Canyon has a mysterious herd |

Canyon has a mysterious herd

Bobby Magill
Post Independent/Kara K. Pearson

GLENWOOD SPRINGS – Glenwood Canyon is known for its great rapids, the trail to Hanging Lake, the artful design of Interstate 70 and a bike path used by millions. But look carefully as you’re speeding down the freeway in the Grizzly Creek area, and you’ll see the canyon’s other attraction: a population of Rocky Mountain bighorn sheep.

The canyon’s sheep became widely known two years ago when a Glenwood Springs man was given fines and jail time for poaching a trophy-sized bighorn ram. About a dozen bighorn sheep can be seen grazing along I-70, said Colorado Division of Wildlife spokesman Randy Hampton. The agency doesn’t know how big the herd is. The sheep, he said, come down into the canyon from the plateau above, but it’s unknown how far the sheep range, where they spend the summer or where they lamb, Hampton said.

The herd is isolated to the north side of I-70, he said. The division is conducting a study to learn more about the herd, he said. Some sheep have been given collars or ear tags as part of the study. The ear tags have different color combinations based on when and where they were captured and tagged, he said.

“If someone sees a sheep in the Flat Tops, if they can help our Glenwood office know about that, that helps science, too,” Hampton said. Vail Daily, Vail, Colorado

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