South Boulder Creek

Boulder Flycasters, South Boulder Creek Initiatives
Update, February, 2018

Boulder Flycasters Launches South Boulder Creek Flow and Water Quality Initiatives

In October 2017 Boulder Flycasters (BFC), in cooperation with Colorado Trout Unlimited (CTU), launched an effort to address South Boulder Creek (SBC) in-stream, year-round flows and water quality improvements. The likely approval of the Gross Reservoir Expansion project within the next 12 to 18 months means that there will be renewed attention to this watershed. To gain permitting approvals, Denver Water, the owner of Gross Reservoir, committed to a number of watershed improvements and associated environmental monitoring. Additionally, the cities of Boulder and Lafayette, in cooperation with Denver Water, are also committed to improving in-stream, year-round water flows.

BFC’s efforts are being led by Rob McCormack, BFC president, and Stephen Brant, new board member and coordinator for these efforts. Many other BFC members have pitched in to help establish our objective and goals, provide background information, and to advise on technical issues. We also began discussions with Boulder’s and Lafayette’s water utilities, and Boulder Open Space and Mountain Parks, all with water rights, land and other stakes in improvements to SBC. CTU is also providing support and has the main contacts with Denver Water for when the time is right for working groups to meet.

As of this date, our goals and objectives are as follows:

GOAL: Build the needed collaborations, processes and organization to provide continuous improvement of water quality within the SBC watershed.

Objective 1: Develop a working collaboration between key stakeholders (city water utilities, ditch owners, the public) committed to improving year round, in-stream flows and water quality.

Objective 2: Facilitate the operation of an Environmental Pool within Gross Reservoir to provide sustainable, in-stream water flows year-round, as provided for in an Inter-Governmental Agreement (IGA) between Denver Water, Boulder Water and Lafayette Water. This includes a proposal to facilitate the operation of an interim Environmental Pool until the Gross Reservoir expansion is complete.

Objective 3: Help implement and support monitoring along SBC to build a database of key water quality measures. This is the most important near-term objective to get into place. To our knowledge there is no current comprehensive database of SBC water quality measures. Getting this started as soon as possible will help to build a baseline for monitoring and measurement. This database can then be used to make adjustments to water quality processes, measuring flows, and defining improvement and mitigation requirements.

Although still in the early stages of working through the issues and timelines to accomplish these goals, we are excited about the willingness of our working partners to achieve these ends. If you would like further information or to volunteer your help, please contact Rob or Stephen via email.