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Discussion Starter #1
Had the police called on me today for moving (by hand) existing boulders to create some small waves and eddies in the straight flushing river behind my place for some high water fun when I cant get away!

Help?
Does anyone know the regulations for this?

I was told you can move up to 30 cubic yards of rock to make stream improvements and erosion control!?

If anyone knows off hand the regs please inform me as I would love to fight this one for my enjoyment of the river and a throw in these peoples face.......... and if I'm way off base to be put in my place! Thanks![/b]
 

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Not sure about the 30 cubic yard thing... Were you on private property? I'm not fully clear on this, but if someone owns both banks of the river, and you are touching the bottom, you are trasspassing. Otherwise, I think property owners bordering a river own the riverbed half way accross. This is a little fuzzy in the courts. American Whitewater might know more.
 

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I have no clue about the laws but just wanted to say that it's pretty cool that you have a fricking creek in your back yard with enough cfs to create waves! I would seriously help you move those boulders! Sometimes that's as much fun as paddling. Wait a second...you don't live in Montrose do you???
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Lightning.. I own property on one side, a freind owns property on both sides upstream and along side of mine where most of my work is!

Jutsu ... nope not in montrose! it's running only 50 cfs (and is runnable) right now but once it hits 90 plus the waves really come in. The whole run is only a mile but fun on a hot day when I dont have time to run a few miles down stream or have a partner to run something bigger!
 

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first do you live in an incorporated town? if so, contact city hall and see if there're regulations regarding work in a floodplain. second, inquire as to whether you're in a floodplain, assuming you own the streambed in which you were doing these improvements. do you own the stream? third, if you're in a floodplain, you're really not supposed to do anything if it's in a floodplain or floodway, according to fema, but i don't know if there are limitations where fema kicks in or not (amount of earthwork you are doing). my guess is that they won't give a shit about a few boulders, as long as you're not backing water up onto someone else's property. and that raises the next issue: you can't raise the water surface elevation onto someone else's property. your best bet is to talk to city hall or the county gov't where you live.

good luck
chris
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thanks Chris... more info: the banks opposite of my property are about 3 to 4' higher than the water surface! on my property the banks are the same! water level only backs up a few inches with my improvements now and dont reallly think it will rise any higher than last year which was only a foot from my gauge rock! property rights of the river are most likely the towns!
 

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Haha, looks better than the library hole at Golden...

The real question is what's the scale? Cause if those are truly boulders in the water, then the hole looks like it could be nice. But then again, if those are just rocks in the water, then maybe you could dig out some depth in the pool below the "hole". Still I bet you had fun designing it. Are there any trout in there?

I think Gary L. should offer you a job.

Edit: I realize my wording sounds a bit offensive upon closer inspection. I wasn't trying to take any jabs at GaryL. who I very much admire for his amazing work around the state. I was more trying to pump up Brett for his project. And I think the new library will be a vast improvement once the water comes up. Thanks.
 

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State statute:
33-5-102. Projects affecting streams - submission of plans.

Statute text

No agency of the state, referred to in this article as an "applicant", shall obstruct, damage, diminish, destroy, change, modify, or vary the natural existing shape and form of any stream or its banks or tributaries by any type of construction without first notifying the commission of such planned construction. Such notice shall be on forms furnished by the commission and shall be submitted not less than ninety days prior to the date of the commencement of planned construction. The notice shall include detailed plans and specifications of so much of the project as may or will affect, as set forth in this section, any stream.
 

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Its a tough issue. You need a permit, likely a 404, to legally do any work within a stream. Technically, it is likely against the law to create a feature as you did.

As far as the FEMA floodplain issue... if there is a regulatory floodplain along this stream corridor, there are a lot of hoops when improvements are done because you need to make sure you don't raise the water surface at any point along the stream during a 100-yr flood, and then you can submit a no-rise permit, which is just kept on file and not reviewed by FEMA. If modeling (done by an professional engineer) shows that the water surface is increased due to improvments, the exact changes in the floodplain and their effects must be sent to FEMA for approval, and you'd need a reason for rasing the water surface.

Its ugly. Your best hope is that the po-pos just forget about it.

steve
 

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That's pathetic! You would think that the Fuzz would have better things to do with their time and tax-payer money.

Perhaps they should investigate those devious meth labs. . . or find lost cats.
 

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looks like it could be sweet but...

The laws are probably different out here in CA than in CO but we had an incident last year where some boaters moved around some rocks in Troublemaker on the S.F. American and it created quite a stink. The hole might have gotten stickier who knows, they moved it by hand and with a pry bar supposedly. I don't think they jacked up the spot and your creation looks pretty good but I certainly wouldn't want to just let anyone do whatever the f#@$ they wanted to to the river. You've got liability issues to think about too. Doubt it will be a problem either but something to consider. Just to be the devil's advocate...what if someone moved 30 yards of rock by hand into one of your favorite rapids that their property backed up to? I guess my take is you gotta be careful what precedent you establish.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
youd think! especially for the quantity of Meth labs in clear creek county!
I understand they are just responding to a call from some other pathetic loser looking out their kitchen window!

I think they need to get in some plastic and paddle a bit and free themselves!
 

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the information provided above is all generally true. i only offer some additional points.

given that you are in g-town, it can be assumed that the stream in question does have a floodplain identified, especially given the proximity of houses to the stream based on the picture. i suspect the reason the po-po were called is because of the sensitivity about flooding in your town. sand bagging to save houses and the town as a whole freaks folks out, so probably someone saw you moving boulders around and went ballistic.

to legally do what you did, the following would generally be required:
1. a 404 permit: this is a permit from the army corps of engineers for wetlands disturbance. in any "waters of the US" (rule of thumb = any named stream or trib on a quad map depicted by a blue line), activities in the stream bed are subject to this permit to prove you are not destroying wetlands.
2. a FEMA permit called "Letter of Map Revision" or LOMR: this clearly shows (through calcs and modeling by an engineer) what the impacts of the activity are to the flood plain, and that no property(ies) are adversely impacted. in general, you can not raise the water surface of a mapped floodplain by more than 1.0 foot under ANY circumstances, unless you are a government agency which in turn gets you a little leeway on this rule.
3. local permit: probably administered by g-town, called a "floodplain development permit" or something similar. likely difficult given the po-po scrutiny to date.

i would further suggest caution here. if any flooding occurs this spring, and any of your neighbors upstream or downstream have damage of any kind to their property, they could have a case against you for causing/contributing to their loss by illegally modifying the stream. while it seems silly for something this small, that is the general interpretation of the law. i am not a lawyer, take with a grain of salt, but beware.
 

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DEFINATELY ILLEGAL

ALL STREAM IMPROVEMENTS ARE REGULATED BY THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT THROUGH THE CLEAN WATER ACT. THE ARMY CORPS OF ENGINEERS HAS JURISDICTION, NOT STATE OR LOCAL ALTHOUGH THEY CAN MAKE COMMENTS.

DEFINATELY ILLEGAL

DONT FIGHT THEM

WORK AT NIGHT

SURF ALL DAY
 

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Agreed...fire it up at night, black ops style. Ski mask. Night vision goggles. Wait until late so you're nosy neibors are asleep. What they don't know won't hurt em.

This harkens me back to the wise words of Public Enemy..or was is NWA:

"God Bless the Police"

That was it...right?
 

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based on the size of those rocks, if the water ever got high enough to produce a significant flood then I am fairly positive it would wash that sucker right out.

I looked at the floodzones outside of Georgetown and they appear to be mostly contained within the banks ("streamlined").
 

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I got it. Tell the neighbors you're aerating the creek for the rare greenback cutthroat trout population. How can anyone not support that? In actuality if there are trout in there, which looks very possible, you are doing the citizens of GTown a huge service.
 

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nice wave, but what if you added more?!!

Its tough to imagine that a guy moves a few rocks around in a ditch and gets a call from the Police... imagine the kind of trouble that could come from taking a big dump in the river there.
(A real big poop could potentially displace a ton of water and could cause flooding in Georgetown you know.)

Speaking of poop, remember the 100,000 gallons of partially treated sewage spilled into Clear Creek at Georgetown 09-28-2005 when the power outage occurred at the Georgetown Wastewater Treatment Plant....

I dont think the cops were called on that one and certainly no fines were levied.

IF there were any teeth to the Water Quality Laws, and IF public health really mattered, then dumping SEWAGE into Colorado creeks would be slightly more important that Joe Rock piling up a few stones in clear creek.
 
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