Prescribed Fire Training Opportunity Announced - October 2018

Interested in gaining experience with prescribed fire in southern Colorado and northern New Mexico? See the below announcement and application to participate in the Southern Rockies Prescribed Fire Training Exchange (TREX), organized by our partners The Nature Conservancy - Colorado Program. This TREX is taking place primarily on private land near Raton, NM and/or Trinidad, CO!

Application available HERE.

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2018 Benefit Raffle Winners Announced!

Congratulations to our 2018 Benefit Raffle winners!

Bull Elk Hunt: Lucas S.

Mule Deer Hunt: Mike D.

White-tailed Deer Hunt: Jeff B.

Barbary Sheep Hunt: Fernando R.

Fly-Fishing Trip: Jim W.

Thank you to everyone who purchased tickets this year! Your support of private land conservation is deeply appreciated. Benefit raffle proceeds support our general operations and allow us to focus on the programs and priorities that matter most to our members and communities. Thank you!


RCPP Grant Open House Scheduled

Have questions about the RCPP grant described in our June 27th news bulletin? Please join us at an Open House on July 17th from 3 pm to 6 pm at the Upper Chama SWCD office in Tierra Amarilla. Program managers and project partners will be on hand to answer questions!

Upper Chama Soil & Water Conservation District
17306 State Highway 84/64
Tierra Amarilla, NM 87575

(Across from the Post Office)



Call for Projects on Private Lands - Regional Conservation Partnership Program Funding Available

Call for Applications from Landowners: Rural Conservation Partnership Program (RCPP)

Through a partner effort, the Rural Conservation Partners Program grant "Building Resiliency in the San Juan - Rio Chama Region" was recently approved for $3.25 million in funding. This grant is a collaborative project to implement on-the-ground conservation practices on forest, range, and irrigated lands across a large region of northern New Mexico and southern Colorado, including the Alliance region. Funding is also available for conservation easements on private lands. The  program and application process will be managed by the East Rio Arriba Soil and Water Conservation District. 

Private landowners and public land lessees within the project boundary may be eligble for project funds. See the map below for project boundary and Background Information and Application materials for additionan information.

The first round of applications for RCPP funding are due August 17th, 2018. Additional applications will be accepted on a rolling basis and will be reviewed periodically.

Please download and print the following documents:

Background Information (20 pgs)*
Application (10 pgs)

Mail application to:

East Rio Arriba Soil & Water
19283 US Hwy 84/285, Ste. 112
Hernandez, NM 87537

**Please print and complete the last page of the Background Information (top file) and submit with the  application. Application should total 11 pages.**

For questions about program eligibility, application process, or project implementation please contact:

Norman Vigil, Project Manager

Marcos Valdez, ERASWCD District Manager


For questions about conservation easements, please contact:

Connor Jandreau, Conservation Project Manager
New Mexico Land Conservancy
P.O. Box 6759
Santa Fe, NM 87502

Private lands and public land lessees within the RCPP boundary may be eligible for this program. See Background information and Application above.

Bureau of Reclamation Diversions Tour

On June 22nd at 11 am we will embark on a tour of the Bureau of Reclamation's San Juan-Chama Diversion structures tour! This tour is for members, partners, and invited guests and we will discuss the infrastructure and management of the diversion sites. We will start at the BOR's Chama office and carpool together to the Blanco basin, the start of the diversion tunnel structures. We will then visit all the locations where structures exist to move water from the San Juan basin into the Rio Chama, including in the Blanco, Little Navajo, and Navajo Rivers and the Azotea Outlet where water flows into the Rio Chama basin. The tour will be led by BOR staff from the Chama office.


Time: 11 am to ~ 4 pm (bring a lunch, water, and everything you need for the day)

Bureau of Reclamation - Chama Office: 193 North Pinon Drive, Chama, NM 87520

Join us for our Summer Social at Trout Stalker Ranch in Chama following the tour!

 Water leaves the Azotea Outlet, part of the Bureau of Reclamation's water diversion system that moves water from the San Juan basin into the Rio Chama and eventually into the Rio Grande.

Water leaves the Azotea Outlet, part of the Bureau of Reclamation's water diversion system that moves water from the San Juan basin into the Rio Chama and eventually into the Rio Grande.

Summer Social - Please join us on June 22nd!

Please join us on June 22nd at 5 pm for an evening of free live music, food, drinks, and informative speakers hosted by our friends and partners at Trout Stalker Ranch in Chama, NM! Not a CPLA member? No problem! This event is open to all! Please join us. RVSP HERE.

We will enjoy food, conversation, and live cowboy music. We'll also hear from Mary Stuever, Chama District Forester with New Mexico State Forestry, on the wildfire season and related topics. This is a great opportunity to meet your neighbors!

From Chama: Take U.S. Hwy 64/84 South. Turn right, after the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, onto Seca Dr (CR 343). The entrance to Trout Stalker is on the right, after 600m (1/3 mile). Once through the gate, follow the posted signs for parking and the social location.

From Tierra Amarilla: Take U.S. Hwy 64/84 North. Turn left onto Seca Dr (CR 343). The entrance to Trout Stalker is on the right, after 600m (1/3 mile). If you see the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints on your left, you've driven too far. Once through the gate, follow the posted signs for parking and the social location.

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Mule deer and Elk Status Report Update Published

In 2014, the Alliance contracted with Tom Watts, Southwest Wildlife Services LLC, to complete a study of mule deer and elk in the Alliance region. The resulting report was an attempt to consolidate all of the pertinent information regarding mule deer and elk populations inhabiting the upper San Juan and Chama River Basins for the benefit of CPLA Members and landowners interested in maintaining healthy wildlife populations in the region.

This year, Tom has completed an update to the 2014 report that includes an additional three years of data (2014-2016) and provides a current assessment of elk and mule deer herds in the region. Tom is also working on updates to landowner recommendations, which will be released this summer.

You can read the update HERE.

New informal networking group - The Watering Hole!

Have you ever wished there were more opportunities to chat with your fellow land owners or managers and share stories or ideas in an informal setting? You're in luck! Please join us next Friday at 5 pm at Riff Raff Brewing in Pagosa Springs for the first gathering of "The Watering Hole"! This is a great opportunity for networking and sharing among owners, managers, or anyone involved in land management. The group will meet on the third Friday of every month so if you can't make it this time we'll see you in June!

Friday, May 18th at 5 pm at Riff Raff Brewing, Pagosa Springs.

Welcome Caitlin Barbour - 3rd Year VISTA Volunteer!

This month we welcomed Caitlin Barbour as the 2018-2019 AmeriCorps VISTA Volunteer for Chama Peak Land Alliance and the Bureau of Reclamation! Caitlin hails from Gilroy, California and has a Bachelors of Science in Oceanography from Humboldt State University in California and is enrolled in Fisheries & Wildlife Management at Oregon State University. Caitlin is interested in the environment as a whole, with a particular focus on community collaboration around natural resource management issues.

Caitlin was drawn to this position in New Mexico for the opportunity to work in environmental management, especially the connections to forestry and fisheries projects. So far Caitlin has enjoyed the friendliness of the community and she looks forward to continuing those relationships and creating more in this coming year! Caitlin will be living and working primarily in Chama so look for her around town!

Our 2017-2018 VISTA Volunteer, Emma Kelly, is relocating to Santa Fe, NM for work and school. Emma immensely enjoyed her year in Chama and plans to visit frequently.

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