Living River

The Promise of the Mighty Colorado

  • 192 pages
  • Braided River
  • 978-1-68051-632-6
  • Mar 22, 2023

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2023 National Outdoor Book Award Winner in Nature & the Environment
2023 Foreword INDIES Book of the Year Awards Finalist in Regional Adult Nonfiction
2024 Colorado Book Awards Finalist in Creative Nonfiction

  • Engages and inspires readers on an epic watershed journey that celebrates life, beauty, and resilience
  • The famed Colorado River is the lifeblood of the American West
  • Addresses the antiquated water allocation guidelines that are set to be revised in 2026

With powerful visual storytelling, Living River illustrates how we can create a resilient watershed if we change our relationship with water. Exploring the endangered Colorado River from source to sea, award-winning photographer Dave Showalter provides a deeper understanding of how countless numbers of creatures and 40 million humans depend upon its water and how the futures of all are inextricably linked to the health of the river.

Starting at the headwaters in the Continental Divide, Showalter covers the wide range of issues facing the river and highlights places that demonstrate the land’s resilience, offering hope for the future. Throughout, he weaves in the stories of riverkeepers like Cynthia Wilson, who works to ensure universal access to clean water for her Diné community; Holly Richter, a conservation leader on the San Pedro River; and Tom Koerner, manager of the Seedskadee National Wildlife Refuge.

Living River forms the foundation for a robust impact campaign that will inform and influence stakeholders in the development of a new river compact, one that embraces new technology, conserves and restores our western rivers for wildlife and recreation, and recalibrates water consumption within the Colorado River system.


  • 192 pages
  • Braided River
  • 978-1-68051-632-6
  • Mar 22, 2023

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