DWR Permanently Closes Part of Santaquin WMA to Target Shooting

Utah WMR No Shooting Sign
Utah WM is permanently closing parts of Santaquin to target shooting for safety concerns. IMG UTAH WMR

U.S.A. -(AmmoLand.com)- SALT LAKE CITY – The Utah Division of Wildlife Resources announced Nov. 4 that part of the Santaquin Wildlife Management Area (WMA) will be permanently closed to recreational shooting of firearms, due to safety concerns about shooters hitting nearby homes.

The DWR received reports of stray bullets hitting homes in a new subdivision on the south end of Santaquin City in April 2020. The bullets were believed to come from target shooting that was taking place on the nearby Santaquin WMA.

After receiving the report, DWR personnel met with Santaquin City representatives, Utah County officials and law enforcement on May 4 regarding the incident. Warning signs were posted in the gravel pit area in South Santaquin, informing the public of nearby homes and directing target shooters to shoot in a different, safe direction.

However, despite posting the warning signs in parts of the WMA, DWR officials still received reports of stray bullets hitting near homes and other developments in the area. After continued coordination with city and county representatives, the DWR has decided to permanently close part of the WMA to target shooting out of safety concerns for the growing number of homes in the area. The Debris Basin area of Santaquin Canyon and the area north of Powerline Road have both been closed to the recreational shooting of firearms, effective immediately. Individuals who do not comply with the target shooting closure may be cited.

“Due to the growing population across the Wasatch Front, we wanted to take a proactive approach to keeping people safe in the area around our Santaquin WMA,” DWR Regional Supervisor Jason Vernon said. “There are still other WMAs where people can safely target shoot, and we encourage the public to use those areas, as well as established shooting ranges along the Wasatch Front.” 

Public access to Powerline Road will be closed Dec. 1, as usual, during the WMA’s annual winter closure to protect wildlife species.

Here are some important gun safety guidelines that anyone target shooting with a firearm must follow:

  • Treat every firearm like it’s loaded.
  • Always point the gun muzzle in a safe direction.
  • Know your target and what’s beyond it, including if there are roads, houses, animals, etc. (Always make sure you have a backstop!)
  • Keep your finger off the trigger until you are ready to shoot.
  • Don’t shoot near homes or other structures. (Per Utah law, it is illegal to discharge a firearm within 600 feet of a house, dwelling, or any other building.)
  • Don’t leave trash, including shell casings or pieces of the targets, in the area. Pack out what you bring in.

About Utah DWR

The Utah Department of Natural Resources is one of the state’s largest agencies and helps ensure the quality of life of Utah residents by managing and protecting the state’s abundant natural resources. The department includes seven divisions: State Parks and Recreation; Oil, Gas, and Mining; Forestry, Fire and State Lands; Water Resources; Water Rights; Wildlife Resources and the Utah Geological Survey.


Most Voted
Newest Oldest
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

This is happening accross America. Rural public lands are being posted off limits to hunting and shooting. Instead of county government acting on behalf of history and tradition and sportsman they are drewling like babies to get the tax revenue from developers and new homeowners. And the new homeowners are mostly anti gun Marxists who run the homeowners associations and run for political office against the 2nd Amendment. It’s happening everywhere. I live in an area that was dirt roads and sawgrass and rock mines 20 yrs ago, zoned for agricultural and the like. I could roll out of bed… Read more »


I have waited to see how the election goes to decide if I stay and fight or move to Wyoming or South Dakota. The story was if liden wins I move, if President Trump wins I stay. Not sure how it is going to go right now but who is our president makes all the difference in the world. Since the muslims re elected that slut omar and washington re elected inslee and NY re elected AOC, I see the righting on the wall now. We are not going to be able to change all of America but I can… Read more »


It seems that Trump’s mistake was building the wall in the wrong location. It should be between the COW, (California, Oregon, Washington), and the USA. Most of the Mexico problem is illegal and drug traffic to and from the COW. A wall in that location would solve most of our, (United States citizens), problems.


Musicman44mag you will be welcome to South Dakota, I moved here from “Metrocratic” Minneapolis 12 years ago and never regretted the move. South and North Dakota, Wyoming and Montana are the only FREE states left !!


Musicman44map, me I have been shooting 357 for like 45 years, which means you out gun me. See what I wrote above about SD as I was born here, moved to Colo. twice and been back here for the last 49 years. We in South Dakota under Governor Noem may look good to many of you, but don’t believe all the so called news. I believe SD has 2 small areas of land owned by We The People that allow shooting. Yes, 2 areas in our big open state. I have been trying to get Noem and The Right to… Read more »


Problem is the SLC area is expanding rapidly. There will never be any jurisdiction that will tell developers that they can’t build anywhere in Utah. Too much money, which can change hands, involved.


Progress = restrictions and they’re coming to a town near you.


Being 68 and long time gunner and voter I have pet pvees different then many of you, but I can also see most everyones point of view. For years I have been waiting for National CC, freeing up Gun Free Zones in our Political Offices, and more Open Shooting areas. So Please those on the Right give these things to US, and u never should have blocked US from these things. I skimmed the abpve omfp, and if there is a concern of hitting a living area they should move the shooting area to a safe area, and or add… Read more »