The Colorado River basin is the lifeline for much of the American West, and it includes some iconic fly-fishing waters, such as the Green and the Yampa. But years of drought, climate change, and misuse threaten the river’s health, which jeopardizes the wildlife and landscapes of the region, as well as the lifestyles of some 40 million Americans.
To call attention to the issues facing the river and the need for solutions, a diverse group of whitewater rafters, educators, scientists, and artists set out to retrace the steps of the 1869 Colorado River Exploring Expedition led by John Wesley Powell. However, Powell was able to travel through a continuous, natural riparian ecosystem, and this experience is no longer possible, as the system is now separated into two basins, with three major dams, 15 management areas, and over 20 significant laws governing the allocation of Colorado River water. Because of these major differences, the expedition was nota reenactment of the past, but rather a re-envisioning of our future that engages traditional, historic, and contemporary river ecosystem perspectives to derive proactive management strategies, integrating community values, science, and humanities through an analysis of culture, informed management, and traditional ecological knowledge
The film above is a remarkable look at this stunning journey, and you can learn more about the project at the Powell 150 website: Click here.