Tuesday, May 9, U.S. Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke wrapped up day three of a four-day listening tour regarding Bears Ears National Monument and Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, both of which are under review under President Trump’s Executive Order 13792, issued April 26, 2017.

The day kicked-off with a morning listening session and hike with the Nature Conservancy and the Redd family at the historic Dugout Ranch, the largest private landowners inside Bears Ears National Monument. After making slight schedule adjustments due to weather, the Secretary joined local ranchers for a three-hour afternoon horseback ride through rain, snow, sleet and hail.

“I’m an optimist,” Zinke said. “After being on the ground for a few days and talking to people on all sides I think everyone has a lot more in common than previously thought. Everyone wants to preserve the important areas, the question is what vehicle of land management. I’ve got another day on the ground to listen and learn but we encourage, especially those directly impacted, to submit their recommendations on regulations.gov starting on Friday.”

Wednesday the Secretary met with Garfield and Kane County officials and took driving and aerial tours of the Grand Staircase-Escalate National Monument.

He met with the press at the Kanab Airport at 6 p.m.

Photos of the entire tour are available on the Department’s Flickr page.

Friday opens the formal public comment period for the review of the monuments. A public comment period is not required for monument designations under the Antiquities Act; however, Secretary Zinke and President Trump both strongly believe that local input is a critical component of federal land management.

Comments may be submitted online after May 12 at http://www.regulations.gov by entering “DOI-2017-0002” in the Search bar and clicking “Search,” or by mail to Monument Review, MS-1530, U.S. Department of the Interior, 1849 C Street NW, Washington, DC 20240.

Written comments relating to Bears Ears National Monument must be submitted within 15 days of publication of that notice. Written comments relating to all other designations must be submitted within 60 days of that date.