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Water Sources

We treat drinking water from two sources:

  • The Colorado-Big Thompson (CBT) Project via Horsetooth Reservoir: and
  • The Cache la Poudre River.

Colorado-Big Thompson Project (CBT)

The CBT Project diverts water from the upper Colorado River and stores it in Lake Granby for later delivery to Carter Lake and Horsetooth Reservoir. Northern Water manages the CBT project and sets the quota each year that determines how much water is available per share or unit. This quota significantly affects the supply available in a given year. The SCWTA Water Resources group manage the individual water portfolios for each of the Tri-Districts.

Cache la Poudre River

The Cache la Poudre River Watershed drains approximately 1,889 square miles above the canyon mouth northwest of Fort Collins, Colorado. In an average year, the watershed provides approximately 274,000 acre feet of water . More than 80 percent of the water produced occurs during the peak snowmelt months of April through July. Therefore, the amount of treatable water in the Poudre River in any given year is highly variable and dependent mainly upon snowpack conditions in the drainage area above the canyon mouth. 

Watershed Monitoring

SCWTA partners with the City of Fort Collins, the City of Greeely, the City of Thornton, and Nothern Water to monitor and protect the water quality in the Cache la Poudre River Basin and the CBT system. More information about this program can be found here.