Storm water runoff occurs when rain or snowmelt flows over the ground on its way to storm drains, drainage ways, creeks, and lakes. Storm water picks up debris, chemicals, dirt, pet wastes, and other pollutants and deposits them in water bodies we use for swimming, fishing and drinking.
Remember, runoff from a rain storm or snow melt is not treated at a wastewater treatment facility, so extra effort is needed by all of us!
We all live and work in a watershed. Once a single drop of rain reaches the earth, its eventual journey is determined by the ‘watershed’ in which it lands. A watershed is defined as “the geographic region within which water drains into a particular river, stream, or body of water”.
No matter where you are in a watershed, what you do affects the entire water system. Collectively, our behaviors can have a profound influence on water quality. The education of people about their role in influencing water quality on a neighborhood watershed scale is of prime importance. Much needs to be learned about the best ways to control pollution sources, how to promote stewardship in neighborhoods, and adopt better water quality stewardship practices at home and at work. The watershed that all of the streams, creeks, and rivers drain to in the metro Denver area is the South Platte watershed. The Town of Columbine Valley is in the Chatfield Basin.
Because of its beautiful scenery, trails, and proximity, more than 3 million people annually visit the over 42,000 acres now protected for conservation and recreation within Chatfield Basin. Plum Creek flows through a part of Chatfield Basin. Chatfield Watershed consists of all portions of Plum Creek and its tributaries, and the South Platte River downstream of Strontia Springs Reservoir outfall.