Vet Voice Foundation
P.O. Box 11559 Portland
President Joseph R. Biden
The White House Washington, DC 20500
Dear Mr. President:
We are writing to urge you to use the powers granted to you under the Antiquities Act to designate the Camp Hale-Continental Divide National Monument in Colorado. As you know, this request was recently made by Senators Bennet and Hickenlooper, Governor Polis and Representative Neguse and is widely supported on the ground and by the signatories here.
We recognize and thank you for making the conservation of America’s public lands and waters a priority by committing your administration to the important goal of conserving 30% of this nation’s lands and waters by 2030. Your ‘America the Beautiful’ Initiative has made strides over the past 18 months, and designation of Camp Hale-Continental Divide National Monument will contribute to this goal.
The Camp Hale-Continental Divide National Monument would be made up of two areas – Camp Hale and the Tenmile Range – that Colorado’s congressional delegation has been working to protect for years. Camp Hale played a vital role in the training of the 10th Mountain Division for alpine warfare during WWII, as well as in the birth of the ski economy in Colorado. Tenmile Range was central to Camp Hale’s training regimens. It also includes Quandary Peak, one of the most climbed of the famed “fourteeners” in Colorado, and a section of the Continental Divide, the geologic boundary along the Rocky Mountains separating the eastern and western watersheds of the United States.
The Colorado Outdoor Recreation and Economy (CORE) Act, which includes protections of these areas and more, has passed the House of Representatives five times but has unfortunately stalled in the Senate over several Congresses, despite the support of both of Colorado’s Senators. While we continue to work with lead sponsors Senator Bennet and Representative Neguse to pass the entirety of the protections included in the bill, it is vital that you act to immediately protect the areas within the proposed Camp Hale-Continental Divide National Monument to honor the few surviving 10th Mountain Division veterans and to protect the area for future generations of Coloradans and Americans alike. We also ask for your leadership in protecting the Thompson Divide from development and securing protections for the Grand Mesa Uncompahgre and Gunnison National Forests.
As you move to implement your conservation goals, we ask that you designate Camp Hale-Continental Divide as a national monument through the Antiquities Act. This action will continue a longstanding tradition of bipartisan support for protecting our nation’s most special places, historic landmarks, and objects of historic and scientific interest while responding to the community-led desires to protect our shared public lands. We also hope this action will pave the way for additional bold actions by your administration to permanently protect our treasured lands. Thank you for your commitment to our public lands and to honoring our veterans and their families.
Vet Voice Foundation
Californians for Western Wilderness
Coalition to Protect America’s National Parks
Conservation Lands Foundation
Conservation Society of California, Oakland Zoo
Continental Divide Trail Coalition
Dolores River Boating Advocates
Friends of Plumas Wilderness
Grand Junction Area Chapter – Great Old Broads for Wilderness Great Old Broads for Wilderness
Hispanic Access Foundation
Hunters of Color
Information Network for Responsible Mining
League of Conservation Voters
National Parks Conservation Association (NPCA)
National Wildlife Federation
Partnership for the National Trails System
Rocky Mountain Recreation Initiative
San Juan Citizens Alliance
Sheep Mountain Alliance
Soda Mountain Wilderness Council
The Mountain Pact
The Wilderness Society
Trust for Public Land
Western Leaders Network