July 10, 2011
The Larimer County Parks Board will meet on Tuesday July 12 at 5:30 pm at the Larimer County Courthouse Office Bldg., Boyd Room, at 200 West Oak, Ft. Collins. At the meeting Charlie Johnson, Senior Land Agent, will update the Board on progress. The Board will receive public comment on The Narrows (Area 5). The Board will take action at this meeting. Walt Graul says his understanding of the proposed actions at the Narrows property would keep angler access along the north shore and also expand it west along the south shore-- in exchange for losing some land along the west edge of the existing property south of the river. This would be a major improvement for anglers! Comments are being taken at this meeting for 2 other areas, with likely deadline as the August 9 meeting. The following was posted by Walt Graul in June. Founder of Friends of The Big Thompson and Co-Chair, CWF Issues Comittee: "First, they will begin the public input process for the east parcel of Area 20 on the North Fork. This has been one of our top two priorities. The parcel looks like private land right now, but has a nice stretch of the North Fork for fishing and has really good riparian habitat values. I also just learned that the Larimer County parcel goes to mid - stream from the south side, and the north half of the stream has just been leased by a private fishing club in conjunction with an adjacent section of the stream below the Larimer County property. Their information sheet points out that the south half is public land. So, we now have a stretch of water owned by Larimer County that now is basically only used by a private fishing club. Luckily, the club only allows catch-and-release and anglers must use barbless hooks to reduce mortality. How do I know? I joined the private club = Rocky Mountain Angling Club - last year and just received the info on the new lease. So, even though I am a member of the club, I believe this is unacceptable for the general angling public interests. Hopefully we can convince the County to retain their parcel at this location so that both the public and the private club can share the resource. The County has a good record in terms of protecting angling interest thus far in this process, so we hope it continues with this next set of parcels. The other parcel is 12b. This is the piece just east of where the North Fork enters the main Big Thompson at Drake - just east of the bridge on the north side of the river. Another good stretch. Particularly in view of the North Fork parcel, I think it will be very important to have several people provide input at this upcoming meeting. If this cannot happen in person, then written input should be provided to: email@example.com. Copies should go to: the two key County Commissioners: firstname.lastname@example.org and email@example.com . It would really be desirable to have verbal input at the meeting from a rep from Loveland Fishing Club and any individual members, as well as someone from Colorado Wildlife Federation and Rocky Mountain Flycasters. Again, if not possible, at least written input via e-mail. I will comment on behalf of FRIENDS OF THE BIG THOMPSON. Any and all written input from FRIENDS members would be helpful . We have focused on the North Fork property and one just west of Loveland as our top two remaining priorities, thus the need for the public push on input. Also, the piece at Drake is really good fishing and I expect we will hear from some of the vocal locals at Drake.