Reservoirs North and East of Greeley
- Weld County
Aliases: Darling Reservoir, Cozzens Lake, Lindies Lake, Briscoe Lake, Howards Lake
Ownership: None Listed
Description: A number of rather widely-scattered ponds can be found in this area. My personal favorite of the bunch is Darling Reservoir, a small private lake with a rocky and marshy shoreline unless water levels are low, in which case shorebirding here can be great. The southern end of the reservoir, along the road, boasts a single-file line of truly impressive mature cottonwoods, with some Russian-olives filling in as undergrowth in places. All the trees are off-limits, but careful and conscientious birders might find some goodies by walking the (exceedingly narrow!) road shoulder.
Cozzens Lake, near the town of Eaton, is an often-empty puddle that can be good for shorebirds.
Lindies Lake is an unspectacular pond with some marshy margins that is perhaps best scanned from the small cul-de-sac at the north end of Vista Lake Drive. You might also scope it from the north, from a very few pullouts along CO 392. It often hosts vast numbers of geese.
Briscoe Lake is rather distant from the road but scannable from the southeast. Its shoreline is part marsh, part rock, and part weedy shrubs, and when water levels are low it may have shorebird potential.
The small, cottonwood-ringed Howards Lake is empty (as of February 2005), but if it fills, it could be scanned adequately from the southeast along CR 70. Shorebirds have been reported from here in the past. Contra DeLorme, CR 70 is no longer a through road past the lake.
A couple of deep, rocky-sided, treeless dugout ponds on the southwest corner of CR 51 and CR 62 1/2 (6250) may be worth checking for geese in the colder months.
Habitat: Pond/Lake/Reservoir, Marsh, Hedgerow/Shelterbelt
Directions: To get to Darling Reservoir, head north from Greeley on US 85 two miles to CR 66 and turn right (east). Darling is on the north side of the road in 3.5 miles. To get to Lindies Lake, continue on CR 66 to CR 51 and turn left (north); Lindies is on the right in about a mile, just before CO 392. To continue from here to Howards Lake, turn right (east) on CO 392 and continue a mile to CR 53, then turn left and go a mile to CR 70 and turn right. Howards Lake is visible through the trees near where the road is closed. To get to Cozzens Lake, from US 85 just south of Eaton, go east on CR 72; the lake (when it exists) is south of 72 a short distance west of CR 41. To get to the ponds at CR 51 x CR 62.50, head east from the US 85 bypass in Greeley on CO 263 five miles to CR 51 and turn left (north). The ponds are one mile north on the left; turn left on 6250 for more scanning opportunities. To get to Briscoe Lake, stay on CO 263 as it merges with CO 37 and follow it as it bends north, then turn right (east) on CR 62. Briscoe Lake is barely visible well to the north of CR 62, about a half mile east of CO 37.