The Wild Connections Conservation Plan (WCCP) was created by the efforts of people who share a deep concern for the well-being of public lands spread across the Arkansas and South Platte headwaters. From hunters and hikers to biologists and volunteer mappers, they worked together to map the boundaries of 100 roadless areas, explore some of central Colorado’s wildest lands, and apply the science of conservation biology. Over a decade, they developed and refined a vision of a network of protected core areas and wildlife linkages. The Wild Connections Conservation Plan describes how this vision can be a reality where it counts – in the everyday policies and management of the Pike-San Isabel National Forests.
The WCCP was published in 2006, and will be evaluated and updated prior to the PSI Forest Plan revision currently scheduled for 2017. While the original data is accurate to the best of our knowledge, conditions on the ground may have changed. Please contact us if you find discrepancies.
Recently Wild Connections expanded mapping and evaluation to BLM roadless areas within the two watersheds. From 2013-2015 approximately 250,000 acres of BLM land was identified as having Wilderness characteristics. These will be incorporated in recommendations for the BLM Royal Gorge Resource Management Planning of 2015. Current information is found here.
WCCP general outline
Introduction and description of the Pike-San Isabel National Forests and Comanche National Grasslands and general threats to public lands.
Wild Connections methodology includes the components of the core reserve system and the three-track approach to network design.
Forest-wide management recommendations for broad categories such as grazing, fire management, invasive species, etc.
Thematic planning framework for management emphases on specific parcels of land across the forest, for example, Wilderness, quiet use areas, motorized recreation, etc.
Geographic complexes, such at Mt. Evans High Peaks, the Arkansas Canyons or the Wet Mountains, with ecology, natural values and a summary of management.
The WCCP can be downloaded as a complete document and accompanying maps. Or you can download the description and map for any of the complexes.