Long Draw Reservoir: USFS to decide future use

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Here’s an update on the Forest Service’s plans for Long Draw Reservoir, from the Longmont Reporter-Herald. From the article:

The U.S. Forest Service expects to decide in April or May whether to allow continued use of Long Draw Reservoir. The reservoir and dam were enlarged in 1974 for [Water Supply and Storage Company] to provide water for irrigated farmland in Larimer and Weld counties. The permit to operate that expired in 1991. A subsequent extension was overturned by a court challenge, so the water company has been using the ditch under a special use permit while the federal environmental assessment process proceeded. That process, which lasted more than four years and solicited public input more than five times, is nearing its end with release of the final environmental impact statement.

The options are:

• Continuing to operate the reservoir and dam as it has been since 1974.

• Changing flows in the La Poudre Pass Creek to mitigate potential environmental damage.

• Maintaining the current operation and water flows but mitigating damage by restoring greenback cutthroat trout in Rocky Mountain National Park and the in the national forest in streams connected to the creek and the reservoir.

• Maintaining current operations and using water from the upper Colorado River basin to restore wetlands within the national park.

The assessment is online at: http://www.fs.fed.us/r2/arnf/projects/ea-projects/clrd/longdraw/index .shtml.

The final decision, which could be any of the four options, is expected in the next two months.

More Coyote Gulch coverage here.

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