Colorado Parks and Wildlife is closing the Frank State Wildlife Area near Windsor to all public access north of the Poudre River on both the Larimer County and Weld County portions due to active gravel mining, according to Colorado Parks and Wildlife.
A news release from Colorado Parks and Wildlife said the entire property also is closed to hunting.
The Frank wildlife area is located about two miles east of Interstate 25 just west of Windsor, and it consists of five conservation easements that are monitored and maintained for public access for hunting, fishing and wildlife-related recreation. A local gravel company owns a significant portion of the land including the gravel rights on the east side of the county line, which includes ponds that are currently open for public fishing.
The news release stated that this company expressed its intent to continue mining operations on that portion of the wildlife area, just north of the Poudre River and east of the Larimer-Weld county line starting in the summer of 2014. It is estimated by the company that the mining and reclamation process will take up to five years to complete. Due to the significant public safety issues, the area will be closed to public access and fenced accordingly.
“The Town of Windsor has been in preliminary discussions with Colorado Parks and Wildlife about the possibility of holding the conservation easements and managing the property as a wildlife/natural area as the easements call for,” said Melissa Chew, director of Windsor Parks, Recreation and Culture, in the news release. “We know the public is interested in this property for recreation and we will pursue the possibilities in the coming months.”
Colorado Parks and Wildlife noted that Larimer and Weld counties contain 24 other state wildlife areas for anglers and hunters to use. To locate these properties, go to http://cpw.state.co.us/placestogo/parks/Pages/WildlifeAreaMap.asp.