In a quest for economic growth after World War II, John F. Kennedy signed the bill that created Reudi Reservoir diverting water to the Arkansas Valley in order to meet the demand for crop irrigation and municipal expansion.

BASALT REAL ESTATE— A controversial decision that authorized diversion of water from the Upper Fryingpan River and Hunter Creek drainages to southeastern Colorado was made 50 years ago last week. The decision led to the creation of Ruedi Reservoir — which flooded a small settlement but also created a popular flat-water recreation destination. It enhanced gold-medal trout fishing on the lower Fryingpan River but also drastically altered the natural flow of the stream. It provided an important source of water for residents of Colorado Springs and Pueblo, but it leaves less water running through creeks that are the lifeline of wild country in the Upper Fryinpan River basin.
By Scott Condon, August 19, 2012 AT

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Ruedi Dam on the Upper Frying Pan River

Photos courtesy of rwpa.org