San Miguel River plan pits fish, water users

MONTROSE — A proposal to set minimum stream flows along a nearly 17-mile stretch of the lower San Miguel River is drawing praise from some recreation groups but concerns from some water users.

The proposal by the Bureau of Land Management and Colorado wildlife officials would affect a stretch of the river about three miles west of Nucla. The proposal includes a minimum stream flow of 325 cubic feet per second during the spring runoff period from April 15 to June 14.

Some conservation groups and outfitters say the plan would improve habitat for three fish, including the roundtail chub.

Montrose County commissioners and Farmers’ Water Development Co. have questioned whether there is enough water to fulfill the plan.


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