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"There will come a time when the profit of ranching is gone," says Susan Nottingham, 52. "Then what do you do with the land?
GOCO was created by Colorado voters in 1992 and charged with using lottery proceeds to protect open space, parks and wildlife.
"Fragmentation zones," Hillary said, are swaths of wildlands that are being cut off from one another by development. Were the lands north of Montana "fragmented," said Tembec’s Dennis Rounsville, "it would not bode well for the wildlife and the connectivity of the ecosystems."
"We’re looking for a group of ranchers who are ahead of the curve," White said. "Jim made the leap from the adversarial to becoming part of a team."
As for making wealthy newcomers part of the ranching community, it means treating them like anyone else.
"Invite them into your home. Do not wait for them to issue the first invitation; introduce them around," Taylor said. "Include them in community functions. Even if they cannot always participate themselves, their managers and employees normally more than hold up their end in the community."
"Then we hope to help those ranchers improve their production and enhance Montana’s natural resources through common sense conservation."
Larimer project is big winner in grants from state – Great Outdoors Colorado awarded $11.6 million for grasslands purchase
"It’s the untouched Old West exactly as you might envision it," said Cameron, Larimer County’s open lands manager. "To know we’re going to save it is just awesome."
"What I’ve learned," said Heather Knight, "is that home is not a place where people live, it’s a place where people care, about the land, each other, and a shared future."
New research led by Dr. Lance Craighead, one of the world’s top grizzly bear authorities, is calling for the creation of a massive wildlife corridor on the east slope of the Rockies.
"I want my grandson, and his children, to be able to saddle up and ride across this ranch," he said. And he said he had come to understand that the wild creatures are a big part of what makes the land work. "Without them, it wouldn’t be the wild country that it is," he said.
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