Protesters are rallying against the BLM, saying its preferred plan for the future of public lands will devastate the local economy and the Western Slope's heritage.
The BLM is right in the middle of coming up with a new resource management plan, a process that it undertakes every couple decades.
That plan covers everything from oil and gas leasing and grazing management, to recreation and travel routes.
It's the potential closure of thousands of miles of roads that has people speaking up and speaking out.
Protester Howard Rosenauer says, "These people live here and it’s important that they know that we are not for it."
Protecting access to Western Colorado's public lands is the goal behind dozens of protesters and signs, hoping to influence the BLM as it plans for coming decades.
The BLM says it needs public comment for its final decision. The protesters say they're providing just that.
Brandon Siegfried, who organized the rally, says, "They’re going to close 70-percent of your motorized routes. You better get in there, identify the routes that are important to you, ask them not to close them. and ask your county commissioner to step up and fight for our access."
The BLM says to consider what residents want out of their public lands comments need to be written.
"It’s really critical to us that public comments be really specific and that they be in writing,” Grand Junction’s BLM field manager, Katie Stevens, said. “That helps us really get the intent of the commenter and it helps us understand the rationale behind why they are making that comment."
Kayce Hoover says she'll be sending her written letter soon.
"I’m a disabled American. I rely on motorized access to my public lands," Hoover said.
She wants keep enjoying the land, a big reason her and others say they choose to live in Western Colorado.
"The thing about motorized access is it really leads to about 80-percent of the recreation of our public lands,” Siegfried said. “This is about camping, this is about hunting, fishing, and hiking"
Hoover says, "These lands are public lands and if they stop our access and restrict our access now, then we wont have any access for our future.”
The BLM says this is the time to tell it what you think. The public comment period on the proposed resource management plan ends on June 24th, 2013.
For more information check out: http://www.blm.gov/co/st/en/fo/gjfo/rmp.html.