Bennett to Carry Hermosa Creek Bill

The Hermosa Creek River Protection Workgroup’s discussions about how best to manage the 100,000-acre Hermosa Creek watershed north of Durango began in 2008 and wrapped up in early 2010. The end consensus product represented something all interests could live with. The focus of the Workgroup was to provide protection for values identified while allowing for the continuation of reasonable water development. Senator Michael Bennet has embodied the group’s recommendations in a draft bill, the Hermosa Creek Watershed Protection Act of 2011. In so doing, Bennet is honoring the workgroup’s efforts. To commemorate the work and Act, Senator Bennet visited Durango over the Memorial Day weekend. As he stated, “I had the pleasure of spending my morning hiking the Hermosa Creek Trail with family and several local groups. It was a great experience. We were able to discuss a bill I will be proposing to help protect and preserve the Hermosa Creek Watershed.”

In addition, thanks to a joint effort between the Colorado Division of Wildlife (DOW) and the U.S. Forest Service, the Colorado River cutthroat trout, once close to landing on the endangered species list, will be given an exclusive home in upper Hermosa Creek. Later this summer, the DOW plans to remove nonnative fish from a four mile stretch of the waterway and replace them with Colorado cutthroats.