In 2016, GOCO awarded its largest-ever, single-transaction grant in the amount of $10 million to The Trust for Public Land, in partnership with The Nature Conservancy and Gunnison Ranchland Conservation Legacy, to conserve the privately owned, 4,377-acre Trampe Ranch in Gunnison County. The ranch encompasses some of the most outstanding scenery in Colorado, extending south from Gothic to Crested Butte Mountain, past Jack's Cabin and along the East River to the Home Ranch, located at the heart of the agricultural lands north of Gunnison.
The easement conserved the natural beauty of the historic property and kept it in operation as a working cattle ranch. The operation accounts for approximately 20 percent of the county’s annual agricultural productivity. The project also conserved one mile of the Gunnison River; three miles of the East River; and habitat for Gunnison sage-grouse, elk, mule deer, black bears, mountain lions, migratory and resident birds, and raptors.
Trampe Ranch provides scenic views for visitors and recreators on surrounding roads and trails, serves as research lands for scientists from the nearby Rocky Mountain Biological Laboratory, and provides a buffer between the resort areas near Crested Butte and the adjacent public lands. Without protection, the property likely would have been sold for development.
For decades before protecting it, ranch owner Bill Trampe was a conservation champion in the region, encouraging his fellow ranchers to permanently conserve their land. Trampe Ranch will be a catalyst for owners of similar-sized ranches to protect Colorado’s natural beauty for generations to come.