Portrait photography is allowed this summer at the historic Rock Ledge Ranch site, but only at certain times and with a $ 50 permit, said Andy Morris, the operations administrator for its parks.
Photographers are urged not to schedule shoots at the historic site, 3105 Gateway Road, between 9 a.m. and 5:30 p.m. Wednesday through Saturday and during special events.
Hours will be in place until Aug. 18, but a daily permit will likely be required year-round, Morris said. He plans to reassess the policy in August.
The policy, which came into effect at the end of June, applies to professional and amateur photographers taking formal portraits or doing sessions such as wedding or senior photography.
This does not apply to visitors who take photos while visiting the living history site.
The policy is intended to help preserve the historic integrity of the ranch, Morris said. “Modern trespassers” such as large photographic equipment and people posing in formal wear can detract from the experience. But it is also to control the commercial use of the site, he said.
âWe brought in professional photographers and treated the site like their office,â Morris said.
Admission to the historic site is $ 8 for adults, $ 5 for those 55 and over, and $ 4 for children 6 to 17, its website says. Children 5 and under are free. Reduced rates are available for groups and active or retired members of the military.
Some local photographers are frustrated with the new policy, Gazette partner KKTV reported.
âMy clients are very frustrated because they come here for the views,â Kaley Messelling, owner of Kaley Brooke Photography, told KKTV. âYou can see Pikes Peak, you can get the Garden of the Gods, all the historic houses and the land – it’s great to watch.â
However, Morris said the majority of photographers he had heard of supported the new policy.
The historic site is privately supported by members of the Rock Ledge Ranch Living History Association and is managed by the city’s Parks, Recreation and Culture Department.
The ranch was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1979, the city’s website says. It allows visitors to âexplore the lifestyles and homes of the original inhabitants of the Pikes Peak area,â and includes a working forge and a barn with horses.
“Museum guides wear clothing specific to the period and type of residence,” the city’s website says.
“They explain the activities of daily living of those who lived in the houses.”
For more information on permits, visit the historic website at rockledgeranch.com/attention-professional-photographers.