Follow the Updates From the Field!
Learn About the 2011-12 State of the Rockies Rockies Project:
Check out this recently produced video covering the Rockies Project from the summer of 2011, through the 2011-12 academic year. From our tradition of student-faculty collaborative research, to our annual speakers series and conference, to our incredible Source-to-Sea expedition, the Project accomplished many successes in raising awareness about Colorado River Basin issues.
The State of the Rockies Project is in its eleventh year, and seeks to increase public understanding of vital issues affecting the Rockies. All State of the Rockies events are free and open to the public, who are encouraged to join the ongoing discussion of the issues that affect our beautiful yet fragile region.
2013-14 Rockies Project Focus: Large Landscape Conservation
Spine of the Rockies Expedition continues fieldwork tradition of the Project
The Rockies Project has set its sights on a topic of continental scale: Large Landscape Conservation. Read our 2013-14 Project Prospectus here. Developing off the successes of our 2011-2013 focus on the Colorado River Basin, we seek to raise awareness of an increasingly important movement in the conservation community using our Project motto: Research, Report, Engage. Continuing our tradition of student-faculty collaboration, we will investigate conserved lands in the Rocky Mountain region and some of the initiatives underway to encourage conservation on a landscape-scale. Building on the successes of our Source to Sea expedition and last summer's Down the Colorado expedition, we're also headed back into the field to highlight the important work underway through photo and video. Click here to view our 2013 Spine of the Rockies Expedition Description. Additionally, the expedition will be coordinating with the groups in the citizen science community to further awareness of this growing aspect of the science community. The expedition will explore key areas of wild and open spaces in the Rockies: the Tetons-Yellowstone (Wyoming), the Crown of the Continent (Montana), Thompson Divide (Colorado), and the Sangre De Cristo Mountains/San Luis Valley (Colorado).
Map of Spine of the Rockies Expeditions for Summer 2013:
View Spine of the Rockies Routes in a larger map
Release of the Down the Colorado Expedition video series begins Tuesday April 23rd!
We've teamed up with Canoe and Kayak Magazine to release the five video episodes produced from last summer's Down the Colorado Expedition. The video series follows our expedition members from the headwaters of the Colorado River in Rocky Mountain National Park to Lake Powell and Glen Canyon Dam in Arizona. Examining major issues of the river system through interviews with various stakeholders, including farmers, recreatonalists, and politicians, the series seeks to bring a voice to the many people who rely on a healthy Colorado River. Episodes will be released starting April 23rd and will be released every week throughout May.
The 2013 State of the Rockies Report Card has been released!
On April 9th, 2013 we culminated the work of the 2012-13 State of the Rockies Project at our annual conference with the release of this year's Report Card, titled: Water Friendly Futures for the Colorado River Basin. Major sections of the Report Card include investigations of major water use in the basin, such as Agriculture, Municipal and Industrial Use, and Energy. A section covering the 2013 Down the Colorado Expedition also discusses the Project's field work over the last year.
To see more info on this year's Report Card and to download the entire report, or specific sections, click here.
For the third year in a row, the State of the Rockies Project, in conjunction with Lori Weigel, Public Opinion Strategies and Dave Metz, Fairbank, Maslin, Maullin, Metz & Associates, has conducted the annual Conservation in the West Poll. The survey, conducted in six western states, explores bi-partisan opinions in each state and for the six-state region concerning conservation, environment, energy, the role of government, trade-offs with economies, and citizen priorities. Please visit the Conservation in the West Poll site to learn more about the 2013 Poll and to see results from previous year's polling.
*Poll results were released on Thursday February 7th, 2013 at 9:30am MST*
The 2012-13 State of the Rockies Project: Water-Friendly Futures for the Colorado River Basin
Following on the successes of last year's Project and the 2012 State of the Rockies Report Card: The Colorado River Basin- Agenda for Use, Restoration, and Sustainability for the Next Generation, the Project is now well underway in its research for this year's focus: Water-Friendly Futures for the Colorado River Basin. We have put together a great team of summer researchers and are excited to expand on last year's work. Here's our prospectus for the 2012-13 Rockies Project.
Take a look at this brochure covering the 2012 Rockies Project Summer Research trip. Stops included a gas drilling rig in Parachute, Colo., a Palisade, Colo. peach farm using drip irrigation, and St. George, Utah, site of the proposed Lake Powell pipeline. The trip culminated in a seven-day rafting trip through some of the finest desert wilderness in North America, Cataract Canyon in Canyonlands National Park, Utah.
Down the Colorado Expedition
This summer, our Down the Colorado Expedition floated from the headwaters of the Colorado River in Rocky Mountain National Park all the way through the Grand Canyon to document the Upper Basin of the Colorado River.
Arriving at Lake Powell, the team used a craft vastly different from the multitude of houseboats and powerboats that frequent the lake. With the help of Jack's Plastic Welding of Aztec, New Mexico, our explorers set out on a solar raft! Powered by 4 solar panels atop the raft, the expedition motored across the lake using nothing but energy from the sun. (See a photo from the trip below.) With a maximum capacity of 6hp, the electric motor was a stark contrast to the enormous house boats motoring across the lake.
The goal of the expedition was, and continues to be, to create a robust geographical database of ecological quality and stakeholder input. This is being done with the help of two additional conservation organizations. Now that the journey is over and our researchers are hard at work post-processing data and media from this summer, we've been scheduling events to get the word out about our work.
To learn more about the expedition visit: downthecolorado.org.
Rockies Project expedition featured on eTown!
Check out this short film highlighting our expedition managers Will Stauffer-Norris and Zak Podmore on the radioshow eTown recorded in front of a live audience in Boulder, Colo. Learn more about their 2011-12 Source to Sea Expedition.