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  • Sheriff's Office Behind the Badge Newsletter Topic

    Target Shooting on Public Land


    This month’s Behind the Badge is brought to you as a result of numerous calls and complaints regarding the discharge of firearms. Shooting is generally allowed on public lands except in developed recreation sites or areas.


    Shooting is allowed on public lands as long as the activity:

    • Does not create a public hazard, nuisance, or direct threat to public safety. This includes shooting any weapon from, across, or toward any road or trail, regardless of the road or trail surface, shooting in an unsafe manner, or shooting in an unsafe direction.
    • Does not damage or destroy natural features, native plants, cultural resources, historic structures or government/private property. This includes using any vegetation or structure as a target, backstop, or target holder.
    • Does not facilitate and create a condition of littering and abandoned personal property. The shooting of any glass or material that would break into small pieces and create a hazard or litter is prohibited. All spent shells or brass are considered litter as well.
    • In addition, you must not possess or discharge a firearm in violation of any Colorado State Law. This includes possession of a firearm while under the influence of alcohol or a controlled substance and carrying a concealed weapon in violation of state law.


    Location, Location, Location

    Ranges are ample in the Denver Metro area and listed by the Colorado Parks and Wildlife. View exit disclaimer policy page for links to third-party websites. Jefferson County also offers target shooting in public lands under the aforementioned conditions. 



    • ALWAYS keep the gun pointed in a safe direction
    • ALWAYS keep your finger off the trigger until ready to shoot
    • ALWAYS keep the gun unloaded until ready to use
    • Know your target and what is beyond
    • Know how to use the gun safely
    • Be sure the gun is safe to operate
    • Only use the correct ammunition for your gun
    • Wear eye and ear protection as appropriate
    • Never use alcohol or over-the-counter, prescription or other drugs before or while shooting
    • Store guns so they are not accessible to unauthorized people
    • Always use a proper backstop when target shooting
    • Pick up your cartridges, shells and target when finished
    • Be mindful of your target: shooting glass is considered littering



    << Behind the Badge Archive 

    June 1, 2012

    Last Updated: 11-14-2013