In 1997, the Forum developed a volunteer monitoring program to supplement an existing program designed to determine baseline water-quality conditions throughout the Big Thompson watershed. The sampling locations were selected to fill in the gaps from the USGS Cooperative Monitoring Program and included sites in the Big Thompson River, North Fork of the Big Thompson River, Little Thompson River, Fall River, and Glacier Creek.
From 1997 to 2015, the 12 sites were sampled ‘six-eight’ times per year by Forum staff and volunteers trained by the Forum, in partnership with US Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) Region 8. The USEPA Region 8 laboratory in Golden, CO, analyzed 26 water-quality constituents, including nutrients, metals, bacteria, total organic carbon, and major ions. The USEPA Volunteer Monitoring Program was discontinued in late 2015.