Young’s land-exchange comments off base
June 29, 2012
Commissioner candidate John Young’s recent letter regarding the Sutey Ranch land exchange had several inaccuracies.
Young’s statement about the Bureau of Land Management land being an access option to Mount Sopris must be a mistake. The BLM land is landlocked from the Prince Creek side by private land that has never been open to public access. Access to Mount Sopris through BLM land is currently not an option. I have hiked the BLM land and climbed Mount Sopris several times and do not feel the BLM land would provide any decent way up Sopris. Even if public access from Prince Creek could be secured, to reach the Thomas Lakes Trailhead from the Prince Creek subdivision would add roughly eight miles one way, and another 2,500 vertical feet, to the already long trek up Mount Sopris.
Regarding Mr. Young’s remarks about fencing, the BLM land is already fenced, and wildlife is thriving there, according to the Division of Wildlife. Furthermore, the Aspen Valley Land Trust, which would hold the conservation the Wexners intend to put on the land, requires wildlife friendly fencing in all its easements.