Green Mountain Reservoir opens Friday with reconstructed Heeney Marina
Boating at Green Mountain Reservoir at the northern tip of Summit County opens today with a reconstructed Heeney Marina.
The marina will also be the only motorized boat entry- and exit-point to the reservoir this summer, U.S. Forest Service spokeswoman Kate Jerman said in a press release on Thursday.
In the press release, Jerman said the marina’s reconstruction was undertaken in an effort to control the spread of aquatic nuisance species. The Heeney Marina has been reconstructed to improve drainage, provide additional parking and “most importantly,” facilitate early season and late-season launching.
“Two years ago, (the) presence of invasive quagga mussel larvae, known as veligers, was confirmed in the reservoir,” Jerman said. “Since then, the Forest Service, Colorado Parks and Wildlife, Summit County, and the Bureau of Reclamation have taken proactive steps to continue to monitor and protect Green Mountain Reservoir.”
ANS inspections and decontaminations for Green Mountain Reservoir will also open today, and will be located at the Heeney Marina boat ramp, from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. The Heeney Marina boat ramp will be closed when inspectors are not present. Launching motorized boats from other ramps or the shoreline is prohibited and could result in a fine, Jerman said.
The Heeney Marina inspection station this summer will continue to implement containment protocols put in place last year. Jerman explained in the press release that this means that every boat has to be inspected when exiting the reservoir and will be issued a seal and blue receipt.
“If a boater leaving Green Mountain Reservoir intends to launch in a different water body,” Jerman said, “their boat must be decontaminated before launching.”
Jerman also claimed in the press release that cooperation with the state’s mandatory inspection and decontamination program has “proven successful” to stop the movement of harmful invasive species, such as quagga mussels, into new waters.
“If spread,” Bill Jackson, Dillon district ranger, said in the press release, “invasive mussels infest waters by the billions and can pose a massive financial, recreational and ecological threat to Green Mountain Reservoir and other bodies of water throughout the state. Get a head start by remembering to clean, drain and dry your equipment before and after use.”
A few miles southeast of Heeney Marina, the McDonald Flats Campground boat ramp this summer will only open to hand-launched and hand-powered watercraft. The reservoir will close to motorized watercraft on Sept. 30 at 7 p.m.
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