Slater Creek Project


Slater Creek experiences low flows and, at times, localized dry ups during the irrigation season, which negatively impact river connectivity and present barriers to fish migration. A partnership between a rancher in the Slater Creek watershed, Western Resource Advocates, and Colorado Water Trust was created to share water use for both the irrigation of hay meadows and pasture grass as well as the improvement of river connectivity and fish migration. In operating years, the project will benefit 32 miles of Slater Creek from the ranch to the confluence with the Little Snake River. The project will also benefit Instream Flow water rights in the same reach.


Loans & Leases

This Water Conservation Program will utilize split-season operation design. Project operations will continue historic irrigation uses for the water rights during the early season when streamflow is ample and will close headgates to boost flows when Slater Creek is most impacted by low flows. During operational years, diversions of the water rights will cease, and the water will be left in the stream from July 1st through the end of the irrigation season.


This project arose from focused outreach in the Slater Creek basin as part of WRA’s High Priority Streams Initiative. CWT initially served as a technical consultant to evaluate potential projects. When the ranch reached out with interest in a project, CWT and WRA partnered to develop and gain approval for this project.


Once implemented, the Slater Creek Project will restore

million gallons

acre-feet of water to Slater Creek


This project has been in development since 2023.