Gunnison Valley Forever

Hosted by:The Trust for Public Land
Trampe Ranch Crested Butte and Gunnison, CO

Campaign Details

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Saving the Best of Our Valley!

Scattered across 30 miles of river bottom from Gunnison to Crested Butte to the doorstep of Gothic, the lands owned by Trampe Ranch are some of the most familiar, productive, beautiful, and scientifically significant in the Gunnison Valley.

These 6,000 acres of heritage ranchlands help define the character and sense of place of our communities—by complementing the wild nature of nearby public lands, these private ranchlands help support our outdoor economy and enhance existing recreational opportunities.

Too often, family ranches like these are lost to development. Now, for a limited time, you have the opportunity to forever protect the productivity, beauty, and heritage of the Gunnison Valley by helping to conserve this important ranch.

The Vision

The protection of Trampe Ranch is perhaps the most ambitious conservation project in Gunnison Valley history. Conserving these lands—collectively the most productive acreage to be protected in the valley—would:

  • Forever prevent subdivision and development of some of Colorado’s most scenic landscapes
  • Support the visitor economy by preserving views of meadows, river bottoms, rolling hills, and mountainsides from more than 125 miles of local roadways and trails
  • Ensure the continued, environmentally sensitive operation of a ranch that generates an estimated 20 percent of Gunnison County’s agricultural economy
  • Safeguard three miles of the East River and one mile of the Gunnison River while securing senior water rights on these streams—keeping the valley’s water in the valley forever
  • Provide wildlife habitat in seamless continuity with surrounding public lands
  • Encourage more ranchers to use easements to keep their land productive and open as an alternative to development
  • Protect a landscape long used by the historic Rocky Mountain Biological Laboratory for internationally significant studies on the long-term effects of climate change on alpine plants and animals

Once the land is protected, the easements will be held and monitored in perpetuity by The Nature Conservancy, whose stewardship ethic fits well with how this ranch has always been managed. The easements ensure these lands will never be subdivided for development.

Our Goal

Private funding and community support is essential to close the funding gap and demonstrate to public funders the community’s commitment to protecting this historic landscape, so important to our valley’s character and economy.  Every gift counts.

The importance and urgency of protecting this ranch is widely recognized in Colorado and across the nation. We have raised $15 million in local, state and federal funds, which must be matched by private funds in order to be unlocked for this effort.

A Thank You to Our Campaign Partners

An array of organizations and supporters are aligning behind the landmark effort to protect Trampe Ranch. In addition to The Trust for Public Land, which is coordinating the project, partners include The Nature Conservancy, the Rocky Mountain Biological Lab, the Gunnison Ranchland Conservation Legacy, and the Crested Butte Land Trust.

About The Trust for Public Land

The Trust for Public Land creates parks and protects land for people, ensuring healthy, livable communities for generations to come. Millions of people live within a ten-minute walk of a Trust for Public Land park, garden, or natural area, and millions more visit these sites every year. We believe that everyone should have close-to-home access to an outdoor space to play, learn, grow and interact with one another. To learn more about The Trust for Public Land, visit

Photo credits:, John Fielder and Barbara A. East. 

Video credit: Great Outdoors Colorado

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