Colorado Ranching for Wildlife Program
Ranching for Wildlife (RFW) program for Colorado lands organizes hunting access to private ranches. Private Colorado ranches are not otherwise open to the public. The RFW program encourages private landowners to open their properties to public hunters from Colorado who draw licenses. Participating landowners agree to provide healthier open space habitat.
The Ranching for Wildlife alliance helps keep the hunting heritage alive in Colorado. It has boosted public access to over 1.2 million acres. Seasons and license allocations are in place to increase hunter harvest on member ranches and public lands.
Landowners Negotiate Hunting Licenses
As part of the program, landowners negotiate with the Colorado Parks and Wildlife department (CPW). The parties determine how many licenses will be issued and for what species. Landowners agree to improve habitat for game animals and non-game animals alike. RFW has successfully improved active wildlife habitat on over 50,000 acres annually.
Hunters help Manage Wildlife
Hunters assist all parties to manage wildlife populations. Participating hunters must be residents of Colorado and obtain licenses through the Colorado Parks and Wildlife’s draw process. Licenses are specific to species and the ranch. The species offered by individual ranches varies. The complete list of species includes elk, deer, Pronghorn, black bear, turkey, moose, and bighorn sheep. A set of rules developed by each landowner will be given to the winning licensee.
Colorado Ranches Welcome Hunters
Ranches and ranch personnel agree to welcome the hunting guests and provide advice on the best locations to harvest animals and hunting strategies. After each hunt, the Colorado Parks and Wildlife staff contact numerous hunters, surveying their level of satisfaction with the services of the private landholders.
Purpose of Ranching for Wildlife
Begun in 1986, the purpose of the RFW was twofold: 1) To improve access to private lands for hunters, and 2) to form a wildlife management partnership with participating landowners. The program now enrolls 27 ranches. Ranching for Wildlife is also responsible for improving the grazing systems for livestock on 85 percent of these enrolled ranches.
Over 30 percent of participating ranches donate the hunts to conservation organizations. These monies can be used to improve habitat elsewhere.
Colorado Ranch Real Estate Agents
Request information about Colorado hunting land. Contact Dave Harrigan or Hunter Harrigan at Harrigan Land Company at (800) 524-1818. Specializing in large ranch and recreational properties in Colorado, Wyoming, New Mexico, and Utah.