jared Polis to thank them for their support for the Continental Divide Recreation, Wilderness, and Camp Hale Legacy Act.
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