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August 15, 2013
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Vail Daily letter: Celebrate our rivers

Eagle County is blessed with two of Colorado’s finest rivers, the Colorado and the Eagle. Saturday, the Eagle River Watershed Council hold its annual RiverFest on the Colorado. This is a big celebration of the rivers and a great opportunity to experience an easy floating section of the Colorado River with friends and family. It will also introduce many to the new river access points recently acquired through Eagle County’s open space program. After the float there will be dinner and a party at the Colorado River Ranch.

American Rivers, a river conservation organization with staff in Colorado, is happy to be a sponsor and participant of RiverFest. We are teaming up with the Eagle River Watershed Council, Eagle County, Eagle Valley Land Trust, local businesses, and other local partners to help promote access, recreation and conservation of the Eagle and upper Colorado Rivers.

The county and its partners have done a remarkable job acquiring and developing access for residents and visitors to both the Eagle and upper Colorado Rivers over the past two years. Floating the river from State Bridge all the way down to Dotsero is now something that can be done in shorter sections with the county’s new access points at Two Bridges, Red Dirt Creek and Colorado River Ranch.

The county and others have also opened up a lot of public access and recreational opportunity for anglers and boaters on the Eagle — from the new Boneyard open space in Minturn to the Duck Pond near Dotsero and the Eagle’s confluence with the Colorado.

Access to the Eagle is more complex. Most of the public access land on the Colorado belongs to Eagle County or the Bureau of Land Management. On the Eagle, we have a wide mix of public access, leased access on private land, community parks, platted easements and open space parcels.

American Rivers looks forward to working with community members to explore how to further improve access to the rivers and also help the community take better advantage of these assets in our backyard.

In Eagle County, we have a lot to celebrate with our two rivers, and we also have a lot to celebrate by having the Eagle River Watershed Council as their river stewards! So sign up and join us for the RiverFest, and help the rivers and the Eagle River Watershed Council while having a heck of a good time to boot! Get tickets and information by calling 970-827-5406 or on-line at www.erwc.org.

Ken Neubecker

Carbondale


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The VailDaily Updated Aug 16, 2013 06:42PM Published Aug 15, 2013 05:57PM Copyright 2013 The VailDaily. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.