Saturday, April 18, 2015

Return To Dolores River

Confluence of the Dolores and the San Miguel.
The Dolores River in southwest Colorado is one of the lonesomest. Which also makes it one of the loveliest. Of course.

Born in the high snow fed mountains of the San Juan Range in southwest Colorado, it empties onto the high and dry Colorado Plateau near the towns of Dolores and then Cortez, Colorado. There it is pretty much choked off by the dam that impounds McPhee Reservoir. 

But below the dam it still has a long way to go before it empties into the Colorado River above Moab in southeast Utah. Having carved a mighty but relatively short gorge, it re-emerges at Bedrock, in the Paradox Valley (appropriate name?). Limping down another impressive canyon, it's rejuvenated by the cold, clear (except for the cow shit along its banks) San Miguel River, a good flyfishing trout steam. Thankfully. Because it still has quite a ways to go, and it surely would rather look better by the time it gets there. 

As I followed it down, I couldn't help but to urge it on. Especially on a clear, crisp high country April Colorado day. 

Dolores River, Colorado.
Photo locations: San Miguel County, Colorado.

© 2015 Stephen J. Krieg

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