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Alternatives to Building More Dams Essay

Project id 1001278
Subject area Other
Document type Essay
Words 1517
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I was intimidated. In fact, let me be honest, I feared that a thrashing at the hands of the River God. Trembling muscles cautioned me to shoulder my boat and walk. I really couldn't. I traveled all the way from Pennsylvania to run those rivers, how could I back out today? I had to conduct Sunshine Falls...the biggest rapid in the Royal Gorge area of the Arkansas River. So when would I make it back to Colorado to run this lake? I considered that the the portage again; it's an impressive fall with no shame in walking. But what if they dam the Arkansas? I had the pleasure of kayaking roughly fifteen kilometers of the Arkansas river, even in Colorado, this summer. Flowing from the headwaters near Buena Vista, the Arkansas is a tiger river. Only a trickle during the chilly, "The Ark," is reborn every spring with the life bearing waters of fresh mountain biking melt. The greening of river valleys through Colorado occurs throughout the month of June, and traveling in the east I understood how essential the snowmelt waters would be to existence in the western United States. With no water, something that we take for granted even in harsh summers, existence in the west is really a struggle. Now the struggle for the Arkansas starts. Plans to dam the river below the Royal Gorge are all pending. Devastating. I can't imagine the powerful currents of the Arkansas trapped behind an enormous wall of concrete. I find it hard to justify the damming of the Arkansas. It defines recreation for core Colorado. Kayakers, rafters, and anglers flock into the Ark for much of the summer. But, Colorado is a state with rapid population growth. People today need water reservoirs and electricity from somewhere. Should the Arkansas be one of those resources? I now know the ma...

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