What is Table Mountains Conservation Fund, Inc.?
Conservation Fund (TMCF) is a 501 (C) (3) not
for profit Colorado corporation formed as a
citizens group in 1998 for the purpose of
purchase, preservation and stewardship of North
and South Table Mountains as open space lands.
TMCF is able to receive tax exempt contributions
from individuals and corporations and can apply
to foundations for grants.
What is the governing structure of Table
Mountains Conservation Fund?
A citizen’s board of nine
directors working under the organization’s
bylaws governs TMCF. The bylaws allow up to 15
board members. Election to the board is at the
annual meeting in January. The officers of the
board are the President, Vice President,
Secretary, and Treasurer. There are no other
voting membership categories. The board of
directors has an Advisory Board of
prominent citizens. TMCF does maintain a list of
contributors, as well as a list of persons who
have offered their time and skills for special
projects. TMCF does maintain Directors and
Officers insurance for the protection of the
When does the TMCF board meet?
The board meets monthly on
the third Monday at 7:00 p.m. Send an e-mail on the
website form for location of the meeting.
How can I find the names of the officers or
How can a person be on the board?
Any person who is
interested in open space and particularly the
preservation of the Table Mountains can approach
a board member or write a letter of interest to
the board of directors. The board members will
do an informal interview and propose the name to
Can Table Mountains Conservation Fund take
political action to accomplish the goals?
As a 501 (c) (3)
organization, TMCF can educate, inform, and can
give general support for open space issues and
particularly those that impact the Table
Mountains. TMCF can neither give political
contributions or lobby for specific legislative
bills nor give support to specific candidates
for political office.
How does TMCF get funds?
TMCF seeks contributions
from individuals and local businesses and
organizations by mailing appeal letters and
through conversations with people at information
booths at local community events. Our funds are
all voluntary contributions from individuals and
What is the relationship between TMCF and Save
Save The Mesas was
originally an informal citizens’ group
organized to fight the Nike Corporation’s
proposal to build a 5,000 employee office and
plant complex on South Table Mountain in 1998.
Subsequently, Save The Mesas organized as a 501
(C) (4) not for profit Colorado corporation that
can take political actions to preserve the Table
Mountains. Contributions to Save The Mesas are
not tax-deductible, and this organization cannot
apply for foundation grants. Table Mountains
Conservation Fund grew as an outshoot of Save
The Mesas in order to apply for foundation
grants and receive tax-deductible contributions
in the on-going effort to acquire and preserve
the North and South Table Mountains. Each
organization has a separate board of directors.
Where are North and South Table Mountains?
The Table Mountains are
located in the western foothills of the Denver
Metropolitan area, and bounded by the City of
Golden and the western communities of Pleasant
View, Fairmont, and Applewood.
They are located in Jefferson County. The
Table Mountains are visible landmarks from
Cities of Lakewood, Arvada, Wheat Ridge,
Edgewater, and Denver. They can be seen from
aircraft landing at Denver International Airport
and Jefferson County Airport. North and South
Table Mountains are divided by Clear Creek which
flows from Loveland Basin to the confluence of
the Platte River. Click
here for maps.
What makes the Table Mountains so important to
In the 1850’s, settlers
from the Midwest called North and South Table
Mountains the “Shining Mountains” noting
their changing colors under the sun and clouds.
They rise 700 feet over the City of Golden.
Native Americans used the mountains to hunt
small game and used the Table Mountains for
temporary campsites. Sixty-three million years
ago, four layers of volcanic (basalt) flows
formed North Table Mountain (NTM) and three
flows formed South Table Mountain (STM). As
volcanic structures, they are unique in the
Front Range. NTM is nationally recognized for
zeolite specimens. In 1943, the discovery of the
K-T boundary, the geologic boundary that divides
the time of the dinosaurs during the Cretaceous
period and the rise of mammals in theTertiary period, was first discovered on South Table
Mountain. A jawbone of a small mammal that
survived after the dinosaurs were killed off was
discovered in a paleontology dig in 2000 on STM.
The Table Mountains support diverse habitat with
over 335 plant species and are a wildlife corridor
for more than 50 types of local and migratory
birds and numerous mammals. In recent years,
National Renewable Energy Laboratory, located on
a portion of STM, has been operating one of two
ambient sunlight measurement stations in the
world as they measure global warming. The Table
Mountains have unique historic, geological,
scientific, and cultural importance. They
continue to serve as urban buffers, and as
acquisition continues, the Table Mountains will
be vital as open space land.
Is all the Table Mountain Land public Open
No. There are still 400
acres on North Table Mountain that are held in
private ownership. Ongoing
conversations occur between Jefferson County
Department of Open Space and the owners.
Are there public trails to the tops of the Table
Both North and South Table
Mountains have extensive networks of official and
social trails on the slopes and summits of the
mesas. Please visit
Jefferson County Department of Open Space
City of Golden Parks and Recreation Department
“City Trails” for location of trailheads and
Before heading out, please review
trail etiquette on the Jefferson County
Department of Open Space. We all have an
obligation to show courtesy to other trail
users and be good stewards of the table
mountains. There are on-going trail expansions
and improvement projects so it would be good to
visit the above sites before striking out.
What can be done to get all of the Table
Mountains land as open space?
TMCF works with landowners,
City of Golden, and Jefferson County Open Space
Department to facilitate the land transactions.
This is a long-term effort requiring extensive
ongoing conversations with all parties, patience,
Are the Table Mountains threatened with
Mountain is not threatened with development as
all the land that can be acquired for open space
has been purchased. There is a Management Plan
that can be accessed at
Jefferson County Department of Open Space.
South Table Mountain stays under
continued threat of development of about 400
acres based on statements made by the private
landowners. A Jefferson County Open Space plan
is evolving (2008-2009) and updated information
How can I help in preserving the Table
Get active in TMCF. We have
periodic projects and events. Your time and help
on these projects, whether trail building,
handling publicity, working an information
booth, or sending out mailing, etc., are all
important ways of keeping the public aware of
the importance of the Table Mountains.
here to go to the Volunteer Activities page. You can
also make a financial
donation to TMCF or
suggestions to TMCF
How are TMCF the funds used?
Land acquisition funds come
primarily from Jefferson County Open Space funds
and City of Golden’s
Open Space funds. TMCF uses its funds to
educate the public and has offered to pay for
land appraisals and contributed to land purchase.
If all the Table Mountains land becomes open
space, what would be TMCF’s future role?
Hopefully in a few years
the goal of having the Table Mountains as open
space will be accomplished. When that does
happen, the role of TMCF will continue to be one
of land stewardship. Future efforts will build
on current projects, such as providing public
interpretative trails; developing materials in
print, visual, and electronic formats about the
historical, scientific, and cultural features of
the table mountains; and supporting public
educational trail hikes, information seminars,
and other events that focus on these important
What does the distinctive TMCF logo represent?
The logo was designed by a
volunteer to be a stylized version of the two
Table Mountains divided by Clear Creek. Embedded
in the image is a depiction of a bird that is
flying over the Table Mountains.