LITTLETON, Colo. — June 11, 2020— Public access to Waterton Canyon will resume on weekdays only starting Monday, June 15, 2020. The canyon will follow normal operating hours on weekdays, opening a half hour before sunrise and closing a half hour after sunset, and will remain closed on weekends until further notice. As part of a phased reopening plan, Denver Water will closely monitor the weekday use over the next month to inform a successful weekend opening as well.
“While it hasn’t been easy, we’ve been able to open other facilities within the social distancing guidelines as they are around reservoirs where people can spread out or in the case of the High Line Canal, a long trail with many access points,” said Brandon Ransom, manager of recreation for Denver Water. “Waterton Canyon presents more challenges as there are limited access points and less ability to spread out since it is a service road for our operation and maintenance crews.”
Denver Water encourages following safety guidelines like wearing face masks and maintaining safe social distancing. Denver Water staff will have limited ability to provide support in case of emergencies. People should also limit gathering around wildlife and blocking the service road for working vehicles. Recreationists should bring their own water as facilities may be limited or unavailable.
Visitors are asked to park in a safe and responsible manner at the visitor parking lot on Waterton Road across the street from the main canyon entrance. Those who do not follow parking regulations may be ticketed and/or towed.
Denver Water’s priority in Waterton Canyon is the health and safety of our employees, their families, and the critical infrastructure. Following these guidelines and support from the community is necessary to maintain a safe and reliable water supply for 1.5 million people in the Denver metro area.
“Waterton Canyon is a popular recreation destination and we recognize the closure was an inconvenience and ask the public to help us keep our resources and employees safe,” said Heath Stuerke, Strontia Springs Dam supervisor. “The recent closure allowed us to utilize this time to improve the recreation experience by performing our annual dust mitigation project where we close the canyon for a few weeks out of the year.”
Hikers and bikers on the Colorado Trail should seek alternative access points due to weekend closures. Alternative access points can be found at www.coloradotrail.org.
Denver Water offers recreation opportunities at nine of its operational facilities with a wide range of amenities, like camping, boating, fishing, hiking and much more. For more information or updates on the status of Denver Water's recreation facilities, please visit denverwater.org/recreation.
Note: Based on updated guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the State of Colorado, access to Waterton Canyon closed to the public on March 18, 2020.