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Briefs from the San Luis Valley

Brief by Marcia Darnell

San Luis Valley – March 2002 – Colorado Central Magazine


Next season elk hunters will be allowed to kill two animals, as long as one of them is antlerless. It seems the recession affected the number of elk tags sold last year, resulting in too many of the critters left to fight over the food supply. DOW also taketh away, however, banning the use of smokeless powder during muzzleloading season.

City Growth

Alamosa has been growing — geographically, that is. The city has annexed the Stockton addition southwest of town, only months after annexing a parcel immediately west of the city limits. The city is kindly allowing new residents five years to pay to hook up to municipal water and sewer, but insisting on immediately collecting city sales tax.


The Colorado Historical Society has shoveled a $99,985 grant into Engine 169. The Friends of Engine 169 have been trying to restore the steamer, now resting next to the chamber of commerce (in the old depot) on U.S. 160. The total needed to dismantle and restore the old engine is $330,000, say supporters.

Wanted Water

Texas is huntin’ more water this year. The upstream states of the Rio Grande Compact have been asked to release any credits and send more to the Lone Star state. New Mexico is also looking at a water shortage this year, according to water engineer Steve Vandiver.

Watch the Birdie

The Southwestern Willow Flycatcher is living in the Alamosa Wildlife Refuge, and the Valley is a-twitter. The bird is listed on the Endangered Species List, and its confirmation in the Valley leads to questions of what to do to protect it here.

In other wildlife news, the Rio Grande cutthroat is a little safer, thanks to an agreement among Colorado, New Mexico, the Forest Service, several Native American tribes, the Park Service and the BLM.

Slap Shot

Three Alamosa liquor stores will close alcohol sales for three days as punishment for selling to a minor during a police sting operation. The date of the sales attempt was published beforehand in the Valley Courier.

Brief Briefs

In the there’s-a-downside-to-everything department, the recently reopened potato processor in Center closed briefly, due to lack of taters. It seems the prices were so good, Valley farmers had sold out.

The Ski Hi Stampede Committee filed suit against the city of Monte Vista over the city’s violation of the 1981 agreement to support and operate the annual rodeo and its attendant events.

Five of the six SLV counties ranked highest among those having high numbers of uninsured people by the state Coalition for the Medically Underserved.

Alamosa will be the start and end points to Ride the Rockies this year. The 489-mile tour is set for June 16-22. Also in June, Alamosa will play host to the state Wildfire Academy, a sort of summit for firefighters.