To whom it may concern: Big Thompson - Mountain Buzz
 



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Old 07-17-2007   #1
 
Denver, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2004
Join Date: Apr 2004
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To whom it may concern: Big Thompson

To the kind and gentle water operations folks that control the Big Thompson,

If you would be so kind, would you please release 600 cfs through the big thompson river channel? I would greatly appreciate it, as would 50-60 of my closest kayaking buddies. You would be forever added to my christmas card list. I will also write a letter to your boss supporting a giant promotion and raise for your noble efforts. Perhaps a medal or a statue can be worked into the deal as well. This will work out very nicely for you.

If you need some help with this task, I can open valves, punch numbers in a computer and I would be more than happy to take over water flow operations for you while you take a nice well deserved break. I promise I won't crank it over 1000 cfs for too long. You can trust me. Do you have a cold fridge for beer, or do I need to bring my own cooler?

You can tell security that a guy with kayaks on the car will be coming by shortly to "help out" with things. I'm very handy with water release type operations. Perhaps its a good time for some maintenance of something of the sort. The river is looking dry and low and would like some water I think. The tourists would like it as well, as they seem to get very happy when kayaks float by. They especially like seeing tricks like eskimo rolls.

If you are wondering if this is a good idea or are concerned about my qualifications, have no fear. I am an expert at deciding which rivers need water, and the Big T needs it bad. I also have several highly prestigious qualifications and titles such as: chief dam water liberator, senior water flow analyst, and vice president of flow augmentation. I am also highly skilled at explaining to your managers why my idea is so good and why you should be swiftly rewarded.

Thank you for taking the time to do this.
Sincerely,
Vice-admiral of the council for big thompson flow improvement

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Old 07-17-2007   #2
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
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Perhaps this should be titled "Foley for President, 2008"?
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Old 07-17-2007   #3
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Fort Collins, Colorado
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Join Date: Nov 2004
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As a fellow swift water hydrologist and local chair for "Save the Dry River Beds" project I would agree that the Big T is on our list of dry river beds that needs serious attention. For if nothing is done soon, cracks in the earth’s crust that normally lay dormant at the bottom of well lubricated and thoroughly cooled river beds may become active and produce a full array of negative ecological concerns to northern Colorado. These effects include but are not limited to an influx of deranged wildlife wandering aimlessly through the forests with large multicolored shells attached to their backs or even shoulders, other wildlife will be seen with heads low in a state of utter depression trying to kill themselves by drowning in mass pools of altered liquid at the local watering hole, and lastly the you may even see an evolutionary change taken in by the environment that forces the mammals to change their habits and spend more time at home and work, with their families and friends. This is an absurdity that just cannot stand! We need to save that river bed and the known world as I see it. 600 CFS may not do it, for this is a severe situation and another 200 to 400 CFS on top of that original estimate may be needed. Thanks for you consideration and consider this a call to arms, the environment needs our help! We must do all we can!

P the K
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Old 07-17-2007   #4
 
Loveland, Colorado
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 510
Big T flows

All,
I do understand your request for the Big Thompson to have higher flows this year. Unfortunately, it just did not play out that way.

This year, inflows to Lake Estes from the Big Thompson River have been dropping for the past couple of weeks. We have been sending those inflows on through Olympus Dam and down the canyon. We just didn't see a big peak in run off flows this year like we did a couple years ago. We also do not have any scheduled work on the Colorado-Big Thompson project. When we do have scheduled maintenance, we use the Big T river to run C-BT project water imported from the Colorado River on down to Horsetooth Reservoir. But, again, not this year.

The State of Colorado via the Colorado Water Conservation Board does have a minimum instream flow below Olympus Dam on the Big T. For this time of year, it is at 125 cfs. Our gage is showing about 127 cfs in the river, up there.

In the middle of August, the minimum instream flow changes and drops down to 100 cfs. So, not the news you were hoping for, I know. Hopefully, next year, there will be more east slope run off. And, if we do have some scheduled maintenance on the project next summer, I'll be sure to post that info here so you know.

Best,
Kara
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Old 07-17-2007   #5
 
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Does anyone here know when the last time BigT ran was?

D
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Old 07-17-2007   #6
 
Loveland, Colorado
Join Date: Oct 2003
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Big T flows

You guys will correct me if I'm wrong, but, as I was just reminded, we did have a good sized release last year, or was it the summer before? We had some maintenance work on one of the canals that is part of the Colorado-Big Thompson Project. While work was being done on the canal, we bypassed our power plant system (which includes the canal) and ran the project water straight out of Olympus Dam, down the canyon, recaptured it at the Dille Diversion Dam near the canyon mouth, and sent it on its way to Horsetooth Reservoir.

That year proved a good example of the C-BT's operational flexibility.
--Kara
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Old 07-17-2007   #7
 
Denver, Colorado
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Thanks for the reply Kara. I am amazed that my fancy titles didn't convice the powers that be to turn on the spigot. I'll send in a few more diplomas and maybe you could forward this request on to congress, the mayor, or NATO or something like that.

I guess next year, I'll have to go with my backup plan of shipping an iceberg up from antartica. I was going to go to Utah and just jack a bunch of their snow and bring it over here, but they have cops and governments and jails etc.

I guess I'll just start doing my monsoon rain dance now.
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Old 07-17-2007   #8
 
Denver, Colorado
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decent flow

Last year... 7/11/2006... 560 cfs... Great time!
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Old 07-17-2007   #9
 
e-town, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1998
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shoshone?

Kara;
I heard that they weree thinking about shutting off the flows on the colorado because it will take a year to repair the power plant. I assume they have to keep some minimum flow, but they might not honor the downstream water calls? Any info would be great!
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