CPW awards $87,900 grant to Grand County
August 30, 2016
Western slope economics, especially areas like Grand County, are driven by tourism. Tourism, in turn, is dependent upon the unique environment of the high Rockies and the recreational opportunities on offer.
During the long high country winter massive snow dumps draw visitors from throughout the state, nation and world. The summer season offers more varied recreational choices but the preeminence of our local lakes and streams is hard to overstate. One of the biggest draws for recreators in Grand County are our incredible fishing opportunities.
While many who come to Middle Park seek out vast mountain lakes, creek and river anglers are extremely prevalent. Driving down US Highway 40 through Grand County will typically reveal several anglers casting for trout in our mountain streams. For some time now local conservation groups have been working to improve river habitat in the Fraser Valley.
The regional adaptive management committee for water issues, known as Learning By Doing (LBD), has already undertaken a few projects. The LBD group is made up of multiple entities including Trout Unlimited, Grand County government, Northern Water and Denver Water among others.
Earlier this summer Colorado Parks and Wildlife (CPW) awarded Grand County an $87,900 grant. The grant will be applied to projects the LBD group is working to develop. According to a press release from CPW issued in early August the grant is for, "public access and habitat improvement on the Fraser River near Tabernash."
Local officials have been negotiating details surrounding how the grant would be implemented for the past several weeks but lingering issues have been worked out and the project is now moving forward.
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The LBD group has already done several projects in the Fraser Valley including the Fraser Sediment Pond, which removes road traction sand laid down on Berthoud Pass over the winter, and the Fraser Flats River Habitat Project. The Fraser Flats Project seeks to improve the habitat of the Fraser River by digging deep narrow channels in the middle of the existing stream bed to allow the river to recede in low flow periods while still maintaining high water velocity, a crucial dynamic in the health of any river.