Algae in water prompts precautions

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UPDATE, Aug. 11: The City of Lakewood is improving water quality at Big Soda Lake

Big Soda Lake at Bear Creek Lake Park will be closed to recreation and all water activities on Monday, Aug. 15 and Tuesday, Aug. 16, to perform a peroxide-based algaecide and nutrient reduction treatment. The treatments are approved for use in lakes, and will reduce algae biomass and phosphorus long-term. There are no restrictions to recreation and other water uses after treatment.

Staff will evaluate lake conditions following treatment with reopening anticipated for Wednesday, Aug. 17. Visit Lakewood.org/BCLP for updates. 


Harmful levels of blue-green algae at Big Soda Lake in Bear Creek Lake Park, 15600 W. Morrison Road, will require its closure to swimming beginning Tuesday, Aug. 2, until further notice.

  • Personal paddle craft devices are currently allowed, but paddlers must have  limited contact with the water and rinse their boards immediately following contact.
  • Rocky Mountain Paddleboard is currently closed to rentals of paddleboats, canoes and kayaks.
  • Dogs and other animals should not have any contact with the water.
  • Visitors are welcome to continue to enjoy the rest of the regional park from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m. including the swim beach for shoreline use only, park amenities, picnic shelters, playgrounds and the campground. For more details on park activities and restrictions, visit www.Lakewood.org/BCLP or call 303-697-6159.

Visitors to Bear Creek Reservoir and the Bear Creek Greenbelt should take the precautions listed below because of a blue-green algae bloom in the reservoir and the creek. We recommend not allowing your pets to come in contact with the water. Bear Creek Reservoir remains closed to water contact (swimming is never allowed at any time) but is open to boats, fishing and paddling. We recommend having no contact with the water in the reservoir or Bear Creek at this time. Don’t drink the water, and if any contact occurs with the algae, rinse off, including any gear.

These algae blooms occur during the summer when temperatures remain high for extended periods of time. Blue-green algae is always present in the water, but a bloom means that the growth is excessive and likely producing toxins. Signs have been posted to alert park visitors to the precautions.

Precautions to take during algae blooms

  • No swimming.
  • No pets or children in the water.
  • Do not let pets drink water.
  • Avoid all contact with the water, particularly on hands and faces.
  • Fishing is allowed, but rinse any fish caught with fresh water and discard guts.