On July 21, U.S. Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke announced that Colorado’s Canyons of the Ancients National Monument is no longer under review and that he will recommend that no modifications be made to the monument. The monument was under review in accordance with President Donald J. Trump’s April 26, 2017 executive order. The recommendation comes after review of public comments and conversations with stakeholders.
Canyons of the Ancients is located in southwestern Colorado, creating part of the state’s border with Utah. The monument was designated in 2000. The monument encompasses 178,000 acres and is managed by the Bureau of Land Management.
“When the president and I began the monument review process, we absolutely realized that not all monuments are the same and that not all monuments would require modifications,” said Secretary Zinke. “Today I’m announcing that Canyon of the Ancients National Monument review process has concluded and I am recommending no changes be made to the monument.Canyons of the Ancients is gorgeous land, but its monument status as the most high-density Native American archaeological sites in the nation is clear. The history at this site spans thousands of years, and the federal protection of these objects and history will help us preserve this site for a thousand more years.”
“This is great news for Colorado and I’m thrilled the Department of the Interior listened to Coloradans and will make no changes to Canyons of the Ancients National Monument’s designation,” said Sen. Cory Gardner. “I repeatedly raised the issue with Secretary Zinke and highlighted the fact that Coloradans cherish our state’s public lands and any review of Canyons of the Ancients should result in no changes to the monument’s designation. The secretary has been a great partner throughout his tenure and understands western issues better than most. I’m proud to have worked with him on this and look forward to continuing to collaborate on issues important to Colorado in the future.”
“I am pleased that Secretary Zinke and the Department of the Interior recognize the cultural and historic significance of Canyons of the Ancients National Monument and will make no changes to the designation,” said Rep. Scott Tipton. “Senator Gardner and I made the case for maintaining the monument as is in May, and I have been encouraged to see the Secretary place a high value on local input throughout this process.”