Annual State of the River meeting | SummitDaily.com

Annual State of the River meeting

Summit State of the River meeting set for May 4

The Blue River Watershed Group and the Colorado River District host the Summit State of the River meeting on Wednesday, May 4 at the Silverthorne Pavilion.

The annual event that takes a closer look at local water administration and the health of the local snowpack and riverflows will include presentations from Denver Water regarding Dillon Reservoir, the Bureau of Reclamation on Green Mountain Reservoir as well as Troy Wineland, the district’s state water commissioner. Joel Gratz of OpenSnow.com will then talk about Summit County’s unique weather during his special keynote address.

OpenSnow has become the go-to source to learn where the snow is falling in the state and across the West. Gratz and his colleagues specialize in figuring out which mountain ranges are most likely to benefit from fickle and inconsistent storm systems.

“Weather forecasting in Summit County is fun because it’s challenging,” he said in a news release. “The various mountain ranges within this one county create localized snowfall patterns, and accumulations can vary greatly over the span of just a few miles.”

The event is free and open to the public. New to this year’s event, it begins with an hour-long open house starting at 5:30 p.m. with several information tables and light refreshments. The manned tables will include details about the Lower Blue River’s recent loss of its Gold Medal trout fishing designation, nuisance aquatic specifics at the Green Mountain Reservoir and the environmental restoration efforts on both Ten Mile Creek and the Swan River.

The main session starts at 6:30 p.m. with the various presentations, and Gratz’s keynote starting at about 7:25 p.m. The event runs until 8 p.m. For more information, contact water commissioner Troy Wineland at (970) 355-4516, or Jim Pokrandt of the Colorado River District at (970) 945-8522.

Palisade hosts Outdoor Heritage Day

The annual celebration of the state’s outdoors, Outdoor Heritage Day, takes place this Saturday, April 30 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. in Palisade, Colorado at Riverbend Park.

Families and their children in search of outdoor adventures are invited to join in this ninth-annual event. More than 40 agencies, businesses and other organizations will be ready to provide information, guidance and support to outdoor enthusiasts.

A variety of exhibits and educational activities will be featured including boating safety, fishing and tying flies, hunting, wildlife watching and management, archery and firearms safety and panning for gold. Colorado Parks and Wildlife (CPW) will stock the park’s pond with plenty of large trout ready to be caught in what is always a popular attraction each year.

Bring your own fishing gear or borrow one of hundreds of fishing rods provided free by Great Outdoors Colorado (GOCO) and CPW. Event organizers also offer a free hotdog lunch for participants from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Dress for variable weather and be sure to pack snacks, sunscreen and water. For more information about outdoor fun in the state, visit http://www.cpw.state.co.us.

Big fines for illegal hunting

Thanks to a tip to Colorado Parks and Wildlife (CPW) from a concerned hunter, a Fruita man is guilty of numerous charges of illegal big game hunting on the Uncompahgre Plateau.

Melvin Weaver, 59, whose last known address was in Fruita living in a camper on the Uncompahgre Plateau west of Delta, pleaded guilty to five counts of various illegal hunting. He was originally charged with 13 violations, and the plea was accepted by the Mesa County court on March 15.

Weaver was ordered by the court to pay almost $15,000 in fines and to forfeit evidence seized by wildlife officers he used while committing the violations. These items included a rifle, a utility vehicle and other hunting equipment. He was also assessed 60 penalty points against his hunting and fishing privileges. Accumulation of 20 points or more can lead to a suspension of someone’s hunting and fishing privileges in Colorado and 44 other states.

The case, which also includes four collaborators who have charges pending, is a reminder from CPW that the consequences for wildlife poaching are severe. In addition, as occurred with this case, CPW asks that anyone with suspicion of illegal activity such as these wildlife crimes, call a local office or the operation game thief at (877) 265-6648. Tips can be made anonymously.

—Compiled by Kevin Fixler


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