Connecting Community and Land
The Rocky Mountain Land Library is a 501c3 nonprofit located in Denver, Colorado.
At present, the Land Library’s physical locations are in the developmental stages and can be accessed through our scheduled programs and events. We do not currently have regular hours, but anticipate expanded opportunities to visit with the Cook’s House restoration occurring in summer of 2021!
The Rocky Mountain Land Library’s mission is to help connect people to nature and the land.
The need for places of quiet thought, creative pursuits, and active community involvement will only grow as our population increases. The residential library we will establish will give everyone access not only to the books, but also to the surrounding lands — a learning landscape for generations to come.
Our 50,000+ book natural history collection has been gathered and curated by co-founders Jeff Lee and Ann Marie Martin throughout their careers at Denver’s iconic Tattered Cover Bookstore. The collection is global in scope and crosses all genres and subjects that explore the relationship between humans and nature.
The Land Library’s ultimate vision is to open Buffalo Peaks Ranch as a year-round, residential retreat center and library, while hosting additional programs and outreach through our Metro Denver locations.
This rural to urban continuum will allow people of all backgrounds to gain a greater awareness of the land while connecting with one another. We describe this combination of locations as our Headwaters to Plains Network.
We are a nonpartisan, non-advocacy based organization dedicated to engaging diverse voices and perspectives, within our collection, programs, and organization.
Our diversity, equity, and inclusion committee develops outreach programs to engage our community and help overcome barriers to accessing our more distant resources and programs.
Buffalo Peaks Ranch:
Since 2013, the Land Library has invested over $100,000 in the initial stabilization and exterior restoration of the three residential structures at Buffalo Peak Ranch, our historic homestead and former sheep and cattle operation located at 9,200 ft just outside Fairplay, Colorado.
Each summer we have hosted a growing schedule of workshops and volunteer days at the ranch, reaching out to new partners and making new friends and connections as we work to bring our full vision to life.
At present, the ranch’s residential structures are in need of final interior restoration before library operations and lodging can begin.
In the spring of 2017, 1,000+ backers from around the world helped to successfully fund our Kickstarter campaign to complete the first major interior restoration at Buffalo Peaks Ranch with the Cook’s House restoration.
- Archived Kickstarter page and project description: Buffalo Peaks Ranch – A Literary Home on the Range
- Denver Post article: Rocky Mountain Land Library hits ambitious Kickstarter goal, sets its sights higher
We are currently working with Park County on updating the ranch’s zoning to allow construction to begin, and anticipate completing restoration of the Cook’s House in the summer of 2021, allowing us to host our first overnight guests and dramatically expand our programs and operations soon thereafter.
How to Visit:
The Rocky Mountain Land Library hosts a full-schedule of workshops and volunteer days throughout each summer season. At present, public access to the Land Library collection and locations is limited to participants in these scheduled programs and volunteer workdays.
While we do not currently have regular open hours, our hope is to increase open-house and volunteer days in 2021 to allow more unstructured visits and to begin circulating books from our collection before our full operations begin.
With the completion of the Cook’s House restoration anticipated in the summer of 2021, we will begin acting as a residential library and hosting overnight guests and day-visitors soon thereafter. The first overnight stays will be experienced by our Kickstarter backers and Founding Members before opening to the public!
How to get Involved:
- Join our email list to receive program schedules, volunteer day invitations, and special event notifications.
- Join our Facebook community for the most up-to-date information, regular book-focused blog updates, and partner happenings.
- Become a Member! (coming soon) Joining the Land Library as a member is the best way to show your ongoing support and to help the Land Library grow our capacity to hire the dedicated staff needed to fully open our locations and share the collection.
Q: Can I donate a special book, or an entire collection, to the Land Library?
A: Unfortunately, our storage capacity is at its limit and we are unable to accept additional materials for the time being. As restoration of the the ranch progresses, and our urban locations take form, we will have greater capacity to receive and steward book donations, hopefully as soon as 2021.
Q: When can I visit the Land Library?
A: We anticipate that our 2021 schedule of summer events will be released by May of 2021. We do not currently have regular open hours, but our hope is to increase open-house and volunteer days in 2021 to allow more unstructured visits to the ranch, the Waterton Canyon collection, and the Globeville Land Library in Denver, until our full operations commence.
Q: Can I camp at the ranch?
A: Throughout the summer season, we typically have a variety of camping opportunities on specific dates or in conjunction with workshops. While we do not currently have ongoing camping availability, we absolutely envision bring-your-own-tent, rent-a-yurt or rent-a-platform-tent camping options as part of our future operations when the Cook’s House opens, and possibly before. Check back in spring of 2021 for updates!
The Land Library is supported by a passionate team of dedicated volunteers and board members.
Jeff Lee, Director
Board of Directors
Richard L. Knight
Susan J. Tweit
George F. Thompson