Develop a River Management Plan for Canyonlands National Park

Canyonlands National Park » Develop a River Management Plan for Canyonlands National Park » Document List

The National Park Service (NPS) is beginning planning for a comprehensive river management plan for the Green and Colorado rivers. The plan and future compliance will include concepts for natural and cultural resource protection and address best practices for visitor and commercial use on the rivers. The NPS and the park will work with its partners, stakeholders, Tribes, and the public to develop the plan in compliance with legal and policy requirements. There will be several opportunities for the public to participate and comment in this process. 

A comprehensive river management plan is needed to update guidance and replace the 1981 River Management Plan to address changes in visitation and changing or new uses of the rivers within Canyonlands, and to update best management practices to preserve natural and cultural resources along the river corridors. Section 5(d)(1) of the Wild and Scenic Rivers Act (WSRA) directs federal agencies to identify potential additions to the National WSR System (NWSRS) when undertaking federal agency plans like river management plans. Federal agencies such as the National Park Service (NPS) consider the potential for rivers to be designated by evaluating a river's eligibility, tentative classification, and suitability for designation under the WSRA.

Canyonlands National Park is experiencing emerging visitor uses and increasing demand for commercial services and private recreation along the river. These changing uses and rising demand for outdoor recreation experiences is resulting in cultural and natural resource impacts and a diminished visitor experience. Climate induced drought and its implications for visitor use and resource management are also of primary concern at Canyonlands.

The park has made initial determinations of eligible river segments and their management zones, the desired conditions for the river, and key issues within these areas.

Contact Information

Lena Pace, Superintendent, 303-969-2121
Amy Tendick, Park Planner, 435-719-2103