Your central Wasatch playground is at risk. 


FUNDING TO DATE


This effort has until June 15th* to galvanize support and close the funding gap. The potential purchase of this property  is now a REALITY. It will be up to Salt Lake, Wasatch and Summit County residents to close the gap between the bond funding and the purchase price, in order to move forward and protect this land in perpetuity. Join us now – don’t let this opportunity pass. 

Bonanza Flats is approximately 1,350 acres of largely flat land with alpine meadows and lakes. Popular Lackawaxen and Bloods lakes are within the boundaries of the proposed acquisition, as is the face of the 10420 Peak. Though the land is privately held, it is an area that Wasatch Front and Wasatch Back residents have used for recreation for years. This land is the gateway to numerous trails including the Wasatch Crest Trail.

There has been no shortage of threats to this land in the past, with plans of golf courses and ski lifts plaguing the refuge and homes of moose, elk, black bear and birds of prey. Today, we have the opportunity to prevent this from ever happening.

Biking at Bonanza Flats

Biking at Bonanza Flats

land for sale

If successful, the purchase of Bonanza Flats would ensure that spruce trees rather than subdivisions will top the 1350-acre mountain pass.  A high-end private developer was pursuing the acquisition of Bonanza Flats from a subsidiary of Wells Fargo Bank, but the landowner has agreed to a contract offer of $38 million from Park City. Development of Bonanza Flats likely would include a private gated community, as well as commercial and residential development, but the agreement with Park City puts these plans on hold. 

Scenic beauty of Bonanza Flats

Scenic beauty of Bonanza Flats

bond passes

On November 8, 2016, Park City residents overwhelmingly voted to tax themselves up to $25 million in hopes that Bonanza Flats could be purchased and preserved as open space.  At the time the bond was passed, Wells Fargo was already in negotiations with a developer, but approached Park City in support of its preservation goals and an agreement was reached.

Wildlife at Bonanza Flats

Wildlife at Bonanza Flats

bridge the gap

The future of the largest Wasatch recreational backcountry is in a precarious state.  Summit County Council is supportive of the non-profit coalition effort, recognizing that this land touches constituents from several jurisdictions. The $13 million gap between the purchase price and the bond amount is significant. Support from other government agencies and the public will be needed to acquire this scenic, wildlife and recreational mecca.

Scenic beauty of Bonanza Flats

Scenic beauty of Bonanza Flats

 You can help

Without your help, the clean water, wildlife habitat, unique scenery and the solace this land provides, will instead be replaced by a sea of rooftops. As of today, there are nine non-profits who are poised to join a campaign to save this land. All donations through this site will go directly to the protection of Bonanza Flats. If we are unsuccessful, you will receive your donation back

 

 This donation is eligible as a tax exempt donation. Upon the successful purchase of this property we will send you an official IRS tax-deductible acknowledgement/receipt of your donation; if we are not successful we will return your donation.

Map of Bonanza Flats

Map of Bonanza Flats

The opportunity to protect Bonanza Flats must be taken with the utmost urgency and seriousness. Decades of frightening development schemes now have an opportunity to be permanently laid to rest, in part because of the foresight of Park City voters who passed a bond last year.
— Carl Fisher, Executive Director of Save Our Canyons
This community has set a standard for recreational opportunity and open space protection. The Mountain Trails Foundation has always seen Bonanza Flats as a key link in a greater vision for quality recreational experiences and are glad to be a part of this effort.
— Charlie Sturgis, Executive Director of Mountain Trails Foundation
The Central Wasatch attracts people from all over because of the world class recreation opportunities and sheer scenic beauty, but we are not growing more open spaces and need to act now to conserve and protect areas like Bonanza Flats for today’s populations and future generations.
— Jen Clancy, Executive Director of Friends of Alta
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Previous potential development plans for Bonanza Flats.

Previous potential development plans for Bonanza Flats.

It is incumbent upon all of us to ensure that the recreational, wildlife and scenic legacy that is Bonanza Flats is protected. Utah Open Lands believes we need to act today for the sake of our economy, our recreational values and the next generation.
— Wendy Fisher, Executive Director of Utah Open Lands
This is an incredibly important and high value piece of land, both for its proximity and it’s terrain, to the backcountry community. Winter Wildlands Alliance and our members are committed to supporting this endeavor in anyway we can.
— Mark Menlove, Winter Wildlands Alliance

Bonanza Flats

Bonanza Flats

 
Bonanza Flats

Bonanza Flats

This week, Park City and a host of recreational, environmental and conservation nonprofits committed to protecting Bonanza Flats—a popular scenic area that connects Big Cottonwood Canyon with Park City—from future development. As an organization rooted in collaboration and partnership, The Nature Conservancy applauds this effort, which will ensure that Wasatch area outdoor enthusiasts will have open space to enjoy for generations to come and that wildlife will continue to have access to this high-altitude habitat of open meadows and alpine lakes. The Conservancy supports this important effort and is inspired by the willingness of the various stakeholders to step up and conserve these lands — enabling nature and people to thrive. We also appreciate the leadership provided by Utah Open Lands and Park City in bringing this opportunity to the forefront and galvanizing the support of the local community and others.”

— Elizabeth Kitchens, The Nature Conservancy
Save Bonanza Flats

Save Bonanza Flats

This opportunity represents a tangible way for diverse people and groups in Utah to come together for something most agree on: protecting some of the last undeveloped open mountain spaces in the Wasatch Mountains for all to freely enjoy. Representing the human powered winter backcountry community, the Bonanza Flats area is important because its location & elevation offer great recreational opportunities, unmatched beauty, and is a critical centerpiece towards blocking unnecessary resort expansion and more development that threatens everyone’s ability to enjoy the places we love.
— Jameson Kent, President Board of Directors of Wasatch Backcountry Alliance
Photo Credit: G. Brad Lewis

Photo Credit: G. Brad Lewis

Photo Credit: G. Brad Lewis

Photo Credit: G. Brad Lewis

The coalition effort - Save Bonanza Flats

Local recreational, environmental and conservation non-profits have formed a coalition for this fundraising campaign. Utah Open Lands, Save Our Canyons, Mountain Trails Foundation, The Nature Conservancy, Summit Land Conservancy, Sierra Club, Wasatch Backcountry Alliance, Friends of Alta and Winter Wildlands Alliance are ready to help save this space.

From backcountry skiing to summer hikes to scenic fall drives, Bonanza Flats is an area of undeveloped and backcountry grandeur nestled in the upper elevations of the Wasatch Mountains. Located along Guardsman Pass Road, Bonanza Flats is a landscape familiar to many, but has always been in private hands. This recreational paradise known for its wildlife, scenic and ecological values, seemed destined for development until Park City’s option agreement was placed in front of the landowner.

Park City will only be able to make the second option payment if there is a significant show of support from the public and other entities that can bridge the gap.
— Andy Beerman, Councilman

CALL TO ACTION

Please inform your local outdoor retailer to support this effort. They can help save the backcountry access, wildlife, forests and trails that this land provides.

 

Background

The competitive offer to purchase the land was made possible through the $25 million bond that Park City residents voted for to save the open space. With hopes that $10 million in funding will come to the table from governmental entities, the remaining $3 million gap must still be filled.

The potential development of Bonanza Flats means that the conservation values of this area are at stake. If Bonanza Flats were to be developed and highly trafficked, access to the entire area would be altered and privatized.

We can’t do this alone.
— Jack Thomas, Park City Mayor

Preserve Bonanza Flats. Back Park City's intention to acquire this open space jewel.

 

*On March 15th, Park City decided to pay the second option agreement to secure the purchase of Bonanza Flats dependent on levels of public support and interest. The closing date is June 15th.