Sunday, February 20th - Photo Of The Week... A small herd
of Elk grazing on the hillsides above the switchbacks of FDR 128, as the
first rays of sunrise light the trees with color... A photo of the scene
taken on Wednesday morning has been chosen as this weeks featured
"Photo Of The Week"...
|Elk grazing at sunrise on the
hillsides above the switchbacks of FDR 128 on Wednesday morning.
Saturday, February 19th - Concerns Raised Over Big Thompson
Water Quality... In an article published in the Friday edition of
the, "Estes Park
Trail Gazette", it was reported that concerns over the water
quality of the Big Thompson River have recently been voiced by the, "Colorado
Water Quality Control Commission"... The Commission plans to
investigate the results of a 2003 study that indicates excessive levels
of various chemicals present in the river from below the, "Estes
Park Power Plant", downstream to Loveland... The article
stated, "The study found the following in the water: silver,
arsenic, copper, iron, mercury, manganese, lead, nickel, benzene,
toluene, ethylbenzene, xylenes, methyl tertiary butyl ether, total
coliforms, e coli, total organic carbon, calcium, magnesium, sodium,
potassium, sulfate, chloride, bicarbonate, ammonia, nitrate+nitrate,
kjeldahl nitrogen, orthophosphate, dissolved and total phosphorous...
The Commission’s primary concern is for the discharge of copper into
drinking water supplies that exceeds water quality standards... As much
as about 100 times the water quality standard has been released into the
Big Thompson River in the last few years... Excessive amounts of copper
are lethal to fish and can make humans sick with gastrointestinal
problems... Research studies indicate that even small excesses of copper
in drinking water may contribute to Alzheimer’s disease and
cardiovascular disease... Copper in drinking water has also caused fatal
cirrhosis of the liver in the past, but is a rare problem today..."
The complete, "Trail
Gazette", article can be found via the link provided below...
Friday, February 18th -
Trailer Jack-knifed Near Combat Rock... FDR
128 was closed for about an hour this afternoon as residents worked to
free a trailer which had jack-knifed just above switchbacks near Combat
Rock... The vehicle had almost made the steep rise when it slid back
down and into the rocks, completely blocking the road... This occurred
right at the time that children attending Big Thompson Elementary were
being dropped off... The Stage Stop Café provided warmth and shelter
for the children,
as well as giving them free chips and hot chocolate... Resident
and parent, Bridget Spangler, walked down to the bus stop in Drake and
watched over the children at the Stage Stop until their parents could get
down to pick them up... The vehicle was eventually freed with the help
of resident Greg Cooper and his older Land Cruiser... Many thanks to the
Stage Stop Café, Bridget, Greg and the others who worked to get our
road open and making sure that our children were safe...
|Truck and trailer
jack-knifed near Combat Rock at 4:30PM
||Greg Cooper helps
pull truck free with his '75 Land Cruiser
Thursday, February 17th - Volunteers Needed For Larimer County’s
Parks & Open Lands... Volunteers are needed for Larimer County
Parks and Open Lands programs and projects beginning this spring...
Interested individuals are invited to attend the next Volunteer
Orientation on Saturday, February 19, from 9 – 11:30 a.m., at The
Bison Visitor Center at, "Carter
Lake"... There are a variety of volunteer opportunities to
anyone interested in restoration, re-vegetation, recreation or education
programs... The orientation will focus on details about each of our
programs and on valuable training and other benefits... Snacks and
beverages will be provided... To secure a spot call: (970) 679-4553 or
email Pbrennan@larimer.org to
sign up... More information can be found by clicking link below...
Wednesday, February 16th - Horsetooth Mountain Park Prescribed
Burn Today... The, "Larimer
County Parks and Open Lands", Department staff will conduct
slash pile burns today at "Horsetooth
Mountain Park", west of Fort Collins... The pile burns are part
of an on-going wildfire mitigation/forest health project in the Park,
involving mechanical thinning and hand piling tree limbs and dead
material... The slash piles will be burned when there is at least 3
inches of snow on the ground to prevent fire spread... An interagency
team of trained firefighters will conduct the burns in accordance to, "Larimer County Burn Permit Regulations"... Smoke
from the burning piles will be visible from Fort Collins, Loveland and
along the Northern Front Range... Please do not call 911 or your local
law enforcement, as they are already aware of burns... If you have any
questions, please contact Mark Caughlan at (970) 498-5600... The
Horsetooth Mountain Park Forest Management Project has been going on
since the fall of 2001, and will continue in the future... Approximately
60 acres along the South park boundary and 20 acres along the North park
boundary have been treated to date...
3rd Annual Reusable Art Contest
For K-12 Students... Are you a K-12 student in Larimer County???
Are you creative and do you want a chance to win some great prizes??? If
so, then enter the student "Reusable Art" contest, where kids
make art from trash... But hurry; the deadline for entries is Monday, February
- Contest open to all K-12 students in Larimer
- Artwork can be of any kind, but must be made with
scrap materials (old cans, used paper, scrap metal, etc.)
- Artwork may be designed to hang on wall, hang from
ceiling, or stand freely.
- If free-standing, it should not be more than 18
inches wide or long.
- Judges will choose 12 finalists by March 11.
- On April 23, finalists’ artwork will be displayed
at the open house at the Garbage Garage, Larimer County’s waste
and recycling education center (located at the landfill).
- Visitors to the open house will vote for three
grand prize winners; in case of a tie, judges will make the final
- Prizes: Finalists will receive a package of
“recycling goodies;” each grand prize winner will also receive
$50 and have their artwork displayed at the Garbage Garage for one
- Winners agree to the use of their name on Larimer
County’s Web site, in press releases, and in other means of public
Participating teachers or individual students: Call
498-5772 by February 28 to make arrangements to have your artwork
judged. Individual entries should be dropped off at the Larimer County
Solid Waste Department's downtown Fort Collins office at 200 W. Oak,
Suite 4000, Fort Collins. The office is open from 8:00 a.m. to 4:30
p.m. Questions? Call 498-5772. Complete informaton can be
found via the link provided below...
Tuesday, February 15th - Winter Storm Warning Lifted... The
National Weather Service in Denver has lifted the Winter Storm Warning
previously set to expire at 10PM for the Drake, Glen Haven and Storm Mountain
areas... Roads remain slick with icing beginning to occur in many
spots... The narrows of the Big Thompson Canyon are icy on the curves...
FDR 128 is improved from this morning with no accidents or ditched
vehicles as of 6PM... Dropping temperatures overnight are expected to
increase icing in the usual areas... Residents are advised to use extreme
caution if traveling tonight or early in the the morning, particularly
on Railsback Hill and the switchbacks of FDR 128... 4WD, chains and/or
adequate snow tires are highly recommended...
Storm Warning Issued... The
National Weather Service in Denver has extended a "Winter Storm
Warning" to include Larimer County, northwest Weld County, and
the foothills of Boulder County , including the Drake, Glen
Haven,. and Storm Mountain areas, until 10PM this evening... This Is
A Warning And Not A Watch!!! SNOW WILL
CONTINUE THROUGH THIS EVENING AND WILL BE HEAVY AT TIMES. STORM TOTAL
SNOWFALL WILL BE 10 TO 20 INCHES IN THE FOOTHILLS...AND 5 TO 10 INCHES
IN THE FORT COLLINS AREA. TRAVEL WILL BE HAZARDOUS AND MAY BECOME
IMPOSSIBLE ON LESS TRAVELED ROADS IN THE FOOTHILLS. IF YOU MUST
TRAVEL...ALLOW PLENTY OF EXTRA TIME AND CHECK THE LATEST ROAD AND
WEATHER CONDITIONS BEFORE LEAVING... This warning has been lifted for
FDR 128 Extremely
Hazardous... 9:00AM UPDATE: FDR 128
remains extremely hazardous with travel being discouraged... Larimer
County remains on, "Accident
Alert", with snow continuing to fall at a moderate rate...
Accumulations up to 6 inches have been reported on Storm Mountain...
|"Railsback Hill" on
FDR 128 at 9AM appearing more like a ski run than a road.
8:00AM UPDATE: Multiple
accidents are being reported throughout the Northern Colorado area with
area roads being extremely slick... Emergency services are currently
responding to multi-vehicle accident on Hwy 34, three miles west of
Drake near mile marker 71... Larimer County has just gone to, "Accident Alert", status...
As of 7:30AM: It is
being reported that several vehicles are stuck on FDR 128 with the road
being nearly impassable... The switchbacks are reported as being a sheet
of ice with even fully studded and chained 4WD vehicles experiencing extreme
difficulty in this area... The extreme icing in this area is partially
due to the heavy use of Mag-chloride as a dust inhibitor last summer now
causing the snow to melt on contact with the road surface then
refreezing to ice as temperatures drop... Recent warm temperatures also
are a contributing factor to the icing... Any travel on FDR 128 at this
time is highly discouraged...
Fire Truck Insurance Soon Due...
This year's insurance for the SMERT fire truck is soon coming due... SMERT, Storm Mountain
Emergency Response Team, provides emergency services to the Storm
Mountain area and are in many cases our first responders... Having a
fire truck on location can save valuable time in emergency situations...
SMERT is asking
residents who wish to contribute to the insurance to mail a check to:
|P O Box 73
|Drake, CO 80515
Snow Falling Across Area...
As of 6AM, snow is continuing to fall across our area with
accumulations of 1-2 inches being reported... Roads are snowy with some
icing in the usual spots on FDR 128... Residents are advised to use
extreme caution and allow extra time for travel this morning... Chains,
4WD, and adequate snow tires are recommended on FDR 128... Snowfall is
expected to continue through the day... No official watches or warnings
are currently in effect for our area...
News posts from previous weeks are located in our "News
Archive" which can be found by clicking the button below:
Storm Mountain Net