Soldiers called it ‘Camp Hell.’ Biden eyes it as a national monument.

cigaretteman

HR King
May 29, 2001
72,301
51,989
113
President Biden is likely to designate a historic military site in Colorado as a new national monument in the coming weeks, according to two people familiar with the matter, which could bar mining and drilling there.
10 steps you can take to lower your carbon footprint
Colorado’s Camp Hale, a World War II-era military training ground along the Continental Divide in the Rocky Mountains, and the Tenmile Range have attracted visitors for their stunning landscapes and provide habitat for wildlife including elk, bears, otters, lynxes and migratory songbirds.
Biden has yet to create a national monument since taking office. The new designation would bypass gridlock on Capitol Hill, where Republicans have opposed legislation sponsored by Colorado Democrats — including Sen. Michael F. Bennet (D-Colo.), who faces a tougher-than-expected reelection race — to permanently protect these sites and other historic state landscapes.
The official designation of the Camp Hale-Continental Divide National Monument could come as soon as this month, although no final decisions have been made, according to one person familiar with the matter, who like others spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss private deliberations.

During World War II, Camp Hale served as training grounds for the U.S. Army’s 10th Mountain Division, housing up to 17,000 troops. At an elevation of 9,200 feet, the site was ideal for training in skiing, snowshoeing and rock climbing — skills that ultimately helped the soldiers defeat the Axis in Italy. After the war, some of the same soldiers who toiled at what they called “Camp Hell” returned to the region to help launch Colorado’s booming ski industry.
Bennet has urged Biden to protect the area by using his authority under the 1906 Antiquities Act, which gives the president wide latitude to safeguard public lands and waters for the enjoyment of all Americans. The senator spoke to the president about issue on Tuesday.
A Republican who says Trump lost looks to put Colorado’s Senate race in play
Bennet’s bid for a third term has attracted national attention as Democrats battle to keep their razor-thin majority in the Senate. His Republican opponent, Denver business executive Joe O’Dea, acknowledges that Trump lost the 2020 election, unlike many other GOP candidates in toss-up states like Arizona and Pennsylvania.
A White House spokesman declined to comment on the potential monument announcement. Bennet’s office did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Since taking office, Biden has used his powers to restore full protections to three national monuments that had been slashed by former president Donald Trump, including Utah’s Bears Ears and Grand Staircase-Escalante — known for their historical treasures of Native American art and settlements.
Biden invoked the Antiquities Act to protect 1.36 million acres in Bears Ears — slightly larger than the original boundary that President Barack Obama established in 2016 — while also restoring the 1.87 million-acre Grand Staircase-Escalante monument. Biden also reimposed fishing limits in the Northeast Canyons and Seamounts Marine National Monument off the coast of New England that Trump had opened to commercial fishing.
Here's where Biden's conservation record stands
Although it’s unclear how large the new national monument would be, Bennet and other Colorado Democrats have introduced a bill that offers some recommendations for its size and boundaries. The Colorado Outdoor Recreation and Economy Act would protect more than 400,000 acres of public lands, including 28,676 acres surrounding Camp Hale and 17,122 acres in the Tenmile Range. The measure is backed by Sen. John Hickenlooper and Reps. Joe Neguse, Jason Crow, Diana DeGette and Ed Perlmutter.
After passing the House with bipartisan support, the bill has stalled in the Senate amid opposition from Republicans, who have slammed a provision that would withdraw certain areas from new mining and mineral leasing. In May, the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee deadlocked 10-10 over the measure along party lines.
“We need to increase American development of energy and critical minerals,” Sen. John Barrasso (Wyo.), the panel’s top Republican, said at a May hearing. “Now isn’t the time to be permanently withdrawing federal land.”
Over the past 116 years, 17 presidents in both parties have used the law to designate 158 national monuments, according to Aaron Weiss, deputy director of the Center for Western Priorities, an advocacy group.
“There are so many conservation bills languishing in Congress that have local support, but it is hard to get anything through the Senate when it comes to land protection,” Weiss said. “This is exactly why the Antiquities Act exists.”
Soon after taking office, Biden set a goal of conserving 30 percent of the nation’s land and waters by 2030 under the “America the Beautiful” initiative. Administration officials have been eyeing Camp Hale since July 2021, when Interior Secretary Deb Haaland visited Colorado and participated in a roundtable discussion with Bennet and Hickenlooper on their legislation to protect the landscape.
Biden officials have continued to look at other potential national monuments across the country. Last week, Haaland visited a site in southern Nevada known as Avi Kwa Ame, or Spirit Mountain, that is considered sacred by several Native American tribes.

 

cigaretteman

HR King
May 29, 2001
72,301
51,989
113
President Biden will travel to Colorado on Wednesday to designate a World War II-era military site as a national monument, using his executive powers to protect the historic landscape and delivering on a key priority for Sen. Michael F. Bennet (D-Colo.) ahead of next month’s midterm elections.

10 steps you can take to lower your carbon footprint

Biden has yet to create an entirely new national monument, although he has expanded existing national monuments that President Donald Trump slashed in size. The designation will apply to Camp Hale, which served as winter training grounds for the Army in the 1940s and which now provides critical habitat for wildlife including elk, deer, lynxes and migratory songbirds.

The Camp Hale-Continental Divide National Monument will encompass more than 53,800 acres and will also include the Tenmile Range, a mountain range with stunning views that is prized by hikers and rock climbers, according to a White House fact sheet.







In addition to creating the new national monument, Biden on Wednesday will propose withdrawing 225,000 acres in the nearby Thompson Divide from potential new mining or drilling. The Interior Department and the Forest Service will solicit public comments and conduct an environmental analysis on prohibiting energy development there for 20 years.
Tracking Biden’s environmental actions
The move will bypass gridlock on Capitol Hill, where a sweeping bill aimed at protecting Camp Hale and other historic Colorado sites has repeatedly stalled in the Senate. Bennet, one of the longtime supporters of that legislation, faces a tougher-than-expected reelection race as Democrats fight to maintain control of both chambers of Congress.
Bennet, who will appear with Biden in Colorado on Wednesday, is running against Republican Joe O’Dea, a Denver business executive. A spokesman for O’Dea said he opposes Biden’s creation of the national monument, which relies on the Antiquities Act, a 1906 law that empowers the president to safeguard public lands and waters for the benefit of all Americans.


“Joe believes conservation efforts around Camp Hale and the Tenmile Range should be determined by a bipartisan process in Congress, not unilateral and potentially unlawful executive action that could be subject to lawsuits and uncertainty,” spokesman Kyle Kohli said in an email.
A Republican who says Trump lost looks to put Colorado’s Senate race in play
House Republicans, led by Rep. Lauren Boebert of Colorado, raised similar concerns in a letter to Biden last month. The lawmakers added that the Camp Hale designation could lock up land that could be used for mining or timber harvesting.
A spokeswoman for Bennet’s campaign declined to comment. In a statement, Bennet praised the president for prioritizing Camp Hale.
“With every passing year, there are fewer World War II veterans who trained at Camp Hale left to tell their story, which is why it is so important that we protect this site now,” he said.







The legislation backed by Bennet, known as the Colorado Outdoor Recreation and Economy Act, or Core Act, seeks to protect more than 400,000 acres across the Rocky Mountains. The measure — also sponsored by Sen. John Hickenlooper and Reps. Joe Neguse, Jason Crow, Diana DeGette and Ed Perlmutter, all Colorado Democrats — has passed the House four times but has run aground in the evenly divided Senate.
“Every time it passes the House, we get excited that things might happen,” said Brad Noone, a 10th Mountain Division Army veteran who deployed to Afghanistan and now lives in Salida, Colo. “But it always tends to stall out in the Senate. This absolutely feels like the closest we’ve ever come.”
During World War II, Camp Hale housed up to 17,000 troops of the 10th Mountain Division. At an elevation of 9,200 feet, the site was ideal for training in skiing, snowshoeing and rock climbing — skills that ultimately helped the soldiers defeat Axis forces in Italy. After the war, some of the same soldiers who toiled at what they called “Camp Hell” returned to the region to help launch Colorado’s booming ski industry.
Soldiers of the 10th Mountain Division at Camp Hale in 1944. (Aspen Historical Society Knowlton Collection)
One of those soldiers, Pete Seibert, went on to found the Vail Ski Resort, cementing the town’s status as one of the country’s top skiing destinations.


“We just wouldn’t be here if it weren’t for Pete Siebert training at Camp Hale,” said Vail Mayor Kim Langmaid, adding that the site and surrounding public lands “are the lifeblood of our community.”
Soon after taking office, Biden set an ambitious goal of conserving 30 percent of the nation’s land and waters by 2030. Administration officials have been eyeing Camp Hale since July 2021, when Interior Secretary Deb Haaland visited Colorado and participated in a roundtable discussion with sponsors of the Core Act.
Sign up for The Climate 202, a daily newsletter about climate change policy and politics
Last fall, Biden restored full protections to three national monuments that Trump had reduced in size, including Utah’s Bears Ears and Grand Staircase-Escalante — known for their historical treasures of Native American art and settlements. Biden also reimposed fishing limits in the Northeast Canyons and Seamounts Marine National Monument, which Trump had opened to commercial fishing.


Democrats, environmentalists and Indigenous leaders have urged Biden to use his powers to safeguard various other landscapes across the country. In particular, many advocates have focused on a site in southern Nevada known as Avi Kwa Ame, or Spirit Mountain, that several Native American tribes consider sacred.
“This designation shows that President Biden is thinking about his conservation legacy, not just restoring the damage of the Trump years but laying the groundwork for his own legacy going forward,” said Aaron Weiss, deputy director of the Center for Western Priorities, an advocacy group.
“It is our hope,” he said, “that Camp Hale-Continental Divide is the first of many national monuments that the president protects.”

 

funksouljon

HR Heisman
Jan 26, 2004
6,156
7,925
113
COS, CO
Probably should be preserved.


It's kind of cool. I stumbled across it while out looking for camping places. Base is mostly gone, but the foundations and roads still exist. They have an entire valley on the backside of the old base that is off limits as there is a concern of unexploded ordinance. From WW2! Technically closed in 1965.
 

ConvenientParking

HR Legend
Gold Member
Jun 28, 2016
27,182
34,285
113
Now, please make a National Park in Iowa. Expand Effigy Mounds perhaps.

My cousin got married on a plantation and I wanted to send her a fake invitation to my wedding at Effigy Mounds after her divorce but I thought better of it
 

Latest posts