Four landowners receive awards for access recognition

Landowners from Colony, Jeffrey City, Wheatland and Baggs, Wyoming are recipients of the 2016 Access Recognition Program.

12/19/2016 3:07:36 PM

Cheyenne - Landowners from Colony, Jeffrey City, Wheatland and Baggs, Wyoming are recipients of the 2016 Access Recognition Program. The program honors landowners who provide access to or through their lands to hunters and anglers.

Each year, the Wyoming Board of Agriculture, the Wyoming Game and Fish Commission, and
Wyoming Wildlife Foundation, partner together to recognize four landowners who contribute significantly to the hunting and fishing tradition of the Cowboy State. In addition to recognition at the winter Stock Growers Association luncheon, each landowner will receive a check for $2,000. The 2016 recipients were recently recognized and presented their awards at the Wyoming Stock Growers Association awards luncheon in Casper.

Landowners receiving recognition this year are:

The Jensen Ranch: Owned and managed by Thorval and Janet Jensen, the Jensen Ranch is a working cattle ranch near Colony. The Jensen Ranch is located along the Belle Fourche River and is comprised of very productive lands, including irrigated hay meadows. Each year the Jensens allow access to hunt white-tailed deer, mule deer, and antelope, charging a minor fee to access their lands.

The Graham Family Ranch: Since 1892 the Graham family has lived and ranched near the Sweetwater River northwest of Jeffrey City. The Grahams have always been welcoming of public access, from hunting and fishing to rock collecting and photography. Approximately 1,480 acres of the ranch are enrolled in the Game and Fish’s Walk-in Area programs for antelope, deer, elk, and rabbit hunting. They also enrolled their portions of the Sweetwater River and Long Creek in the fishing walk-in area program, including a small reservoir for fishing.  By doing this, the ranch provides year round use for hunting and fishing recreation to sportsmen and women.

The Bard Ranch: The Bard Ranch is an extensive ranch in Platte and Albany Counties, including several discrete parcels and encompasses many acres of deeded land. Ranch Operation Leaders, Amy Miller and her husband Brandin, enrolled 11,670 acres of their property in northern Albany County in the Game and Fish Hunter Management Program. The McFarlane Hunter Management Area provides unlimited permission slips for antlerless elk hunting in Elk Area 7. In 2014, the Millers expanded a walk-in area to include a large pasture, increasing this access to nearly 6,700 acres. The area now includes a large portion of the Goshen Rim and provides much needed access opportunity.

The Weber Ranch: Ray and Kathleen Weber are owners and operators of Weber Ranch, running from the Colorado State line to just south of Interstate 80. Habitat on the Weber’s ranch is diversified from sagebrush grasslands to juniper forests. The ranch also contains riparian wetlands, cottonwood groves, and grass meadows. The Weber partnered with their neighbors, the Bureau of Land Management, the Little Snake River Conservation District, the Army Corp of Engineers and the Game and Fish to create a premier wetlands know as the Muddy Creek Wetlands Project. The Weber property remains open to the public to all sorts of recreational activities, including hunting and fishing, asking only to “close the gates behind you.”

Funding for the program is provided by the sale of Commissioner licenses and donations made specifically in support of the award.  

Wyoming Game and Fish Project Coordinator Mark Nelson said the Access Recognition Program is a way to show appreciation for landowners who allow sportsmen and women on their property to hunt or fish. “Thanks to these landowners, there are more places for individuals and families to get outside to enjoy the wildlife and hunt and fish in Wyoming, in addition to helping Game and Fish manage the state’s wildlife resources,” Nelson said.

Photo: Laramie Regional Access Coordinator, Jason Sherwood, speaks in Casper. 

(Wyoming Game and Fish (307) 777-4600)

- WGFD -

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