MISSOULA, Montana-A spectacular landscape in northeast Nevada will remain intact for elk, other wildlife and public access following a land transfer from the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation to the Bureau of Land Management.
The conveyance prevents residential development on 235 acres of inholdings within Goshute Canyon Wilderness 20 miles north of Ely, Nev.
“Five different inholdings were part of Indian Valley Ranch owned by Michael and Dorothy Hastie, who wanted to see these lands protected in perpetuity rather than developed for cabin sites. When the Hasties approached us for help with this project, we were glad to get involved,” said Bob Hammond, lands program manager for RMEF.
The area, which lies within the Cherry Creek Range, is classic summer range for elk with perennial streams and grassy slopes dotted with sage, bristlecone pine and aspen. Elevation ranges from 6,400 feet to a dramatic 10,200 feet. Deer, mountain lions, chukars, grouse and other species also can be found.
Now managed by the Bureau of Land Management, public recreation includes hunting, horseback riding, hiking, backpacking and primitive camping.
White Pine County commissioners voted unanimously in favor of the acquisition. Several local outdoor and conservation groups voiced support. RMEF obtained funding from a private donor, purchased the land in 2007 and held the property while the Bureau of Land Management gathered takeout funding. The transfer was finalized in late 2009.
In the 1990s, RMEF assisted with a collaborative effort to re-establish elk in the area.
About the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation:
Snowy peaks, dark timber basins and grassy meadows. RMEF is leading an elk country initiative that has conserved or enhanced habitat on over 5.7 million acres-a land area equivalent to a swath three miles wide and stretching along the entire Continental Divide from Canada to Mexico. RMEF also works to open, secure and improve public access for hunting, fishing and other recreation. Get involved at www.rmef.org or 800-CALL ELK.