EPA and the Army Corps of Engineers aim to cut protections for millions of stream miles across the United States 

What’s happening now? 

Early in 2017, President Trump directed the EPA to first repeal and then replace the Clean Water Rule. The Administration’s efforts to rescind the 2015 Rule have been partially blocked, as the 2015 Rule is in effect in 22 states. The new rule, unveiled today, is an unwarranted effort to replace the 2015 Rule. The new rule is NOT based in science and is NOT consistent with the goals of the Clean Water Act. The new rule proposal will undermine long standing protections for wetlands and small streams, it will harm hunting and fishing in America. However, it is not the final chapter to the story.

We expect the Administration and the agencies to unveil a replacement for the 2015 Rule which may well be a true gutting of the Clean Water Act, leaving millions of stream miles and millions of acres of wetlands permanently unprotected. We expect the replacement final rule later this year.

Why should sportsmen care? 

The Clean Water Act and the 2015 Rule are vital to TU’s work and to anglers across the nation. Whether TU is working with farmers to restore small headwater streams in West Virginia, removing acidic pollution caused by abandoned mines in Pennsylvania, or protecting the world-famous salmon-producing, 14,000-jobs-sustaining watershed of Bristol Bay, Alaska, we rely on the Clean Water Act to safeguard our water quality improvements. 

TU members, and sportsmen and women nationwide, want to move forward with progress on cleaning up our nation’s waters, not go backwards. Thus, the Clean Water Act needs to be improved, not weakened, as is the case in today’s announcement. Learn more.

September Currents: Catch up on the latest from CTU

Public Lands Month & LWCF Action Alert 

September is Public Lands Month and we celebrate our nation's rich legacy of public lands and the natural resources that depend on those lands - including the amazing fishing and other outdoor recreation opportunities that our public lands support. National TU is preparing a series of blog posts about the major agencies responsible for managing our federal public lands - the US Forest Service, Bureau of Land Management, National Park Service, and US Fish and Wildlife Service. You can read the first post - featuring the story behind the Forest Service- here.

One of our nation's most successful programs investing in public lands and outdoor recreation is the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF). We celebrated earlier this year as Congress passed and the President signed legislation permanently authorizing this program, which has invested hundreds of millions of dollars into Colorado's great outdoors from our iconic national parks to community trails and parks in our own backyards.

LWCF doesn't depend on your tax dollars but rather is funded by a portion of revenues from offshore drilling royalties. Unfortunately, these funds are anything but secure and are regularly raided by Congress for other purposes during annual appropriations. Now, Congress is considering legislation to secure those dedicated funds on a permanent basis so that LWCF can continue to support public lands and outdoor recreation for generations to come.

You can help by asking your Representative to support this important legislation. Please take a moment this Public Lands Month to speak up for continued investment in our public lands!

 See all the upcoming volunteer opportunities, events, fishing stories, and more. Click below!

Need Volunteers for the last Greenback Stockings of the year!

Greenback Stocking: Herman Gulch
Monday, September 23, 2019
9:30 AM 2:00 PM

Learn More & Sign Up Here

Greenback Stocking: Dry Gulch
Monday, September 23, 2019
9:30 AM 2:00 PM

Learn More & Sign up Here

Upcoming STREAM Girls - Volunteer or Sign up your Girl Scout

SATURDAY, OCTOBER 12, 2019

Longmont, CO 8 a.m. - 6 p.m.

Sign Up to Volunteer | Sign up Girl Scout

SUNDAY, OCTOBER 27TH, 2019

Montrose, CO 8 a.m. - 6 p.m. 

Sign Up to Volunteer | Sign up Girl Scout

What is STREAM Girls? Learn more about this exciting program!

Take Action for YOUR Public Lands

bobby-burch-e_Q3BhySf5U-unsplash.jpg

September is Public Lands Month and we celebrate our nation's rich legacy of public lands and the natural resources that depend on those lands - including the amazing fishing and other outdoor recreation opportunities that our public lands support. National TU is preparing a series of blog posts about the major agencies responsible for managing our federal public lands - the US Forest Service, Bureau of Land Management, National Park Service, and US Fish and Wildlife Service. You can read the first post - featuring the story behind the Forest Service- here.

One of our nation's most successful programs investing in public lands and outdoor recreation is the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF). We celebrated earlier this year as Congress passed and the President signed legislation permanently authorizing this program, which has invested hundreds of millions of dollars into Colorado's great outdoors from our iconic national parks to community trails and parks in our own backyards.

LWCF doesn't depend on your tax dollars but rather is funded by a portion of revenues from offshore drilling royalties. Unfortunately, these funds are anything but secure and are regularly raided by Congress for other purposes during annual appropriations. Now, Congress is considering legislation to secure those dedicated funds on a permanent basis so that LWCF can continue to support public lands and outdoor recreation for generations to come.

You can help by asking your Representative to support this important legislation. Please take a moment this Public Lands Month to speak up for continued investment in our public lands!

CTU 50th Anniversary Film headed to Zimmerman Lake this summer (Behind the Scenes)

20190702_085320_HDR.jpg

On July 2, 2019 passionate TU volunteer and native trout angler, John Trammell headed up with CTU and Josh Duplechian of Trout Unlimited to participate in filming for CTU’s 50th Anniversary Film featuring the native trout work on Zimmerman Lake. Below is his personal account of the day. Enjoy!

John and his daughter Melissa.

John and his daughter Melissa.

MY LIFE AS A FLY FISHERMAN PART 21: Greenbacks and Zimmerman Lake

by John Trammell

Up front I’ll confess that not much of Part 21 is about fishing, but about what I observed at Zimmerman Lake on July 2 this year. What I saw was a team of government agencies and Trout Unlimited volunteers working scientifically and physically to preserve and propagate our state fish - the greenback cutthroat trout. I could not have been more impressed by the skills and hard work I saw. Really amazing.

Zimmerman lake is 40 miles east of Walden, near the continental divide, at 10,000+ feet elevation. It has a population of a few hundred greenbacks, placed there to become the source of eggs for the purpose of increasing the numbers of our state fish. On the day my daughter Melissa and I were there, the steep trail up to the lake was both rough and muddy, with numerous snowdrifts. (The day before, the workers had shoveled away drifts that were impassable to ATVs.)

The ancestors of the greenbacks in Zimmerman Lake were a small number of fish rescued from their only remaining natural habitat, Bear Creek near Colorado Springs, when the habitat was threatened by a wildfire. Being so few, when they’re artificially spawned it is important to preserve genetic diversity. Observing how that is done was fascinating - not only because of what was done, but how it was done under difficult field conditions.

When we arrived at the work site the fish were already being held in floating mesh pens. Wader-clad workers separated them into categories to be processed on a long table set up amid mud, snow and trippy exposed tree roots. They were given an anesthetic bath to make them more docile and to reduce shock while they were being processed.

20190702_121107.jpg

CPW’s project leader Kevin Rogers told me that his agency knows each greenback in the lake individually. Each has a little VIE tag behind its eye that he identifies to a person who then uses a hand-held electronic device to read an internal pittag. Each fish is described verbally (e.g, “ripe female, good condition; immature male”), its pittag recorded, measured, weighed, and photographed beside its PIT number. Then the fish is put into a five-gallon bucket of water, to recover from the anesthetic. This all occurs rapidly as the trout are passed down the table. This information is used to select males and females to have their eggs and milt combined. Records of the combinations are kept with the intent to achieve maximum genetic diversity.

After the anesthetic has worn off and the greenbacks are trying to swim out of the buckets, they are returned to the lake. Forest Ranger Chris Carrell hustled those 40-pound buckets down to the lake all afternoon, quickly returning the empties back to the table for more greenbacks. After a while, realizing the physical toll it was taking on him, Melissa helped. Although she wasn’t there as a representative of her agency, the National Park Service, she also helped with the work at the table. Being somewhat enfeebled by the trip up to the lake, I just sat, and observed.

Fertilized eggs are treated with an iodine solution, and taken to CPW’s Mt. Shavano hatchery to be hatched and reared for stocking into suitable waters. In addition to the objective of saving them from extinction, the aim is to have a sustainable population of greenbacks for Coloradoans to enjoy.

I’ve long been a fan of native cutthroat trout, so I’m grateful to the State of Colorado for going to the expense and trouble to save the greenbacks. And I’m grateful to the agency people and TU volunteers who do the work.

“I know I volunteer because I love trout, trout habitat, and trout fishing. Of those three, I think it’s the habitat I love best, and not just because without it we can’t have the other two. It’s because I just love it, everything about it. I get a thrill every time I approach a trout stream.”
— John Trammell

Swan River Restoration received $270K grant

1027096ffe16b3e7131953a67b581626_f8.jpg

REPOST from Summit Daily by Deepan Dutta

BRECKENRIDGE — As part of its Fishing is Fun grant program, Colorado Parks and Wildlife has awarded $755,000 to 11 projects across the state. The program aims to improve angling opportunities by funding projects that improve angling access, fishing habitat, or trail and boat access.

One of the beneficiaries is Summit County’s Swan River Restoration Project, the county’s effort to restore the Swan River after it was destroyed by dredge mining during the twilight of the Colorado gold rush in the late 1800s and early 1900s.

After the first phase of the project, which also received a Parks and Wildlife grant, a mile of stream channel has been restored, establishing year-round flows, creating 16 acres of new riparian habitat and improving habitat for fish like the mottled sculpin.

The project has been awarded $270,000 from the Fishing is Fun program for a second phase covering another mile of stream channel. Another $2.4 million in funding will come from sponsors.

We have a winner!

9d4e251d-eb0a-457a-a10d-a31e092462f5.jpg

WINNER of the Boulder Boat Works drift boat IS: #0457 Joseph Kneib of Colorado Springs

Thank you to Boulder Boat Works as they have offered anyone who did not win, a discount of the value of your ticket(s) to be used towards a purchase with them.

If you did not win this boat, the San Luis Valley Trout Unlimited raft raffle is still going on till September 21: https://coloradotu.org/slvturaffle

The secret's out - we are making a movie

DSC_0443.jpg

To commemorate our 50th anniversary this year, CTU has been working on a short film to help tell the stories of our past through the eyes of the future generation. Our stars, George Bryant and Emma Brown are both members of the Greenbacks and have been traveling to some pretty amazing places across Colorado this summer for this film.

Recently, the project took them to Fraser, CO to learn all about the work that CTU and the local chapter has done for the headwaters of the Colorado River. Kirk Klancke, president of the Colorado Headwaters TU chapter, was their guide and shared stories of the “boots on the ground” efforts they have done for the Fraser River through willow plantings, channel deepening, and voluntary no fishing days.

One of the most impactful efforts on the Upper Colorado is how the “Learning by Doing” partnership came to be after plenty of calls, campaigns, letters, and outspoken members of the community urged Denver Water to save the Fraser River. After a negotiation with the help of National TU, the Learning by Doing collaborative agreement put river conservation on table with other water stakeholders.

The film will be premiering at the CTU 50th Anniversary Celebration in downtown Denver at Avanti Food & Beverage | A Collective Eatery in October!

All are welcome and ticket details will be coming soon! —>

DSC_0501.gif
logo.png
screenshot-avantifandb.com-2019.08.15-11_21_19.png

2019 Summer Youth Camp Video features youth learning about rivers and fly fishing

Greenback and CTU volunteer, Emma Brown, put together a great feature about the 2019 CTU River Conservation and Fly Fishing Youth Camp in Almont, CO. Check out the great video she filmed above!

The River Conservation and Fly Fishing Camp is a week long camp designed to educate 14 to 18 year old students on the importance of cold water conservation and provide hands-on fly fishing instruction. Approximately 20 students are selected each year based on their qualifications and a written essay on why they would like to attend the camp.

Camp classes include: Principles of Ecology, Hydrogeology, Aquatic Vertebrate and Invertebrate Sampling, Hydrology, Trout Behavior, Trout Stream Entomology, The Biology of Pollution, Acid Deposition, and Politics of Conservation and Human Effects on the Rocky Mountain.

In addition, the camp will include hands-on instruction on Fly Tying, Fly Casting, Stream-side Ethics, Angling Literature, Stream-side Botany, Wader Safety and Survival, and The Evolution of an
Angler. The campers will also participate in a watershed project to repair habitat in a nearby stream.

The drift boat raffle sold out - but you can still enter to win another boat!

thumbnail_IMG_3545.jpg

The Colorado Trout Unlimited 50th Anniversary Drift Boat by Boulder Boat Works raffle sold out today! Thank you to everyone who participated, making this the largest and most successful fundraiser of all time! Proceeds from the raffle go right back into the organization and support our mission work to conserve, protect, and restore coldwater fisheries and their watersheds. If you entered the raffle, you can watch us draw the winner LIVE on our Facebook Page. Make sure you’re following us to be notified when we go live on August 19, 2019 12:00pm for the official raffle drawing.

But I missed out - how can I enter to win another boat?

If you want to try to win another boat, the San Luis Valley Chapter of TU is also raffling off a boat with only 350 entries. This 13 foot Rocky Mountain Raft with Down River Equipment San Juan XD AS Fishing Frame is valued at $6500 plus $2655 cash to cover tax withholding making the total package value $9,155. Proceeds from the raffle help the San Luis Valley Chapter of TU to protect, conserve and restore coldwater fisheries and watersheds in the Upper Rio Grande Basin through this CTU raffle!

1402804_978667552186172_4573088982999979577_o.jpg

Entries to the San Luis Valley 13 Ft Rocky Mountain Raft with Fishing Frame are:

$40 per ticket

or

3 tickets for $100 (best deal!)

Online Ticket Sales end Thursday September 19, 2019 at 12:00pm.

Drawing will be held Saturday September 21, 2019 at 2:00pm at the Rio Grande Club & Resort in South Fork, CO. Raffle Participants NEED NOT to be present to win. ONLY 350 tickets will be sold!

Raffle Details:

TROUT UNLIMITED NEW TROUT adj 2-color A

Winner will be contacted via phone and then email if needed after the drawing. Winner must provide proof of identity (i.e. State Drivers License – along with W9 for tax purposes) to verify winner and link it with same ticket purchase/stub record in our database. 

Tickets purchased online are processed and transferred onto physical tickets that are added to all the others. Purchasing your tickets online or in person do not increase your chances in any way. You will receive an email receipt detailing your raffle ticket purchase.

This raffle is conducted under Colorado Raffle License No. 2019-14255 , and is open to Colorado residents ONLY.

See our Raffle License here.