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The environment desk at Aspen Public Radio covers issues in the Roaring Fork Valley and throughout the state of Colorado including water use and quality, impact of recreation, population growth and oil and gas development. APR’s Environment Reporter is Elizabeth Stewart-Severy.

PitCo to buy more land in Hunter Creek


The Pitkin County Open Space and Trails board voted Thursday to purchase 10 acres from a private landowner in the upper Hunter Creek Valley.

Dale Will, acquisitions director for the program, said this purchase is key in preventing residential development in the scenic valley.

“The reason we’re so highly motivated to go after it was to protect the entire valley from getting turned into a driveway corridor,” Will said.  

The land is comprised of two mining claims, the Rolland and Mamie lodes, and sits high on a ridge beyond Van Horn Park near Bald Knob.

Credit Courtesy of Pitkin County Open Space and Trails
Courtesy of Pitkin County Open Space and Trails

Open Space and Trails will pay the property owner $1.3 million, plus $200,000 in options to develop elsewhere in the county. An anonymous donor will contribute $100,000 to the purchase, according to Will.

“This is kind of the culmination of decades of work by thousands of people in Aspen to protect Hunter Creek Valley,” Will said.

Pitkin County commissioners will need to approve the deal by the end of the year as a condition of the sale.


Aspen native Elizabeth Stewart-Severy is excited to be making a return to both the Red Brick, where she attended kindergarten, and the field of journalism. She has spent her entire life playing in the mountains and rivers around Aspen, and is thrilled to be reporting about all things environmental in this special place. She attended the University of Colorado with a Boettcher Scholarship, and graduated as the top student from the School of Journalism in 2006. Her lifelong love of hockey lead to a stint working for the Colorado Avalanche, and she still plays in local leagues and coaches the Aspen Junior Hockey U-19 girls.
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