Colorado BHA Southwest Regional Director (& BHA Life Member), Dan Parkinson, was born and raised in Denver and some of his fondest early memories are of family camping and fishing trips in the mountains of Colorado and the West. “Mom and Dad planted the seed of appreciation for wild places and wild things in me and it is a gift that I hope to share with others,” Dan says.
Dan really didn’t start hunting seriously until a college buddy got him hooked on archery elk hunting which has been his passion for more than thirty years. For Dan, “Traditional bow hunting for elk is the perfect combination of wild backcountry challenge, adventure and an opportunity to put delicious, healthy food on the table”. In addition, Dan feels that quiet, strenuous outdoor adventures like hunting and fishing “provide an opportunity for some necessary personal introspection – to take stock, be thankful and spend some time in the “wilderness within”. Dan’s angling preferences have changed from bait fishing for “anything that you could eat” as a kid to mostly small stream fly fishing for wild trout.
Dan worked for years as a small-animal house-call veterinarian serving a large area of southwest Colorado. Later, as owner and managing veterinarian of Riverview Animal Hospital in Durango, Dan developed a special interest in pain management. He lectured around the country, assisting veterinarians in efforts to improve patient comfort and safety. Mostly retired now, Dan still does some consulting work in veterinary medicine and related fields.
Dan and his wife Laurie moved to Durango in 1982, where they raised two children, Tommy and Erin, and built a family cabin on the nearby Pine River. Today Dan and Laurie live on the Pine River near Vallecito where Dan hunts elk, deer, turkey and occasionally grouse, ducks and geese and big trout (with a fly rod!).
Dan is a proud life member of BHA because he is “highly aligned with BHA’s traditional values of quiet use, muscle-powered access, and ethical, fair-chase sportsmanship”. Dan believes in and participates in BHA’s efforts in education, advocacy, cooperation, and hard work to promote conservation of public-lands fish and wildlife habitat, science-based stewardship of fish and wildlife, and fair and equitable access for all.