Scott Ponds Natural Area Dam Safety Project

Update Nov. 13, 2017

The project is now complete. The pond filled quickly in Spring 2017 and was stocked with approximately 400 big trout and 100 smaller trout. The wait for the water court determination is now over and the Town has received the final decree for the dedicated water rights and the augmentation plan was approved. This was the last step to full project completion.


Community members joined Estes Park Mayor, Todd Jirsa, Town Board members, Town staff and project contractors for a ribbon-cutting ceremony to celebrate completion of the reconstructed Scott Ponds Natural Area dams November 16, 2016.

After much effort on obtaining flood grants for this project, the Town completed the $983,000 rehabilitation of the dams restoring the dams in accordance with current safety regulations in November, 2016. This included rebuilding of the upper dam, installing a new overflow spillway, and building a new outlet structure. The pond at the lower dam was deepened and the dam was regraded to safely convey storm runoff. American West Construction, LLC completed the project on schedule and within budget.

The adjacent areas disturbed during construction have been reseeded with a native seed mix including wildflowers. Natural creek flow and runoff will fill the ponds over the winter and spring. When full, the west pond will have an approximate depth of 10 feet at the dam outlet. Colorado Parks and Wildlife will stock this pond with rainbow, brown and brook trout in the spring.

During the 2013 flood, the lower dam at Scott Ponds Natural Area was breached. The Colorado Office of Emergency Management awarded the Town of Estes Park a Colorado Disaster Emergency Funds grant to finance the project. During the project design, Town staff considered the extensive public feedback received, including residents’ desires for consideration of wildlife habitat, fishing, birding and other recreational opportunities, natural aesthetics and property values, and reduced risk for flooding. For more information, please contact the Public Works Department at 970-577-3587.