Small towns rely on hunting and fishing 

Hunters rejoice when the air starts to cool and the days become shorter, and so do small-town businesses and outfitters. To many small-town businesses across Colorado, a successful hunting season means money in their pockets and food for their families. 

Dave and Karen Hammer, who own Kremmling Mercantile, Moose Café and Bear Mountain Outfitters in Kremmling, count down the days until hunting season each year. “Not only do we appreciate, but we depend on the hunters and anglers that come through our businesses throughout the season,” Dave Hammer said. “Each year, we’re grateful to see new and returning hunters and anglers that fill up on groceries and other items for their trip. Without their business, there would be a noticeable impact.” 

There is more than meets the eye when it comes to hunting and fishing in the Centennial State. Home to more than 960 species, Colorado boasts one of the most diverse and abundant wildlife populations in North America. 

Many of Colorado’s wildlife management efforts, including habitat conservation, wildlife reintroductions, and threatened and endangered species programs, are supported through revenue generated from the sale of hunting and fishing licenses. Each year, hunting and angling generate over $3.25 billion for the state from small businesses to manufacturers and the tourism industry. Additionally, hunting and angling support more than 25,000 full-time jobs across the state.   

The Colorado Wildlife Council was formed in 1998 by the Colorado Legislature. Twenty-four years later, the goal of the council remains the same: to educate the general public about the benefits of wildlife, wildlife management and wildlife-related opportunities – especially hunting and fishing.  

The council was formed by and remains a diverse group of anglers, hunters, farmers, ranchers, conservationists, outdoor recreationists and community leaders, all working together to ensure a bright future for Colorado’s wildlife. The council currently consists of nine volunteers who represent various groups throughout the state.   

To learn more about and stay up to date with the Colorado Wildlife Council’s work and impact, please visit

– Lani Kitching, Vice Chair, Colorado Wildlife Council