Brunot hunting agreement to be discussed

 The Colorado Division of Wildlife and the Southern Ute Indian Tribe have scheduled three open house meetings to explain the Brunot hunting agreement: Oct, 14, 5-7 p.m., at the La Plata County Fairgrounds Extension Office, 2500 Main Ave. in Durango; Oct. 21, 5-7 p.m., Holiday Inn, 1391 Townsend Ave., Montrose; Oct. 29, 5-7 p.m., Hunter Education Building, DOW headquarters, 6060 Broadway, Denver.

 Officials from the DOW and the tribe will explain the Memorandum of Understanding recently signed by the tribe and the state of Colorado regarding hunting by tribal members in the Brunot Agreement area.  In 1874, Congress approved an agreement between the United States and certain Ute Indians in Colorado, known as the “Brunot Agreement.” Under this agreement, the Utes ceded land to the United States but reserved a right to hunt in that area for “so long as the game lasts and the Indians are at peace with the white people.” 

 The Brunot Agreement covers the land in an area which extends approximately, from U.S. 160 on the south to the southern boundaries of Montrose and Gunnison counties on the north, from the middle of Mineral County on the east, and to just west of Cortez on the west.

 The tribe voluntarily stopped exercising its rights in 1972. Tribal members will start hunting in the Brunot area again in 2009.