Wolford Mountain Reservoir, Colorado
Coming up on Wolford Mountain Reservoir from US Highway 40
The Wolford Mountain Reservoir is a 66,000 acre-foot reservoir on the Muddy Creek in Grand County, Colorado. The reservoir is owned and operated by the Colorado River District and represents a new model of cooperation and improvement for future water projects in Colorado. The improvement is that Wolford Mountain Reservoir provides a whole, new recreation site that allows for camping, fishing and boating opportunities in a formerly rather barren section of Grand County. The cooperation aspect is that upstream communities like Kremmling, Granby and Winter Park have agreements in place with Wolford Mountain Reservoir that give them a more dependable water supply. At the same time, Denver Water is allowed access to up to 40% of Wolford's water, giving the project much needed financial support from the growing cities on the Front Range.
Wolford Mountain Reservoir offers up to 1,550 surface acres of recreational access water with lake and stream fishing, boat ramps and rentals, a state-of-the-art fish cleaning station, facilities for the physically challenged, several picnic areas and a 48-unit campground with RV hookups (electric is in place but sanitary facilities are not). As the reservoir is located on BLM land, the surrounding area also offers some great hiking, mountain biking and wildlife viewing opportunities. 2/3 of the camping facilities can be reserved via email or by calling 1-800-472-4943, the rest are available first come, first served.
Since the reservoir was first opened, the Colorado Division of Wildlife and the Colorado River District have steadily kept stocking the lake with kokanee salmon and trout. The two organizations have also worked to establish a fishery on Muddy Creek downstream from the dam. There is a separate trail access for this area reached by parking at the dam, crossing the dam on foot and then descending to the creek area.
The Colorado River District has committed a large part of the water resources of the reservoir to helping in the recovery of endangered Colorado fish species such as the humpback chub, the Colorado pikeminnow, the bonytail and the razorback sucker. Winter sees this area as a popular range for deer and elk. The lower slopes of Wolford Mountain (east of the reservoir) have been worked over to provide enhanced habitat for big game. This has helped to reduce their movements across the reservoir and across Highway 40. Through much of the winter you can view deer and elk grazing in the areas along Muddy Creek below the dam.
Wolford Mountain in the background
Wolford Mountain Reservoir - Winter Park Ski Area - SolVista Basin Ski Area
Rocky Mountain National Park - Colorado River Headwaters Scenic Byway
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