Colorado Open Lands agreement to preserve 80,000-acre ranch
The 80,000-acre Forbes Trinchera Ranch near Alamosa will be protected under an agreement reached Wednesday with Colorado Open Lands.
"The Forbes family has managed the land for wildlife habitat for decades, and this will make it permanent," said Dan Pike of Colorado Open Lands.
By Deborah Frazier, Rocky Mountain News
The agreement means there will be no commercial development on the ranch, the largest parcel of the 1843 Sangre de Christo land grant in the San Luis Valley.
Malcom Forbes bought the ranch in the 1960s along with another large adjacent parcel that he subdivided into smaller tracts. Those lots were sold internationally through ads in magazines. The Colorado Open Lands agreement covers only the undeveloped ranch.
The tract includes snowcapped peaks, conifer forests, grassland valleys, wildlife and aspen-rimmed meadows.
"Our ranch manager, Ty Ryland, and his father, Errol Ryland, are conservationists, and putting it aside for conservation evolved over time," said Monie Begley, a spokeswoman for Forbes.
Forbes Inc. donated the land to Colorado Open Lands along with an endowment to continue managing the land for wildlife and ecosystem health.
Colorado Open Lands, a nonprofit land trust, has preserved more than 157,000 acres in the state.
The ranch will remain closed to the public except for private groups and hunters through the Colorado Division of Wildlife, Pike said.
The ranch includes Harrison, Napoleon, Trinchera and Cuatro Peaks, numerous streams and creeks, prime habitat for elk, deer, black bears, mountain lions, eagles and bighorn sheep.
Begley said the late Forbes, his four sons and his daughter enjoyed visits to the ranch over the years. The five Forbes children are in their 50s and decided to preserve it.
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