Originally Posted by glenn
The Ark flow issues aren't a small and easily shrugged off by paddlers. The Ark is easily the best and most reliable paddling for CL III-IV paddlers in the state. Mismanagement heavily influenced by the fishing crowd, TU included killed the paddling season in 2012 and threatens the quality of the paddling every year. Also to my recollection TU aggressively supported landowners on the Taylor to refuse access to floaters in order to what they felt was a private fishery private. I spent 3 years in CO and among other reasons left because what I saw as unsustainable and irresponsible water usage. Happy to see TU and paddlers interests come into alignment around conservation and keeping water in the streambeds.
Mostly I've viewed TU as a powerful ally for paddlers as they have much more pull than paddlers ever will for a variety of reasons.
First, thank you for acknowledging where we are doing good and in alignment...
But...there are a few things here that I will push back on...
1) TU has no more say in how Bureau of Rec operates their flow regimes than anyone else. Do we have a long-time and consistent voice on river issues in the state? Sure, but are we in CONTROL of them? Not by a long shot. Remember that as a conservation organization, more often that not when we are asked to comment on these kinds of operations, it is from the perspective of what is best for the management of the entire aquatic ecosystem - the fishery if you will - not just when would be the best time for FISHING. Flushing flows and trying to mimic a somewhat natural hydrograph in the face of huge trans-basin diversions and dams is a challenge for the ecosystem, regardless of whether or not I can go poke trout at my earliest convenience.
2) With regards to the Taylor, your recollection is flat wrong (sorry). I JUST wrote a post in a different forum that explains that situation from the TU perspective, as I was President of the organization at the time. You can find that explanation here
(I hope that worked correctly...)
I also said in a previous post yesterday (I think in this thread) about all of our activity over the years that has directly benefited the boating community, including supporting numerous whitewater park (RICD) proposals, numerous access points and access issues, the huge Upper Colorado campaign that we drove to keep more water in the river and improve habitat and recreation, and even pushing through a license plate that benefits ALL river users in the state.
You cited appreciation for some of our work - and I appreciate THAT, very much. It has long been my position that all of us river people are in this together and we need to keep working that way. The threats to the rivers is too great to be splintered along these silly lines. Just my $.02
Immediate Past President, Colorado TU