GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. - Due to a reduction in staff and scheduling conflicts, boat inspections aimed towards stopping invasive species at Highline State Park will be adjusting their hours.
Before launching a boat into the waters of the state park officials have to conduct a search to make sure any signs of quagga or zebra mussels are not attached to the boat so it doesn't contaminate the water.
These mussels have the ability to latch on to boats without owners being aware and can affect people in Colorado who use drinking or irrigation water and can clog water pipes.
"These are mussels that we have pulled off from a boat earlier this season. You can see they're pretty large, some of these are quarter sized, but some of these are actually smaller and when mussels are in their infancy stage, they're actually microscopic so anything with water is a threat to our waterways," demonstrated Park Ranger Ashlee Wallace.
Wallace says any boater launching a boat without an inspection is illegal and you can be charged and evicted from the state park if you do so.
The East boat ramp will close for the season on August 12. The West boat ramp will remain open until further notice. Below is a list of the times inspectors are present and boats can launch on the West boat ramp:
August 5 - 19: 5 a.m. - 10 p.m.
August 20 - September 3: 6 a.m. - 10 p.m.
September 4 - 30: 6 a.m. - 9 p.m.
For more information you can contact the park at 970-858-7208.