Backcountry Zoning

If you are planning on applying to build a Backcountry Structure, please contact our office to arrange a pre-application meeting:
Phone: 719-486-2875
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Backcountry Zoning Description

4.2.12 BC, Backcountry.

The purpose of the Backcountry Zoning District is to retain the relatively undeveloped character of backcountry areas in Lake County while still allowing for very low-impact development, consistent with the type of development that historically occurred in the area.

Backcountry areas can loosely be defined as more remote areas typified by lack of maintained and improved roads, little to no infrastructure, and very limited or sparse development. Characteristics that may be present include sensitive environmental areas (i.e., wetlands, steep slopes, sub-alpine forest, or tundra), remnants of historic mining activity, high ridges and alpine peaks and areas that provide scenic views. It is the intent of these regulations to allow for a variety of uses for property owner enjoyment that also minimize impacts to the natural environment. This zone district encourages the preservation of open lands that are either privately or publicly owned, managed, leased or dedicated, that are used for recreational, ecological purposes (such as wildlife habitat), or open spaces.

Property owners in the Backcountry Zone District must recognize that access to their properties may be restricted, or even impossible, in the winter and that improvements to roads for summer access may be limited. Due to such access limitations, emergency services and vehicle access to properties in the Backcountry Zone District may not be feasible. Persons interested in owning land with ready access to public services and facilities are advised to seek out the more developed/urban areas of the County. The Backcountry Zone District is not intended to promote in any manner, expressed or implied, the discontinuation of historic access or road closure.

While there are a limited number of possible commercial uses allowed by obtaining a Conditional Use Permit in the Backcountry Zone District, it is not the intent of the district to promote any commercial opportunities but rather to accommodate personal use by the property owner. Accordingly, any improvements as permitted are not intended for short term rental. The minimum acreage for establishing the Backcountry Zone District is 160 acres. Existing Industrial Mining (IM) zoned parcels shall not be eligible for inclusion within the Backcountry Zone District.