Friends of Browns Canyon
The mission of Friends of Browns Canyon (FOBC) is “To protect, conserve, and enhance the ecological and aquatic resources of the wildlands within Browns Canyon.”
FOBC, a 501(c)3 nonprofit, was instrumental in the campaign to gain permanent protection, through President Barack Obama’s 19 February 2015 proclamation (under the authorities of the Antiquities Act of 1906) of Browns Canyon National Monument.
FOBC works on conservation projects in the area now, and will soon embark on assisting the Bureau of Land Management (BLM), the United States Forest Service (USFS), and Colorado Department of Parks and Wildlife (DPW) in developing the Resource Management Plan that will guide management of Browns Canyon National Monument for years to come.
BROWNS CANYON ATTAINED PERMANENT PROTECTION ON FEBRUARY 19, 2015 WHEN PRESIDENT OBAMA SIGNED THE PROCLAMATION CREATING BROWNS CANYON NATIONAL MONUMENT.
Browns Canyon National Monument, including the Browns Canyon Wilderness Study Area (WSA), covers approximately 22,000 acres of federally- and state-managed public lands in Chaffee County, Colorado. The area consists of the riparian corridor, stunning rock spires, hoodoos, and granite outcroppings. Wooded drainages lead from the river to upland areas covered with aspen, limber pines, Douglas firs, and subalpine grasslands. The variety of terrain in such a small space and relatively low elevation make Browns Canyon National Monument unique among all of Colorado’s protected public lands.
The history of the Upper Arkansas Valley includes traditional land uses that predate Browns Canyon National Monument. The trains stopped running decades ago, but ranching, hunting, fishing, rafting, horseback riding, hiking and camping traditions continue to play important roles. President Obama’s national monument proclamation protects all of these traditions, ensuring their preservation along with the natural character of this national treasure.
Senator Mark Udall proposed the Browns Canyon National Monument and Wilderness Act in the United States Senate. His bill offered a middle-ground solution, developed from the grassroots up. Udall’s bill stalled but provided the framework for the national monument when President Obama used the Antiquities Act of 1906 to designate Browns Canyon National Monument Feb. 19, 2015.
Browns Canyon National Monument provides ample year-round recreation opportunities for sportsmen and outdoor enthusiasts. The most popular stretch of whitewater river in the country runs through Browns Canyon, where commercial rafting companies offer a variety of float trips. The monument also protects important habitat for bighorn sheep, elk, mule deer and many other wildlife species. The monument’s multi-use trail system accommodates hikers, horseback riders and mountain bikers, while the Arkansas River in Browns Canyon is part of a 102-mile Gold Medal trout fishery.