Colorado August 15, 2019
This Colorado Lake Was Just Shut Down Because Of Toxic Algae
When it comes to outdoor recreation in Colorado, any of our giant lakes are the best place to be. Whether you plan to swim, boat, fish, or partake in any other water sports, you are sure to find the perfect lake right here in the Centennial State. Sadly, one of the most popular lakes in Colorado is now closed until further notice due to unforeseen and downright toxic circumstances: algae.
If you live in Colorado Springs, there is a good chance you have visited Memorial Park and at least seen the popular Prospect Lake, which is now closed due to high amounts of blue-green algae.
What are blue-green algae? Officially named Cyanobacteria, blue-green algae are a type of bacteria caused by both certain nutrients in the water and ample sunlight. Those two factors combine to form the toxin microcystin, which has a distinct green tint.
How harmful are the algae? Just last week, hundreds of dead fish began to appear around the sides of Prospect Lake, proving the toxin to be just that: toxic.
Meanwhile, in North Carolina, three dogs who were exposed to the same algae were also killed.
According to a press release from the
Colorado Springs Parks, Recreation and Cultural Services, "swimming, bathing, paddle boarding, annual permitted motorized and non-motorized boating of any kind, including water activities like tubing and water skiing" are not permitted at this time; however, fishing is still allowed if anglers properly clean and gut their catch.
Fortunately, cold temperatures and rain will eventually flush out the algae, but in the meantime, the lake is closed to all visitors and their pets (minus anglers in designated fishing areas).
Despite the lake being closed, you can still safely visit and enjoy the surrounding Memorial Park.
You can stay up-to-date on Prospect Lake conditions by visiting the Colorado Springs Parks, Recreation and Cultural Services'
If you are looking for more things to do around Colorado Springs while Prospect Lake is closed, check out
The Affordable Colorado Staycation That Seems Almost Too Good To Be True.