As the BLM’s comment deadline approaches, the debate over the land swap has spawned a Facebook page — www.facebook.com/SuteyLandExchangeFacts — created by opponents of the land trade.

PITKIN COUNTY REAL ESTATE — The debate over the proposed exchange of federal land near the base of Mount Sopris for the privately owned Sutey Ranch, north of Carbondale, appears to be dividing valley residents who more commonly find themselves on the same side of the conservation fence. The proposed swap, in a nutshell:

  • The proposed land swap would put the 557-acre Sutey Ranch, adjacent to the Red Hill Special Recreation Area and located in Garfield County, under BLM ownership. The historic water rights from the ranch would also go to the BLM. The Sutey property was purchased by the Wexners with the trade in mind.
  • The BLM would also acquire 117 acres in Pitkin County along Prince Creek Road near the Crown, used by mountain bikers to access BLM roads and trails, plus receive a $1.1 million donation — $100,000 to develop a site-specific management plan for the newly acquired land and $1 million for its long-term management.
  • The BLM would give up 1,268 acres in Pitkin County adjacent to Two Shoes Ranch owned by Leslie Wexner, of Victoria’s Secret renown. It would also give up 195 acres on Horse Mountain, southwest of Eagle.

Go to the BLM site for details about the proposal or to submit a comment.
By Janet Urquhart, June, 15 2012 AT

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Two Shoes Ranch, Carbondale, CO