C-BT Recreation - East Slope

The Colorado-Big Thompson Project's seven East Slope reservoirs and the public lands around them offer many recreational opportunities, including boating, fishing, camping, hiking and winter activities. Northern Water and the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation operate the C-BT Project's collection, distribution and power facilities, while other public agencies manage recreation on and around the reservoirs. 

Find current C-BT Project reservoir water levels in the Water Data section of the website. Find photos of C-BT Projet reservoirs and other features in the Photo Gallery. 
For information about boating, boat ramp locations, hiking trails and camping at Carter Lake, Horsetooth Reservoir, Flatiron Reservoir and Pinewood Reservoir, contact:

Larimer County Department of Natural Resources
Phone: (970) 679-4570
E-mail: cullincj@larimer.org

Carter Lake
Carter Lake Recreation Map

Carter Lake is located seven miles west of Berthoud, CO. The lake has five campgrounds, three boat ramps, numerous picnic areas and a 3-mile trail along its western shoreline.

Pinewood Reservoir
Pinewood Reservoir Recreation Map

Pinewood Reservoir, while relatively small compared to Carter Lake, is a popular boating, fishing and camping area. Located three miles west of Flatiron Reservoir, Pinewood's campground and boat launch are on the reservoir's east side along Larimer County Road 18E. Only wakeless boating is allowed.
 Flatiron ReservoirFlatiron Reservoir Recreation Map

While boating and swimming are not permitted at Flatiron Reservoir, visitors can picnic, camp and fish. Picnic and campground facilities are located on the northwest side of the reservoir, and Flatiron is stocked with rainbow trout during the spring and fall.

Horsetooth ReservoirHorsetooth Reservoir Recreation Map

Horsetooth Reservoir is located in the foothills west of Fort Collins, CO. More than 500,000 people visit each year to fish, boat, camp, picnic and hike. Horsetooth has two campgrounds, three boat launches and more than a dozen camping sites accessible by boat.

Lake Estes, Mary's Lake & East Portal ReservoirLake Estes Recreation Map
Mary's Lake Recreation Map
Phone: (970) 586-2011
E-mail: annie@evrpd.com

The Estes Valley Recreation and Park District manages the recreation for Lake Estes, Mary’s Lake and East Portal Reservoir. Lake Estes offers boat rentals, a boat launch and bicycle rentals from the Lake Estes Marina. A multiuse trail encircles the lake and begins/ends at the Estes Park Convention and Visitors Center.

 View larger map

Mary’s Lake is located in the Roosevelt National Forest along Colorado Highway 7 southwest of Lake Estes. East Portal Reservoir is located at the terminus of Tunnel Road approximately 6 miles southwest of downtown Estes Park, CO. Both Mary's Lake and East Portal Reservoir are just outside of Rocky Mountain National Park boundaries.

The Larimer County Department of Natural Resources operates campgrounds at both Mary's Lake and East Portal Reservoir. Adjacent to the East Portal Reservoir campground is a day-use picnic area with several uncovered picnic tables.

Boulder Reservoir
Boulder Reservoir Recreation Map
City of Boulder
Phone: (303) 413-7200

Nearly 200,000 visitors swim, boat, fish, jog, bicycle and picnic at Boulder Reservoir each year. The reservoir has swim beaches, a boat launch and boat rentals.
Zebra and Quagga Mussels
The Colorado Department of Natural Resources coordinates boat inspections for zebra and quagga mussels. These highly invasive freshwater mollusks have been detected in several C-BT Project lakes and reservoirs.
Zebra and quagga mussels can damage water distribution and recreation facilities by attaching themselves to hard surfaces, such as pipelines and boats. See the Colorado Division of Wildlife's Mandatory Boat Inspections page for the current status of inspection sites and boating restrictions.