Our goal is to administer, preserve, protect and defend the water rights of our members


The objective of this association shall be to acquire cabin facilities and equipment to enable the association to conserve and administer the stored water owned by the members of this association and to distribute the same in a more equitable and more economical manner to the said owners; to keep and record the amount of water stored by each member annually and to release said waters from any part or portion of the system to each member in proportion to the preservation, conservation, maintenance or increase of said waters by such means as deemed advisable by the Board of Directors, and for the construction of cabins and the acquisition of facilities and equipment and to administer or distribute the water stored by said members to them in an orderly manner for irrigation purposes; to protect and defend the water rights by members, to cooperate with the lawfully constituted water officials in the administration and distribution of said stored water.

In 1879, the state of Colorado established water commissioners through the State Engineer's Office to distribute water rights in priority, based upon principle of "First In Time...First In Right." Flow or decreed water is determined by Colorado water commissioners and added to the reservoir release to creeks, streams and ditches. Water commissioners then distribute water from creeks and streams to private ditches.

You can e-mail your questions to admin@gmwua.com. Questions will be answered to the best of our ability by water administrators, ditch riders, or state engineers. Answers will be posted on the Frequently Asked Questions page for review.


Presently the Grand Mesa Water Users Association has four cabins. The cabins are located at Leon Lake Reservoir, Park Reservoir, Hotel Twin Reservoir, and Granby Reservoir. Our physical office location is 980 West Main Street in Cedaredge, Colorado. We have one employee who is charged with the task of monitoring the seepage of approximately 34 reservoirs on a weekly basis throughout the irrigation season. Two employees work in the office keeping records and taking water orders. One employee turns water in conjunction with three state water commissioners. Given the snow pack and work load, Grand Mesa Water Users Association has also hired between 1 and 4 additional seasonal employees to assist with clearing ice, snow, and debris from the reservoir headgates and roadways into the reservoirs. The water office is open Monday through Friday, 9am to 2pm during the water season. The exact opening date for the water office is dependant upon the snowfall. The office can be open as early as May 1 or as late as mid July. All irrigation water orders shut off October 31 and the office closes.

Water Commissioners Duties

  • Determine stream flows and distribute according to priority
  • Assure water is going to decreed uses without waste
  • Assuring diversions are measured
  • Delivery of water after assessing transit losses
  • Operating exchanges