Letter to the Editor: No Access

As a 75 year old outdoor enthusiast I have watched while many of our recreational opportunities have diminished or totally disappeared over the last 50 years. Some changes were necessary but many seemed arbitrary. This generation of today has no idea how much they have been affected! I am sick of this continued nibbling away of our rights to a hassle free opportunity to enjoy the outdoors. Once an area or opportunity is lost it seems never to be reopened!

Three weeks ago I drove 10 miles north of Lamar, Colorado to Nee Noshe Reservoir to visit my son’s family and close friends that were camping on Bureau of Land Management property managed by the Colorado Division of Parks and Wildlife.

When I arrived the group of families in self-contained trailers told me a CPW employee told them that in the near future they would no longer be able to camp and spend the night there.

This camping area we had used for many years! The access for it was at the end of a county maintained gravel road and did not cross over any private property. Even though the road passed near a farmhouse, access should not be an issue.

The following Monday I met with the Colorado Parks and Wildlife Area Supervisor and was advised that we could still camp there. Two weeks later when we attempted to use our favorite campsite, there were signs at the end of the county road where we accessed public land and also at the exact spot where we camped that emphatically stated “No Overnight Camping.”

I was extremely angry the CPW Area Supervisor had lied to me and reversed policy. When I confronted him the next morning I was informed that he had authorized the closure because the farmer that lived about 250 yards away in the farmhouse had complained about the generators that affected his ability to hear frogs croaking on the rare use Friday and Saturday nights. The farmer also complained that occasionally a vehicle drove down the county road at night to visit the campers!

I live next to a neighbor that has dogs that bark and my son lives in the country adjacent to a county highway where people drive by at night. Do we have the right to have the authorities shut these other folks from living or driving?

The CPW Area Supervisor, as I departed his office, stated “I opened a larger camping area on the west side of Nee Noshe.” In reality he did not open a larger area…he simply did not close it! And in this time of “social distancing” it seems a poor time to force overnight camping with water access to only a small portion of the west side of the Reservoir.

If you agree that this and other never ending pushes to curtail our rights to enjoy our public lands needs to end, please contact:

 

Lamar CPW Office
2500 S. Main St.
Lamar, Colorado 81052

 

Colorado Parks & Wildlife Commission
c/o Commission Assistant
Colorado Parks & Wildlife
1313 Sherman St.
Denver CO 80203
dnr_cpwcommission@state.co.us

 

Jamie Connell, State Director Bureau of Land Management
2850 Youngfield St.
Lakewood CO 80215
Phone 303 239-3600
Email: blm_co_info@blm.gov

 

Sincerely,
Doug and Linda Harbour
808 S. 9th St.
Lamar CO 81052

Filed Under: Letters to the Editor

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