One year ago today, University of Colorado’s Jennifer Metcalf’s study was released announcing that Colorado’s state fish, the Greenback Cutthroat, was located in only one four-mile stretch of water in all of Colorado: Bear Creek in the mountains just west of Colorado Springs. So, what’s the status of that area now?
Spawning efforts at state and federal hatcheries this year have been successful, and as a result, there will be fingerling fish available to be stocked into the wild next spring.
Loop Trails and Other Access
Trails 668 and 720 have been re-opened -- but remain closed to motorized vehicles. You can see the map of the areas trails by clicking here. You can see maps for motorized access here. Additional maps for for non-motorized trails can be found here.
Status of Bear Creek
With improved rainfall in July and early August, conditions on Bear Creek are much improved from 2012. Water temperatures and flows have been suitable and have not posed a risk to the fish.
The Rocky Mountain Field Institute (RMFI) completed maintenance on all sediment control structures in the Bear Creek watershed and also obliterated campsites over 3 weeks in April and May. Sediment was placed in 40 pound sandbags. The sandbags will be stored overwinter in the watershed, not removed this summer as previously planned, as the sediment may be used in future trail improvements or decommissioning.
Want to read more about this study?
Here are links to the initial blogs on the Angler’s Covey website:
Various news agencies covered this groundbreaking research, too:
Orvis 101 Introduction to Fly Fishing
Orvis 201 Streamside