A lot of visitors travelling through Montrose and the Western Slope stop at Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park on their way up Highway-50, over Monarch Pass, to travel the Arkansas River corridor. The upper Arkansas River Valley is a spectacle to behold, featuring the rugged wilderness of Brown’s Canyon and multiple 14rs towering from the convergence of three major mountain ranges. Now, just when nature lovers thought it couldn’t get any better, the Arkansas Headwaters Recreation Area, has announced that the BOR has made an additional 10-thousand acre feet of water available for this summer. It’s the result of a joint effort between the Bureau of Reclamation, the Southeastern Colorado Water Conservancy District and the Pueblo Board of Water Works.
AHRA Director Rob White says the river’s flow will be maintained at 700 cfs through August 15th.
The Voluntary Flow Management Program is a cooperative program crafted in the 1990′s with help from Trout Unlimited and the Arkansas Rivers Outfitters Association. Administered by the Bureau of Reclamation, in cooperation with the Southeastern Colorado Water Conservancy District, the VFMP provides water management guidelines that provide for whitewater flows in the Arkansas River for recreation users in the summer months, while also protecting and enhancing the fishery by establishing minimum flow guidelines throughout the rest of the year.