Post-Fire Responses

Following wildfires in recent years, Northern Water has taken several steps to help protect the Colorado-Big Thompson Project watersheds, working with other agencies on several projects. Following are the recent wildfires and examples of Northern Water’s post-fire responses.

Recent Large Northern Colorado Wildfires:

  • Big Meadows: June 2013, 617 acres, three lakes watershed
  • Galena: March 2013, 1,348 acres, Horsetooth watershed
  • Fern Lake: Oct. 2012-June 2013, 3,498 acres, Lake Estes watershed
  • High Park: June 2012, 87,284 acres, Poudre River, Horsetooth and middle Big Thompson River watersheds
  • Hewlett Gulch: Spring 2012, 7,685 acres, Poudre River watershed
Northern Water’s Post-Fire Responses:
  • Funding seeding and mulching to promote vegetative growth and reduce erosion
  • Placing debris booms (wattles) and constructing sediment basins to capture fire debris and sediment material above reservoirs
  • Installing more water quality monitoring equipment to provide real-time data
  • Developing multi-agency baseline sampling to study rainfall and runoff
  • Evaluating options to modify operations to minimize water quality impacts
More Information
For more detailed information on the fires, watersheds, response efforts and maps, see these publications and links:      
Wildfire Location Map
Map shows locations of the recent large Northern Colorado wildfires.
Click map to view it.
Watershed Protection Booms
Map shows watershed protection debris booms (wattles) for the Galena and High Park fires.
Click map to view it.

A sediment basin dam was installed in Soldier Canyon drainage as a post-fire reponse to the High Park fire to capture debris from runoff.

A debris boom (wattle) was installed in the drainage to Horsetooth
Reservoir after the Galena Fire to capture debris from runoff.