That’s at least part of the solution in the Arapaho-Roosevelt National Forest’s proposal to amend its forest plan to provide “new rules to govern recreational shooting on national forest land.” The effort is being managed by the Northern Front Range Recreational Sport Shooting Management Partnership, a collaborative effort started in 2013 that also includes Colorado Parks and Wildlife and four counties.
The purpose, from the partnership website:
to develop possible management strategies for this activity on the Arapaho and Roosevelt National Forests. This includes not only identifying areas of the Forests that may or may not be suitable for recreational sport shooting, but also identifying locations that would be conducive to building developed shooting ranges open to the public on public lands.
Proposed closures would not apply to lawful hunting activities on National Forest System lands. In addition, proposed closures would likely not take effect until developed shooting ranges were constructed in the vicinity.
The forest supervisor said the partnership’s approach to the safety concerns is to have the counties build shooting ranges to give people more controlled places to shoot, in exchange for closures of Forest Service land. One of the alternatives being considered is 100% closure of national forest lands. One member of the public opined that it must be a joke, but I think it’s fair to consider whether recreational shooting is compatible with other uses of a national forest. At least outside of areas designated for that use (and maybe areas designated for that use should be under a special use permit like other exclusive uses).
Previously discussed on this blog here.