Living at Falls Creek Ranch – Helpful Information

Helpful information for ALL FCR residents (new and old)….

New residents: One of our volunteer “Greeters” will be contacting you to deliver vehicle decals, guest tags, member directory, fire route map, and other helpful information. In the meantime, should you have any questions they may be able to assist with, please feel free to contact them at following email address:

  • Peggy Yotti:    peggyyl@sbcglobal.net

  • Jim and Mary Grizzard: grizzards@gmail.com

Vehicle Decals and Guest Vehicle Hang Tags - As per FCR Road Committee Rules, FCR Residents’ vehicles must display an official FCR parking sticker on the front driver’s side windshield. (Please remove if you sell your vehicle). Guest vehicles must display a (green) guest hang-tag when parked anywhere on Common Property. Unmarked vehicles may be towed.

Member Directory – The directory is updated by the FCR Secretary periodically and emailed to all members.

Email – Email is FCR’s primary form of communication for BOD agendas and meeting notices, monthly water billing invoices, annual HOA dues assessments, general announcements and ranch activities. Please make sure you notify the Board Secretary of any email address changes. Also, please be sure to notify the Secretary of any changes in your “away” mailing addresses, phone numbers or other contact info. (Please make sure FCR emails are not being blocked by spam filters)

Mail box and newspaper tube - new residents will need to contact the USPO to be assigned a locked mail box (by the lake). Newspaper tubes will be assigned by the volunteer greeter.

All Residents:

Mailing Payment Checks to FCR- FCR has two separate mailing addresses:

  1. For check processing (monthly Water Usage payments, HOA dues, etc.), use: FCR Check Processing Center, P.O. Box 577, Durango CO 81302
  2. For general correspondence, use: Falls Creek Ranch Association, Inc., 6350 Falls Creek Main, Durango CO 81301

Trash / Dumpsters – located next to the Fire Station. The green dumpsters are for trash and garbage. The blue dumpsters are for single stream (various items in same dumpster) recycling. Please separate trash from recyclables. We have been notified that if blue recycle dumpsters are contaminated, we will lose this service.

ACCEPTABLE for recycling: Magazines, Junk Mail, Office Paper, Phone Books, Brown Paper Bags, Newspapers, Paper Boards, Flattened Cardboard, Plastic Bottles and Containers, Aluminum, Tin and Steel Cans.
NOT ACCEPTABLE for recycling:  Plastic Bags, Food Waste, Garbage, Glass Bottles and Jars, Construction Debris, Tree Limbs, etc..

Trash dumpsters are emptied on Thursday mornings and Recycle Dumpsters on Friday mornings. Please do not leave any trash next to dumpsters. If no room for trash, please take it back home until dumpsters have been emptied. Bear proof lids are installed during the spring and remain in place until the bears hibernate. The lids must be kept down and latched.

Fire Emergency – FCR has a helpful FCR Fire Map available to residents that the “greeter” will provide to you that shows the location of the emergency fire exit route in the event the main road is not useable. (The gate combination lock code is 2020). FCR maintains a very proactive fire prevention environment and is a recognized “Firewise Community”. There is also a lot of great information on the Firewise Southwest Colorado website. Other helpful resources:

Other Helpful Emergency Information - Below are links to helpful information.

Our Water System – FCR has a community water system (lower system and an upper system) that supports our association’s potable water (water that has been approved for human consumption by the State Health Department). The system includes wells, storage tanks, chlorine disinfection facilities, pumps and piping which complies with all State drinking water regulations including testing, disinfection and inspections. The system also includes fire hydrants placed throughout the Ranch. For more information, see Utilities Committee Rules and Regs included in Governing Documents. Potable water is a valuable resource, particularly in high desert mountain environments such as ours. Water conservation practices are expected from all members. To encourage water conservation, FCR has a billing system in place that charges property owners a monthly “base” service fee as well as a monthly “actual usage” fee. NOTE: There have been instances where homeowners have been absent for even a few days, had water leaks and incurred large water usage bills. It is recommended that you turn off your water when leaving home for even a few days. Below are some other helpful links and water conservation tips:

Our Beautiful Lake -  Our 40-acre lake at FCR is one of our greatest assets. Our lake is private property for the exclusive use of Ranch members and their guests only. It is fed by Falls Creek which originates in the mountains high above the Ranch. Members and their guests enjoy year-round use of the lake including swimming, fishing, non-motorized boating, paddle-boarding, ice-skating, cross-country skiing, snowshoeing and just relaxing on the sand beach. The Lake Committee oversees the use and management of the lake. As an in channel diversion, the lake (AKA Turner Reservoir), is fed by Falls Creek. Falls Creek has numerous downstream users with water rights which is managed by the volunteer FCR Lake and Dam Committee.

Fishing – The FCR lake was drained in 2014 to make dam repairs, and in the process we lost some great fishing. However, thanks to efforts by our volunteer Water and Dam Committee which manages the fish stocks, and other volunteers, our lake is being re-stocked with fish and we are participating with the Colorado Parks and Wildlife in a project to create a Native Colorado River Cut Throat fishery in our lake. As part of the interim process the lake has been stocked with three types of sport fish: Black/Largemouth Bass, Rainbow Trout and Native Colorado River Cut Throat. The Black/Largemouth and Rainbow may be caught and kept, however the Cut Throat are “Catch and Release” only. If the Cut Throat project is successful (i.e., the majority of Cut Throat have not been consumed by the bass and rainbows as well as by the lake temperatures), then the plan is to administer a Rotenone treatment to the lake, which will kill all fish in the lake. The next step would then be to re-stock the lake with sufficient numbers of Cut Throat to create a viable Cut Throat fishery. This fishery is part of a four state plan to reintroduce native trout to their historical habitat areas. Once the condition of the introduced Cut Throat is known and a determination is made as to the potential for the long term success of the project, a town hall meeting will be held to explain and discuss the project’s continuance with the membership.

Horse Stables and Pastures -  Horses are welcome at Falls Creek Ranch. A portion of our Common Property has been set aside to stable and pasture a limited number of horses. Horse owners are responsible for maintaining their own animals as well as the facilities and grounds allocated for this activity. A non-refundable fee is required which is used to provide necessary purchases and maintenance of the facilities. All structures remain with the Association as general property. Owners may ride their horses on Ranch roads and and across meadows for access to National Forest Service lands. The FCR Horse Committee oversees the management of the stables, pastures and grazing conditions according to its Board approved rules and regulations. FCR members must apply to the Committee for approval to house their horse on FCR property. For further information, please go to “Contact Us” page, send us an email and we will forward to the Committee Chair for a quick response.

Tennis -  Falls Creek Ranch members can enjoy the use of a tennis court on the Ranch.  A formal Falls Creek Tennis Association manages the maintenance and scheduling of the tennis court. Upkeep of the facility is done via initiation dues and annual dues of full tennis club members.  While the Tennis Association members have priority to reserve use of the court, other FCR members in good standing are allowed use of the court as well.

Weed Control -  FCR is required by the State of Colorado to control undesirable plants and noxious weeds on our property . Accordingly, we have an ongoing program which is managed by the Common Property Committee in collaboration with the La Plata County Extension office which administers the program for the State. Our program complies with the State of Colorado requirements to control weeds and maintains the beauty of our property.

Walking and Hiking Trails -  Falls Creek Ranch members enjoy walking out their front doors into beautiful open meadows and wooded trails that traverse the Ranch Common Property. National forest lands adjoin our Ranch on three sides affording even more walking, hiking, snowshoeing, cross country skiing and bicycling, experiences in a natural setting. Trails include both easy walking trails, as well as, longer, steeper trails leading to waterfalls, mountain views, meadows, aspen forests, and, in spring, wildflowers.

Walking in High MeadowsFCR and High Meadows Ranch have a legal agreement that allows for reciprocal use of our properties for non-motorized recreation. This includes cross-country skiing and snowshoeing in their open meadows – away from sight of homes to protect privacy - and walking in designated areas. FCR members may walk on the HMR main road north to the two-track dirt trail that leads to the northwest up into Tripp Gulch and forest service land, and to the northeast to the HMR fire exit road into Forest Service land. In the event there are locked gates in these areas, we may go through, over or around the gate as long as we stay on the designated road/trail (and of course be careful not to damage fencing). We also may walk the trail along the east ridge through forest service land but are not to cross through HMR resident lots or on their driveways back to the road. We can access the east ridge Forest Service land from the end of Oakcrest or by walking through our north meadow up the hill to the east (staying on FCR property), or walking up the HMR road to their fire exit road. Dogs must be kept leashed while on HMR property. As good neighbors, we ask that all FCR residents abide by and respect our agreement with HMR. Following is a summary of the joint agreement with HMR:

Our Pets and interaction with Wildlife - Falls Creek members have many opportunities for wildlife watching. It is not unusual to watch a mother bear with her cubs munching on acorns and wild berries, deer roaming the entire area eating your garden flowers, turkeys gobbling, bobcats searching for a meal, a coyote walking through a meadow or howling at night, a variety of birds and even an occasional mountain lion tracking a wintering elk in the forest. FCR Covenants require pets to be under voice or leash control by their owners at all times as to not harass or harm wildlife or become hurt themselves.

Living With Our Bears -  Falls Creek Ranch members enjoy an abundance of wild life, most amazing of which are our bears. But, they can cause damage if they get into garages and homes, so to help minimize this, here are some helpful tips:

  1. Metal lids with locking chains are installed each summer on our trash bins. Please don’t leave any trash outside the trash bins, and be sure to lock the chains.
  2. Don’t leave bird feed in accessible bird feeders. This is the first thing they will go after.
  3. Don’t leave trash cans outside. Even if empty they give off a smell.
  4. Don’t leave garage doors open with pet food inside.
  5. Close all windows and doors when you leave your home. A bear can, and will, climb 2 or 3 stories with ease.
  6. Don’t leave BBQs outside unless they are clean – burn them off after each use.
  7. Don’t leave food or garbage in your truck or car.
  8. Bears love to sit in hot tubs. Keep them covered and locked and hope for the best.
  9. Most important, do not make them feel welcomed. Do them a favor and chase them away. Shout, ring a bell, bang a pan. Do not let them feel comfortable around a residence.
  10. Enjoy them, but at a safe distance. This is their home too!

Other Rules and Regs – Be sure to check out other Rules and Regs covering such things as FCR equipment use by members, common property Rules and Regs, winter snow removal and driving guidelines, speed limits, lake usage, Architectural Control Committee rules, etc., all of which can be found on the “Governing Documents” webpage.

History -

Committees and Volunteers – Many of our members volunteer their time to help work on various ranch projects; it is this sense of a community working together that makes living at Falls Creek Ranch so special. See Committees Overview for information on our various committees.