The Big Thompson Canyon is a heavily visited corridor which provides access to Rocky Mountain National Park and Estes Park and is enjoyed by community members and visitors for a variety of outdoor experiences including trout fishing and other river activities. Over thirty years ago, volunteers came together to build a fishing pier on USFS land at mile marker 72 in the Big Thompson Canyon that was accessible to people with a range of mobility levels. The pier served an estimated 40,000 visitors each year, but was destroyed by the 2013 flood. In 2016, BTWC obtained funds from a Colorado Parks and Wildlife Fishing is Fun grant to help construct a new access pier that meets USFS standards at the same location. BTWC worked with Rocky Mountain Flycasters and many generous companies in the area to design and construct the pier, often at heavily discounted prices or no cost as a generous donation to the community amenity. In 2019, BTWC and partners completed construction of the pier so that the community, including those with mobility issues, can once again enjoy fishing, birdwatching and more at the former location. The pier was constructed in a manner that will better withstand higher flows during future flood events, prolonging the community benefits for generations to come.
economy (CPW talk, 2018). As post-flood restoration allows the fishery to improve, both the number of anglers and their economic contribution can be expected to increase annually.
Following the 2013 floods the pier was almost completely destroyed and no longer provided access to the river
Big Thompson Canyon Access Pier
Engineered and constructed a newly remodeled, resilient pier
Constructed an accessible point of access pathway to the pier
Improved bank erosion and installed over 80 native plants
Engaged numerous organizations and volunteers in the construction and restoration of the pier
Installed educational signage