Larimer County

Erin O'Toole / KUNC

In September 2013, four days of torrential rainfall devastated parts of Colorado’s Front Range, killing nine people and damaging or destroying around 1,800 homes. A number of roads were washed out by floodwaters, stranding thousands of people who had to be helicoptered to safety.


Larimer County commissioners have again delayed their vote on a controversial water pipeline the city of Thornton wants to build north of Fort Collins. The issue has been tabled until December.

Sean Munson/Flickr Creative Commons

More than thirty years ago, the city of Thornton purchased water rights along the Poudre River in Larimer County. Those rights, about 14,000 acre-feet, haven't been tapped for municipal use — until now.

Courtesy of Mental Health Matters Larimer County

The National Institute of Mental Health estimates 1 in 5 adults in the U.S. experience some form of mental illness and 20 percent of children between the ages of 13-18 live with a mental health condition. In Larimer County, 83 people died from suicide in 2016 according to the county coroner’s office.

Luke Runyon / KUNC

An old water cliché tells us that “water flows uphill toward money.” It’s an adage born out of people’s frustrations about who benefits when water moves around in the Western U.S., popularized by author Marc Reisner’s 1986 book, “Cadillac Desert.”

Like all persistent folksy sayings, it’s a mix of myth and truth.

But there’s at least one case where it has some validity: the phenomenon known as “buy and dry” along Colorado’s fast-growing, historically agricultural Front Range.

Courtesy of the City of Fort Collins.

When it opened in 1963, the Larimer County Landfill had plenty of room to hold most of the trash produced by the residents of Estes Park, Fort Collins and Loveland. Its annual input was 50,000 tons per year.

But last year, the landfill swallowed 350,000 tons of garbage.

By 2025, according to projections, it will balloon to 540,000 tons.

Matt Bloom/KUNC

Standing at the edge of the Cache La Poudre River in Fort Collins, Boyd Wright adjusted his sunglasses against the bright sunlight. He pointed to the Fossil Creek ditch, a diversion structure dividing the waterway.

Courtesy, Sources of Strength.

In 2016, a streak of student deaths prompted action within the Thompson School District in Larimer County. As the national conversation around student safety and gun violence grows, officials there are planning to expand a successful suicide and violence prevention program.

Twitter user @therealCsquared

[Updated July 24, 7:55 a.m.] A brush fire near Coyote Ridge Natural Area near Loveland prompted immediate action from the Loveland Fire Authority on Saturday, July 22.

By 7:30 p.m. Sunday, officials estimated the fire at 371 acres and at 95 percent containment. Officials monitored the fire overnight, and will resume suppression efforts Monday morning.

No injuries or damage to structures have been reported. The cause is under investigation. All evacuations and road closures have been lifted, but Coyote Ridge Natural Area remains closed.

Luke Runyon / KUNC

Neighborly disputes are nothing new. There’s the dog next door that poops on your lawn. The house that throws loud backyard parties. The guy down the block who always plows through the stop sign.

But in Colorado, the introduction of legal, home-grown marijuana has elevated tension among neighbors to a whole new level.

Because of gaps in the state constitutional amendments that legalized cultivation of the drug for recreational and medical purposes -- and in the ensuing rules that sought to regulate it further -- some rural pockets in Colorado are seeing large-scale cooperative marijuana grow operations sprout up with little oversight.