Apple Gate

Upper Black Lake, Photo by Richard Stenzel

2017 Calendar

 This calendar is the thirteenth in a series of historic project calendars that Applegate Group has distributed since 2005. Applegate Group believes that water is Colorado’s most valuable resource and it is important that we all know the history of Colorado’s water project developments. The importance of obtaining a water right in Colorado for beneficial purposes has been recognized since the late 1800’s. Applegate Group is pleased to share the 2017 Colorado's Historic Water Projects Calendar with you.

Worster Reservoir aka Eaton Reservoir
Located on the North Fork of the Cache la Poudre River, Worster Reservoir is owned by the Divide Reservoir & Canal Company which is an affiliate of the Larimer & Weld (L&W) Irrigation Company and the Tri-Districts Water Company. The reservoir has a storage capacity of 3,750 acre-feet. L&W Irrigation Company owns 60% of the Divide Reservoir and Canal Company, which includes Worster Reservoir, Wilson Ditch and Deadman Ditch. The Tri-Districts Water Company owns the remaining 40% and provides water to the East Larimer County, Fort Collins-Loveland and the North Weld County Water Districts, which together serve municipal water to approximately 25,000 taps. The Wilson Ditch is a transbasin diversion from the Sand Creek Basin into Sheep Creek, which is a tributary to the North Fork of the Cache la Poudre River. Sand Creek is tributary to the North Platte River which flows into Wyoming. The service area for L&W extends from north of Fort Collins east to near the Town of Galeton. There are approximately 63,500 acres of irrigation under this system.
Taylor Park Reservoir
Taylor Park Dam is located on the Taylor River approximately 20 miles northeast of Almont, Colorado. The dam creates a reservoir with a storage capacity of 106,200 acre-feet. Taylor Park Dam was constructed in 1937 by the Bureau of Reclamation as part of the Uncompahgre Project. In addition to Taylor Park Dam and Reservoir, the project includes the Gunnison Tunnel, seven diversion dams, 128 miles of main canals, 438 miles of laterals, and 216 miles of drains. The system diverts water from the Uncompahgre and Gunnison Rivers to serve over 76,000 acres of project land surrounding the town of Montrose, and extends 34 miles along both sides of the Uncompahgre River to Delta, Colorado.
Prewitt Reservoir
Prewitt Reservoir is located three miles south of Merino, Colorado and was constructed as an irrigation reservoir which provides supplemental water to downstream irrigation ditches. The reservoir was important to former Colorado Water Congress member, Dianne Hoppe who passed away February 27, 2016. Diane grew up in the Sterling area and as a teenager would go horseback riding in the area around the reservoir and went fishing on the lake many times with her father. Diane was a founding member of the Colorado Foundation for Water Education and was the recipient of the 2013 Wayne N. Aspinall Award.
Lake Loveland
Lake Loveland was constructed by a group of English investors called the English Company. The Barnes Ditch, which had been dug 26 years earlier, was acquired by the English Company and a massive upgrade began on it to develop the ditch as the primary feeder for the lake. When full, Lake Loveland fills a basin of 475 acres. The reservoir has an appropriation date of April 28, 1902, and it first filled with the spring runoff of 1895. Among the larger engineering challenges was the work done on the lake's outlet. A brick-lined tunnel was built feeding water from the Lake to the Greeley Canal which is located a mile south of the lake. The brick-lined tunnel remains today, but was updated with a new liner in the early 1990's. The primary purpose of the lake was originally irrigation, but the majority of the lake is now owned by the City of Greeley who uses it as a domestic water source. The recreation rights on the lake belong to the homeowners whose properties surround the lake. Fishing is available from the public shorelines and swimming is available at the swimming beach at North Shore Park.
Union Reservoir
Union Reservoir is a 736 acre body of water which has an appropriation date of October 6, 1902. The Reservoir is located approximately three miles west of I-25 and one mile north of State Highway 119 near Longmont, Colorado. Originally called Calkins Lake, it was a natural lake carved out during the last glacial age. In 1903, the Union Ditch Company began drilling a tunnel to release the water stored in the lake into the St. Vrain River. Water is delivered to Union Reservoir through the Oligarchy Ditch which diverts water from St. Vrain River. The reservoir currently can store up to 12,000 acre-feet of water and has a conditional water right to allow enlargement of the capacity to 32,000 acre-feet. It was originally constructed to supplement irrigation water to farms located under the Highland Ditch Company along the South Platte River south and east of Greeley, Colorado. The City of Longmont owns 85% of the shares in the Union Reservoir. Today, visitors to Union Reservoir can enjoy fishing, swimming, wakeless boating, camping, windsurfing and picnicking.
Warren Lake
Warren Lake was named after Charles Warren who settled on a tract of land in 1873 near where the lake is now located. It is the first reservoir built in northern Colorado and has an appropriation date of April 15, 1875. The Warren Lake Reservoir Company owns and operates the Warren Lake Reservoir and Dam which is located ¼ mile south of the intersection of Horsetooth Road and Lemay Avenue in Fort Collins. Today Warren Lake can store 2,165 acre-feet and is used to irrigate the Collindale Golf Course, parks, ball fields, and provides recreation for the adjacent homeowners and irrigation of the extensive landscape located along the Harmony Road corridor which is located south and east of the lake.
Adobe Creek Reservoir SWA aka Blue Lake
Adobe Creek Reservoir, also known locally as "Blue Lake", has several appropriation dates, the earliest being January 25, 1906. Adobe Creek Reservoir obtains its water from Horse Creek, Adobe Creek, or the Arkansas River. The reservoir is located in both Bent and Kiowa Counties approximately 20 miles north of Las Animas. Camping, boating, sail boating, windsurfing, waterskiing and warm water fishing are allowed in this State Wildlife Area. The reservoir was constructed and is still operated as an irrigation storage lake by the Ft. Lyon Irrigation Company. Adobe Creek Reservoir can experience significant water level fluctuations where the water surface area varies between 2,000 and 5,000 acres.
Neegronda Reservoir
Neegronda is the second largest of four reservoirs that make up what are called the Great Plains Reservoirs. The other reservoirs are Neenoshe, Neesopah, and Neeskah. The reservoirs are located 12 miles south of Eads, Colorado. Neegronda, which is Cheyenne for “Big Water” is a man-modified playa lake. Water is delivered to the reservoir by a combination of the Fort Lyon and Kingbird Canals from the Arkansas River. The four original playa lakes were modified by the Great Plains Water Storage Company which was the predecessor of the Amity Mutual Irrigation Company. With the exception of Neeskah, all the reservoirs are networked together with a system of canals and gates. In addition to providing water for irrigation, Neegronda also provides recreation opportunities such as motorized boating, sail boating and waterskiing. Primitive camping, showers, and a private campground are available. Water levels have declined steadily over the past decade in the Great Plains Reservoirs as water decreed to these reservoirs has been stored in other reservoirs in the Arkansas River basin; however, the lakes have begun to rebound in 2015 and 2016.
North Michigan Creek Reservoir
Owned by the Colorado Parks and Wildlife, North Michigan Creek Reservoir is decreed for wildfowl production, fish propagation and recreation. The reservoir has an appropriation date of May 3, 1962 and stores 1249.5 acre-feet of water. The Colorado State Park offers 48 camping sites and 6 cabins at the reservoir. There are two boat ramps available at the lake for wakeless boating. The reservoir is located two and a half miles northeast of the Town of Gould, Colorado. All of the water in this basin is tributary to the North Platte River which flows north into Wyoming.
Upper Platte and Beaver Ditch Headgate
The Upper Platte and Beaver Ditch has an original appropriation date of June 20, 1882. Upper Platte and Beaver Ditch has a shared diversion structure with the Deuel and Snyder Ditch. The Upper Platte and Beaver Ditch headgate diverts water from the south bank of the South Plate River at a location ½ mile northwest of Log Lane Village. The irrigation ditch is approximately 28 miles long and ends between the City of Brush and Town of Hillrose, Colorado. The ditch has a hydraulic capacity of 234 cfs and delivers water to approximately 11,500 acres of farmland.
Brighton Ditch
The Brighton Ditch has an original appropriation date of December 1, 1863. The diversion structure and headgate diverts water from the west bank of the South Platte River approximately 1.3 miles southwest of where State Highway 7 crosses the South Platte River near the City of Brighton, Colorado. The irrigation ditch is approximately ten miles long, has a hydraulic capacity of 44.8 cfs, and irrigates 3,200 acres of land located west of the South Platte River. Over the years, portions of this irrigation ditch water have been converted into municipal water supplies for the Denver metro area.
Hoover Dam and Reservoir
Hoover Dam, once known as Boulder Dam, is a concrete arch-gravity dam in the Black Canyon of the Colorado River, on the border between the states of Nevada and Arizona near Boulder City, Nevada. It is a result of the Colorado River Commission, which was formed in 1921 and agreed to the Colorado River Compact in 1922. The dam was constructed between 1931 and 1936 during the Great Depression and was dedicated on September 30, 1935. Hoover Dam impounds Lake Mead, which is the largest reservoir in the United States by volume. Lake Mead provides storage of compact water for California, Arizona, Nevada, and New Mexico and also stores water for the Nation of Mexico. When full it can store 28,537,000 acre-feet of water; however, the active storage capacity is 15,853,000 acre-feet. The past 16 years of drought has resulted in the Lake Mead reservoir level being at an historic low elevation of 1,074 feet on May 16, 2016. The lake is named after Dr. Elwood Mead, a Commissioner of the Bureau of Reclamation and many years before that, was an Assistant State Engineer for Colorado.
Colorado-Big Thompson West Slope Collection System
The photograph shows Windy Gap Reservoir in the lower right, Willow Creek Reservoir is shown in the upper left and Lake Granby is shown in the background. These three reservoirs are part of the West Slope Collection system of the Colorado-Big Thompson (C-BT) system. Water from the Fraser and Colorado Rivers is diverted at the Windy Gap Pumping plant and then pumped six miles northeast to Lake Granby. The Windy Gap Project is not a part of the original C-BT system, but was added as a new supply in the 1980’s. Water from Willow Creek Reservoir is pumped 175 feet up to the Willow Creek Feeder Canal and then delivered to Lake Granby. Lake Granby is the largest storage reservoir in the C-BT system with a capacity of 539,758 acre-feet. Water is pumped from the Farr Pumping Plant at the north end of Lake Granby to Shadow Mountain Reservoir through the Granby Pump Canal. The water delivered to Shadow Mountain Reservoir flows into Grand Lake (both not visible in picture) for subsequent delivery through the Alva B. Adams Tunnel under the continental divide to eastern slope storage and the C-BT delivery system.