Community and Learning

Watershed planning leaders and practitioners throughout Colorado continue to collaborate, share their knowledge, and build support systems for each other as they plan for their watersheds. Below you will find links to recorded peer calls and notes and slides from peer field trips and workshops. All upcoming peer learning events are also listed, along with registration information.

Apply for the Flows Cohort Program

Are you interested in participating in a cohort focused on environmental and recreational flows?

The Environmental & Recreational Flows Cohort Training Program (Flows Cohort Program) is designed to meet the professional needs of watershed planning practitioners who are leading flows-related projects or programs as part of a watershed planning process, offered in a cohort format to promote skill-building and peer networking among watershed planning practitioners facing similar challenges.

Applications are now open! Applications are due no later than June 21, 2024. For your application to be considered complete, you will need to complete this form by 11:59 pm on Friday, June 21, 2024. 

Use the buttons below to review the Program Overview and access the Application. 

Upcoming Events

Mancos Field Trip

July 22-24, 2024 in Mancos, CO

Register Here and full agenda

Peer Call

August 19, 2024, 10:00-11:30am

On Zoom

Agenda coming soon

 

Peer Calls

Understanding How Watershed, Forest, and Other Planning Initiatives Come Together

4/25/2024

Through a guided presentation, small group discussions, and examples shared by watershed planning leads, River Network and Strategic by Nature highlight examples of communities across Colorado who are integrating watershed, forest, and other planning efforts to achieve desired outcomes for their communities.

Presentations included:

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Planning Types and Considerations, Andrea Harbin Monahan, CWCB

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Upper Poudre Resiliency Plan and Poudre River Health Assessment, Hally Strevey, Coalition for the Poudre River Watershed

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Upper Arkansas Watershed Partnership, Brian Murphy, River Network

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View the agenda and break out notes.

View the video recording of the call.

Watershed Planning 101 Webinar

2/15/2024

This webinar introduces watershed planning and the basic elements to consider as you get started with watershed planning in your community. Participants will learn from two examples of watershed planning processes presented by Upper Gunnison River Water Conservancy District and Southwest Decision Resources. This webinar is presented by River Network and Colorado Water Conservation Board.

Presentations included:

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Watershed Planning 101, Brian Murphy and Chelsea Silva, River Network, and Andrea Harbin Monahan, Colorado Water Conservation Board

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Altar Valley Watershed Plan (Arizona), Julia Guglielmo, Southwest Decision Resources

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Upper Gunnison Basin Watershed Management Plan (Colorado), Cheryl Cwelich, Upper Gunnison River Water Conservancy District

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View the agenda and call resources.

View the video recording of the call.

Ask a Practitioner

Data Management and Tools

8/15/21

Hannah Holm, Colorado Mesa University, and Seth Mason, Lotic Hydrological, discuss their approaches and experience with managing the vast amounts of data from a river health assessment. They cover two aspects of data within the SMP process:

Data management and synthesis needs, and how and when to create a plan (see the Assess Conditions phase of the SMP process).

Understanding where to source data for an SMP and tools that are available to give you a head start, such as the Colorado River Basin Data Dashboards.

Using Recreation Surveys to Understand Community Preferences

8/26/20

Eagle River Watershed Council and Middle Colorado Watershed Council discuss customized approaches to understanding community’s preferences on river flows, uses, and access. More information on the American Whitewater flow preference survey and other approaches for understanding river-based recreation can be found here.

Peer Workshops

Environmental Flows Cohort Teaser

10/2/2023

During this workshop, participants learned about the environmental flows process, how it relates to Stream Management Plans, and how to measure flow. Participants explored the barriers and opportunities to environmental flows and learned about American Whitewater’s flow measurement tool. This workshop was formatted as a “teaser” for the 2024 environmental flows cohort hosted by River Network, Western Resource Advocates, and Colorado Water Trust. This workshop was held as a pre-pre conference workshop at 2023 Sustaining Colorado Watersheds Conference in Avon, CO.

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Introduction and Colorado Stream Management Plan Peer Learning Network, Stacy Beaugh, Strategic By Nature, and Chelsea Silva, River Network

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Environmental Flows Cohort Teaser, Stephanie Scott, Scott Solutions Consulting

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How to Measure Flows 101, Seth Mason, Lotic Hydrological & Jay Skinner, Western Resource Advocates

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Steps Beyond Flows Assessment & Evaluation, Tony LaGreca, Colorado Water Trust

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View the agenda and notes.

Gunnison SMP/IWMP Field Trip & Wet Meadows Tour

8/2/2023 – 8/4/2023

Wet meadows tour: Yampa River Collaborative visited Upper Gunnison River Water Conservancy District  to learn about their wet meadows restoration work. The goal of the visit was to generate ideas for how to implement similar projects in the Yampa River Basin.

Gunnison SMP/IWMP Field Trip: Participants explored the Gunnison Integrated Water Management Plan and tested out tools and approaches used in the planning process. Training on wet meadows assessments and macroinvertebrate sampling focused on two indicators of river health (floodplain connectivity and aquatic biota). Participants participated in implementation site visits to learn about watershed system optimization.

Colorado SMP Library