From the Pagosa Springs Sun (Jim McQuiggin):
Southwest Land Alliance Executive Director Michael Whiting announced late last week that the SLA, the Conservation Fund and Great Outdoors Colorado completed the first of three conservation easements on the East Fork Ranch. Located on the upper reaches of East Fork of the San Juan River and just 2.25 miles south of the Wolf Creek ski area, the almost 2,800-acre ranch owned by the McCarthy family has been contracted for conservation easements. What this means is that the McCarthy family has agreed to preserve the natural integrity of the ranch, and the easement will permanently protect the land from commercial or residential development. “Places like East Fork (Ranch) are special places that almost no one wants to see developed, so in the back of our minds, we worry about them. But here in southwest Colorado, we believe strongly in private property rights. So, when a landowner voluntarily steps forward to preserve their land forever, we breathe a little sigh of relief,” said Nancy Cole, SLA Board Chair.
Closing on about 1,000 acres of the ranch, the easement is the first of a three-phase contract that will, over the next two years, eventually include the entire property.
More San Juan Basin coverage here.