In five decades Wilderness Workshop has earned a national reputation for passionate advocacy, grassroots effectiveness and scientific authority.

“The wilderness that has come to us out of the eternity of the past, we have the boldness
to project into the eternity of the future.”

Howard Zahniser


  • Aspen Wilderness Workshop Founded

  • Maroon Valley Bus Service

    Lobbied for the service to limit private vehicles in the valley, and provided the first interpretive guides on buses

  • Hunter Creek Diversion

    Gathered 2,700 signatures to stop road-building for tunnel project, preserving wilderness eligibility

  • Hunter-Fryingpan Wilderness

    A 10-year campaign culminated in the permanent protection of this 82,000-acre area

  • Maroon Bells-Snowmass, Collegiate Peaks & Raggeds

    Led the local campaign to more than double the size of the Maroon Bells-Snowmass and to establish two new wildernesses – over 330,000 acres in all

  • Wilderness Monitoring

    Partnered with Aspen Ranger District to launch trail and campsite monitoring program; later added air, water and invasive-weed protocols

  • Spruce Creek Addition

    Dogged advocacy finally secured protection for this 8,000-acre jewel that was left out of the original Hunter-Fryingpan Wilderness

  • Snowmass Creek Instream Flow

    Won a pivotal Colorado Supreme Court ruling establishing a compromise that balances ecosystem needs and human demand

  • Red Table, Assignation Ridge Recommended Wilderness

    Our extensive inventories for the WRNF plan revision teed up 82,000 acres for future wilderness designation

  • Hidden Gems Campaign

    Proposed wilderness designation for dozens of areas

  • Thompson Divide Coalition

    Citizens’ group created to achieve permanent protection of this 220,000-acre area from new leasing and drilling

  • Oil Shale Lawsuit

    Helped force a legal settlement with Dept. of Interior to revisit oil shale approvals; Colorado acreage subsequently reduced from 350,000 acres to 35,000 acres

  • WRNF Travel Plan

    Capping a 15-year effort, obtained a more wildlife- and watershed-friendly plan governing all roads and trails on the Forest

  • Victory for the Roan Plateau

    Judge invalidates Bush era management plan that opened the entire Plateau to leasing based on a legal challenge filed by WW and partner groups

  • BLM Admits Leases Are Illegal

    BLM reconsiders decision to sell 65 oil and gas leases on the White River National Forest based on years of legal advocacy by WW and partners

  • White River National Forest Protected

    After decade-long WW campaign, the Forest Service closed most of the White River National Forest to future oil and gas leasing, including in much of the Thompson Divide

  • Victory in the Thompson Divide

    The BLM cancelled 25 illegal oil and gas leases in the Thompson Divide

  • Capital Watch Unveiled

    Alert system informs citizens and provides specific actions about legislation, executive action, or judicial cases that threaten public lands

  • Protected from Dams

    After two years of advocacy and work we signed an agreement that would result in the City of Aspen moving and downsizing its current water rights to build dams on Castle and Maroon Creeks. This win-win agreement guarantees that no dams will be built in these iconic valleys!

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We are the premiere organization promoting conservation values on the White River National Forest and surrounding public lands.  Join us today!