Cirque Meadows by Adam Johnson
> Departments > Natural Resources > Laramie Foothills > Red Mountain Open Space Proposed Vision

Red Mountain Open Space Proposed Vision

Ecological Resources

  • Protection of the high ecological values at Red Mountain Open Space (RMOS) is a primary management goal.
  • Red Mountain Open Space and the Laramie Foothills (LF) area contain one of the most extensive high-quality foothills shrubland-grassland complexes on the Front Range. It is for this reason that TNC has designated the LF as one of their primary sites to work in the nation, and that the Natural Resources Conservation Service is using RMOS as a reference baseline site for ecological communities for the state.
  • Colorado Natural Heritage Program (CNHP) has designated the open space as a very high significant biodiversity site supporting imperiled lower montane-foothills shrubland communities, declining grassland species, and globally rare foothills riparian woodland plant communities.
  • Consider using fire and grazing to maintain high ecological values at large scale.
  • Recognize high quality ecological values when considering recreation and public access - including the appropriate carrying capacity, amount & types of use appropriate, etc.
  • Monitor vegetation changes and management actions over time.

Cultural Resources

  • Protection of archaeologic/historic resources is a primary goal of management at RMOS.
  • High archaeological values exist on RMOS and are currently being inventoried.
  • Interpret without making public access to any sensitive archaeologic/historic sites.
  • Consider a future educational facility component (in partnership with Fort Collins).
  • Develop a cultural resource management plan.

Western Heritage

  • Continue ranching for vegetation management, community goodwill and education of western heritage.
  • For conservation easement lands or sensitive resource areas, the ranching tradition/western heritage and resource values of this larger landscape will be interpreted via pictures, etc.
  • Minimize conflicts with ranching - ie: Old West (ranching) vs. New West (recreation).
  • Consider heritage tourism and its role at RMOS.

Outdoor Recreation

  • Consider hiking, biking, horseback riding, wildlife watching, photography, bird viewing, all from designated trails and limited high quality hunting as allowable uses.
  • No motorized access, liveries, off-trail use or rock climbing allowed.
  • Consider per DOW recommendation no dogs - impact to high ecological values, we allow dogs at all our other properties except 2 miles at Fossil Creek and 1.7 miles at Rimrock.
  • Do not consider any commercial uses: high ecological values/minimize large numbers
  • Consider guided educational tours
  • Consider future backcountry designated camping based on interest, feasibility, & resource impacts.
  • Manage by zones (developed, frontcountry, backcountry, primitive, sensitive, etc.).
  • Consider separation of some recreational uses from others.
  • Determine ways to minimize weed introduction due to high quality ecological value.
  • Consider phasing in facilities over time based on type and level of visitation & budget.
  • Need high ranger presence for management and protection of resources, consider a staff base of operations.
Background Image: Cirque Meadows by Adam Johnson. All rights reserved.