Thursday, October 10
Tour 7. The Past, Present and Future of Western Water
Thursday, October 10
8:30 am - 5:00 pm


  • Eleanor Hasenbeck (Tour Leader) Reporter, Steamboat Pilot & Today
  • Luke Runyon (Tour Leader) KUNC, Community Radio for Northern Colorado
  • James Bishop (Speaker) Public Involvement Specialist, U.S. Bureau of Reclamation
  • Daylan Figgs (Speaker) Director, Larimer County Department of Natural Resources
  • Meegan Flenniken (Speaker) Manager, Land Conservation, Planning & Resource Division, Larimer County Department of Natural Resources
  • Brian Jackson (Speaker) Senior Manager, Western Water, Environmental Defense Fund
  • Kevin Lock (Speaker) Water Resources Project Engineer, Northern Water
  • Kerri Rollins (Speaker) Larimer County
  • Andy Schultheiss (Speaker) Executive Director, Colorado Water Trust
  • Jerd Smith (Speaker) Fresh Water News
  • Jeff Stahla (Speaker) Public Information Coordinator, Northern Water
  • Reagan Waskom (Speaker) Director, Colorado Water Center, Colorado State University
  • Brian Werner (Speaker) Public Information Officer, Northern Water
  • Mely Whiting (Speaker) General Counsel, Trout Unlimited


(8:30 a.m. departure, $45 fee, lunch included)

This tour is full. If you wish to be put on the waiting list, contact Kevin Beaty.

Few issues in the West can both divide and unite communities like water rights. Conversations about who has access to the scarce resource and who doesn’t can quickly grow tense and are fundamental to the region’s future. This tour begins near the scenic Continental Divide, just outside Rocky Mountain National Park, with an overview of complex water laws and Colorado’s sprawling infrastructure. We’ll start at the eastern portal of the Colorado-Big Thompson Project. Built in the 1940s, the project pumps water for miles through tunnels dug deep in the mountains in an effort to plumb the arid state. Then, we’ll head down the mountain to hike around the site of the proposed Chimney Hollow Reservoir, a pool planned to serve Colorado’s thirsty Front Range cities. We’ll wrap up downstream, talking about pressures on water supplies for both agriculture and municipalities in the face of ongoing drought and a changing climate. We’ll also look to the solutions water managers, conservationists and farmers are considering to tackle these challenges. Total drive time: 4 hours. Good for those looking for some exercise.

Advance registration is required for all Thursday tours. Attendance on each tour is strictly limited, so registering early is important. All Thursday tours will return to the Lory Student Center at about 5:00 p.m.

Departure: Each bus will depart from locations near CSU’s Lory Student Center promptly at the times listed.

Important: Meet up with your tour leaders 30 minutes prior to your departure time near the SEJ registration desk on the third floor of the Lory Student Center to check in and walk together as a group to load on the correct bus at the crowded Transit Center. Free coffee and small breakfast available in the nearby ballroom.

Add to my calendar

Add to Google Add to Outlook (.ics)

Create your personal schedule through the official app, Whova!

Get Started