Flickr album link: Sand Wash Wild Horse Management Area
The Browns Park National Wildlife Refuge is a popular place for migration season birding and there actually is plenty more to experience in this very remote area. Access points to the north side of the vast Dinosaur National Monument and Green River rafting excursions are located nearby, which are definitely worth checking out. The Flaming Gorge National Recreation Area awaits to the west and this destination is a favorite of boaters and summer vacation campers. There are several wildlife management areas along the river to discover and there is even a very lengthy 4x4 trail that goes from Browns Park all the way to Jenson, Utah. A few miles east of Browns Park is yet another interesting place to explore called the South Sand Wash Special Recreation Management Area, which offers an opportunity to view wild horses in the picturesque high desert terrain. Colorado State Road 318 is the travel route that will take a visitor to all these scenic places, but careful planning must be done ahead of time because fuel management is critical. There are no services anywhere near the Colorado-Utah Border, so keeping an eye on the gas gauge will be necessary when doing the tour.
The first section of the dirt road going into the Sand Wash Recreation Area is fairly smooth and regular passenger cars can handle the bumps. The further one goes into this desert wilderness, the rougher the dirt roads get, so a 4x4 high ground clearance vehicle is best for exploring the back country. If it rains all bets are off, because these silty dirt roads will turn into deep impassible mud when wet. Primitive pack it in-pack it out camping is allowed in these BLM Public Lands and the the small campsite clearings with stone fire rings are fairly easy to spot.
The Sand Wash Wild Horse Management Area is part of the Sand Wash Recreation complex and this wildlife viewing area is close enough to the lush green farms along the river to attract numerous wild horses. The spring season is the perfect time for viewing wild horses, because their behavioral traits are on full display. This time of year is also the foaling season, so do not be surprised to see mares with offspring in tow. On the downside, there is no guarantee that wild horses will be there upon arrival, but this region is also a great place for viewing deer, elk and pronghorn antelope, which all far outnumber the wild horses. For this reason, the Sand Wash Wild Horse Management Area is well worth checking out, so be sure to stock up heavy and bring a powerful lens along for the ride!
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