Running Dry: A Journey From Source to Sea Down the Colorado River


2 in stock



by Jonathon Waterman

Waterman, whose earlier books illuminate the Arctic, strikes an impressive balance between the personal and the political in chronicling his journey down the Colorado River. Quoting those who have traveled its depths before, such as John Wesley Powell and Wallace Stegner, he writes not only about the river’s now-dying power but also the extensive regulations put in place to control and possess it. And yet as much as this is about the river, Waterman also discusses individuals invested in its survival from biologists to the many watermen and -women whose livelihoods come from navigating its length. The misguided playground of Lake Powell proves to be an unsavory stopping point, but the author perseveres in his search for answers. From Vegas to Mexico, he finds waste and ruin and then turns a corner to discover the fruits of hard-won battles for bird sanctuaries and brilliant uses of drip irrigation. Through it all, he ruminates about the choices between life and death for humankind and rivers. An evocative and bold take on a river and what winning the West really means, Waterman’s book epitomizes the best of environmental writing. –Colleen Mondor