by Pam Zubeck
Be advised dam access will be restricted in the following manner:
- Rental vans (U-Haul, Ryder, etc.) or recreational vehicles (class A, class C, fifth wheels, travel/pop-up trailers and cab over campers) will not be allowed.
- Towed vehicles longer than 22 feet will not be allowed
- Vehicles of any kind are not allowed to stop on the dam
- No trailered and/or gasoline-powered watercraft allowed until the mussel inspection program begins on May 21, 2015
- Starting today, hand–launched, non-motorized (internal combustion engines only) and non-trailered boats — such as kayaks, canoes, float tubes — will be permitted and will be allowed on all days without inspections once the Rampart Recreation area opens.
- All other forms of recreation previously allowed at Rampart Reservoir, such as fishing, biking and hiking, are permitted unless otherwise restricted by U.S. Forest Service closures respective to the Waldo Canyon Fire burn area.
Once watercraft inspections begin on May 21, 2015, inspected boats will be allowed on the water Thursdays through Sundays, from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m., and closed to trailered/motorized boats (internal combustion engines only) on Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays throughout the summer.
Inspections will be required for all motorized, trailered boats prior to entering the water due to the threat of zebra and quagga mussel infestations and other aquatic nuisance species. The inspections are being conducted by Colorado Parks and Wildlife.
The inspections allow boat access on high-use days, while protecting Colorado Springs’ water system. Boaters are strongly encouraged to have their vessels cleaned, drained and dry prior to arrival and it is highly recommended boats are off the reservoir by 4:30 p.m. to ensure exit inspections and access out of the boat launch area before the gate closes at 5 p.m.
Approximately 70% of Colorado Springs’ drinking water passes through Colorado Springs Utilities-owned Rampart Reservoir.