Input on Dolores Releases! - Mountain Buzz
 



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Old 01-23-2009   #1
Kjirsten
 
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Input on Dolores Releases!

From: Tim Hunter
An introduction: I am a member of the Colorado Dept. of Natural Resources 1177 Roundtable, apointed as the recreational advisor for the San Juan, San Miguel, and Dolores river Basins.
The state is assessing water needs for the future out to the year 2050.
listed below is a notice of public meetings to be held in Pagosa, Durango, Telluride and Cortez the first week of Feb. These meetings are to get public input into the State of Colorado's water needs assessment plan as it relates to non-consumptive needs (boating, fishing, hunting, recreating). It's taken nearly 3 years of hard work to get the state to recognize that there is a lot more to water use than irrigation or municipal and industrial uses. Please pass this info on to as many people as you can, this may be our one chance to have the voice of the recreational users of our rivers and streams heard.
-Tim Hunter
[email protected] net
(970) 749-3665
Monday Feb. 2 6:30 pm. Pagosa Springs Community Center 451 Hot Springs Blvd. Pagosa Springs, CO
Tuesday Feb. 3 6:30 pm Eolus Community Room Durango Community Recreation Center 2700 Main Ave. Durango, CO
Wednesday Feb 4 5:30 pm Community Room Town of Telluride Parks and Recreation 134 S. Spruce St. Telluride, CO
Thursday Feb 5 6:30 pm Dolores Water Conservancy 60 S. Cactus Cortez, CO

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Old 01-23-2009   #2
 
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admins - can we put a sticky on this one?
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Old 01-30-2009   #3
Kjirsten
 
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I know this is a sticky on the Boater's Forum but it doesn't show up on the home page, so I thought I'd bump it.

Go to the meeting in your area! Wouldn't it be great to run the Dolores longer and during the week? No more waiting in line at Snag?
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Old 01-30-2009   #4
 
Upper Florida, Colorado
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Waiting in line

Another way to eliminate the line at snag would be to permit that section. The advantage to the mismanagement of this river was that it was difficult to plan a trip because we never knew if there would be water. So sometimes management on Thursday would decide to let out 2,000+ on Friday and only a handful of boaters showed. Other times people showed up only to have the water turned off at the put-in. In a way I'd hate to see regular flows if that meant permits. Even before the Dam the Dolores would be crowded on weekends, I hope there's an answer that doesn't involve permits or lotteries.
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Old 01-30-2009   #5
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TakemetotheRiver View Post
I know this is a sticky on the Boater's Forum but it doesn't show up on the home page, so I thought I'd bump it.

Go to the meeting in your area! Wouldn't it be great to run the Dolores longer and during the week? No more waiting in line at Snag?
One day a few years ago, I pulled into snag for a scout at 4500 cfs.
What pissed me off was there was a friggin commercial group there with LUNCH set up!! Run the rapid, THEN eat lunch.

Anyway, my thought on the Dolores, let er' rip!
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Old 01-30-2009   #6
Kjirsten
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dump truck View Post
Another way to eliminate the line at snag would be to permit that section. The advantage to the mismanagement of this river was that it was difficult to plan a trip because we never knew if there would be water. So sometimes management on Thursday would decide to let out 2,000+ on Friday and only a handful of boaters showed. Other times people showed up only to have the water turned off at the put-in. In a way I'd hate to see regular flows if that meant permits. Even before the Dam the Dolores would be crowded on weekends, I hope there's an answer that doesn't involve permits or lotteries.
This is the kind of thing that needs to be said at the meeting.
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Old 02-03-2009   #7
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Meetings this week in the SW...

All, I think it is important that folks understand the purpose of the meetings in the SW basin this week, and I encourage everyone to attend if possible.
Each Basin Roundtable is charged with developing a basin-wide water needs assessment consisting of four parts:
  1. An assessment of consumptive water needs (municipal, industrial, and agricultural);
  2. An assessment of non-consumptive water needs (environmental and recreational);
  3. An assessment of available water supplies (surface and groundwater) and an analysis of any unappropriated waters; and
  4. Proposed projects or methods to meet any identified water needs and achieve water supply sustainability over time.
This process is intended to accomplish one major thing: Find new sources of water for Colorado's growing population!

Think of it this way, if your backyard river yields 1000 acre-feet of water every year, and 84% of that goes to irrigation, 6% goes to Municipal needs, and nobody knows how much is needed for the environment or recreation - where is the state going to try and take more water? Recreation and Environment! If the state doesn't know how much is "needed" to support existing use, they will look to carve that remaining 10% off the annual yield and store it, pipe it, and use it to meet consumptive needs.

The goals of this process with the Basin Roundtables and non-consumptive Needs assessments are to:
  • Identify priority areas and reaches for environmental and recreational attributes based on existing data
  • Identify the quantities of seasonal flows necessary to maintain priority areas and reaches, to the extent possible with existing data, based on agreed-upon methodologies
  • Outreach to interested parties about the existence of the products of this effort so that parties can use the information developed in other water planning efforts
My suggestion, to those who are able to attend meetings this week, is to
1) look carefully at the list of recreational attributes and make sure that the state has used the best available information in their identification.
2) Make sure that your favorite whitewater runs are listed and prioritized for quantification.
3) if the roundtable still needs help deciding whether to quantify the needs of recreational attributes, lean on them to do so, and offer input!


One more thought, If you are interested in affecting releases out of McPhee Reservoir, you may want to participate in the River Management Plan revision process. For more info contact American Whitewater or check out the Dolores Work Group project.

The NCNA will not greatly impact the management of the river, it will only provide the state with information about how we use water in Colorado. Each basin (there are nine in Colorado) will be presenting their Water Needs Assessments in the next year. Paddlers and Anglers can help protect instream flows by letting each basin know where they recreate, how much water they need to recreate, and why it should be a priority of the state to protect recreational rivers!

There is more information on the AW website if you want to bone-up before the evening meetings. Or call/e-mail me with questions an comments.

Nathan Fey
Colorado Stewardship Director
American Whitewater
[email protected]

American Whitewater is the primary advocate for the preservation and protection of whitewater rivers throughout the United States and connects the interests of human-powered recreational river users with ecological and science-based data to achieve goals within our mission.
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Old 02-03-2009   #8
 
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Hey Buzzards- The Meeting is on Thursday!! Same time and Place.
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Old 02-04-2009   #9
 
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Nathan- these are not basin round table meetings, they are public meetings held by the Nonconsumptive Needs Assessment committee. Although what you say above is generally the discussion of the Basin Roundtables, I think these meetings will much much more focused on nonconsumptive uses and are more geared toward public information. Nonconsumptive Needs Assessment Public Meeting (Durango, CO) | The Water Information Program
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Old 02-04-2009   #10
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Ryan,
The Non-Consumptive Needs Assessment is part of the Roundtable process, as mandated by the Colorado Water for the 21st Century Act.
While the NCNA committee is gathering public info at this weeks meetings, the Roundtable and the State will be using this info in their future decisions regarding where to find available supplies of new water.
State of Colorado - Interbasin Compact Committee
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