Gunnison River basin: 10 segments in Delta County deemed not suitable for Wild and Scenic designation by the Lower Gunnison Stakeholders Group

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From the Delta County Independent (Hank Lohmeyer):

The Lower Gunnison Stakeholders Group found a wide range of criteria on which to base its “non-suitable” recommendations. Existing water rights, private property rights, and production agriculture were important. In several cases, streams’ “outstandingly remarkable values” were found already protected by current management regimens. Streams within the NCA and Wilderness especially were found to benefit from the management regimens on their surrounding public lands. Members of the Stakeholders Group felt that official Wild and Scenic designation on some segments would only attract more visitors to them and damage their special characteristics. “The outstanding remarkable values that BLM has identified for these streams and stream corridors are, in many cases, the result of the management practices of local ranchers and, more recently, the BLM’s management practices,” the group found.

The Stakeholders Group did find some conditions in the stream segment corridors it studied to be less than ideal, and they made recommendations for improvement. For example, protection of historical and cultural sites in the corridors should be site-specific. Signage, fencing, and use of volunteer “stewards” to monitor the sites’ conditions were recommended. Other sensitive cultural sites should not be identified publicly to protect their pristine condition…

The 10 stream segments included stretches on the Gunnison River, Rose Creek, Big and Little Dominguez Creeks, Cottonwood Creek, and Escalante Creek.

More Wild and Scenic coverage here. More Gunnison River basin coverage here.

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