By Dillon Thomas

LAKEWOOD, Colo. (CBS4) – Testing has determined that toxic bacteria has been found in the water at Horseshoe Pond at the Bear Creek Greenbelt. Crews are advising people to stay out of the water, and keep their pets from getting in.

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The Bear Creek Greenbelt is located at Yale and Estes in Lakewood. A popular trail runs the length of Yale between Estes and Wadsworth south of downtown Lakewood.

(credit: CBS)

The toxic cyanobacteria, or blue-green algae, has been found in at least three major Colorado lakes – Sloan’s Lake in Denver, Windsor Lake, and Prospect Lake in Colorado Springs. Windsor Lake has since reopened.

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“I noticed about two weeks ago there was a lot of algae, a lot of green. I was waiting for it to clear up,” said Richard Henderson, a frequent visitor to the park.

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Henderson told CBS4’s Dillon Thomas he visits the park almost daily, staying for hours at a time.

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“It’s very quiet,” Henderson said. “I’ve been 20 to 30 years down here. I usually come here every other day. I watch the people, I watch the agriculture, animals, birds, people fishing,”

Signs posted around the property warn visitors to stay out of the water, adding pets can be killed by the toxic algae.

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An estimated time for the algae to be gone was not provided by the city. Officials said they would keep signage posted until the water was deemed safe.

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“I just wish they could find a solution,” Henderson said. “It’s a good little park. It needs to be saved.”

Dillon Thomas