Pridemore Ranch preserved by Trust for Public Land



SALIDA, Colo.–A piece of Colorado ranching history has been permanently preserved by The Trust for Public Land and the Colorado Cattlemen’s Agricultural Land Trust.

Located along the Collegiate Peaks Scenic & Historic Byway along Highway 291 before arriving at Salida, the nearly 400-acre Pridemore Ranch has been in ranching since the late 19th Century. The ranch has been a part of the agricultural, ecological, and scenic heritage of the Upper Arkansas Valley for over a century, after the Pridemore family purchasing the ranch and its water rights almost a ten years ago.

“The Trust for Public Land has been working with the Central Colorado Conservancy and CCALT for over 14 years to help give working landowners conservation options to help them achieve their financial goals, and to protect the working lands and water rights that are the lifeblood to agriculture and public recreation in the Upper Arkansas Valley,” said Wade Shelton, TPL Senior Project Manager.

The Trust for Public Land purchased the development rights to the ranch, ensuring the Pridemore Family can continue to own and work the land, while also preserving its land and water rights from development. Public fishing access will be granted on the ranch along the river through a public fishing lease with Colorado Parks and Wildlife.

“Over the past 10 years our family has worked extremely hard to care for and improve the ranch with the hope that we can make it a part of our family’s long-term legacy,” said Chelsea Pridemore. “Thanks to our work with The Trust for Public Land and CCALT, we can now be confident that the ranch will be and passed on to our children and grandchildren, all while still making the Upper Arkansas Valley such an incredible place.”

CCALT will hold the conservation easement preserving the property in perpetuity, ensuring that this incredible agricultural, ecological, and scenic resource stays that way for future generations.

Chelsea and Casey Pridemore are working with The Trust for Public Land and CCALT to preserve another ranch near Saguache in the San Luis Valley which will preserve critical surface irrigation and water storage rights.

“The Pridemore Ranch is home to five threatened and endangered species, more than six migratory ‘birds of conservation concern,’ over 14 ‘species of greater conservation need,’ and is located within an area of ‘biodiversity significance,’” shares Clint Evans, NRCS state conservationist in Colorado. “That, coupled with the landowner’s conservation ethic, makes the Pridemore Ranch perfect for NRCS’s Agricultural Conservation Easement Program.”

To date, nearly 4,000 acres of productive agricultural land and water rights have been protected in Chaffee County.

To learn more about the Trust for Public Land, click here.

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