• The start of our packrafting trip down the River

    Packrafting research trip on the Escalante River, Utah
    August, 2023
    Glen Canyon on the Colorado River was drowned by Lake Powell starting in the mid-1960s after Glen Canyon dam was built. Before the lake this was an incredible landscape of some of the most beautiful and wild canyons anywhere in the world, largely unknown by the public. With aridification of the Southwest and climate change of the last couple of decades, the lake level has lowered considerably, and these ecosystems - especially the riparian ecosystems that harbor highly unique plant and animal communities in this otherwise arid environment - are starting to recover. My goal with this project is to look at timing of cottonwood and other riparian tree establishment and resilience as lake level has declined. My project is a component of a much larger effort by Seth Arens with the Western Water Assessment at University of Colorado in which he is surveying vegetation response in multiple tributaries of the Colorado River in Glen Canyon. Check out this article with some more details, plus I have some in my photo captions.

  • Marble Canyon!

    Colorado River through the Grand Canyon, 2023
    March 12 to April 1, 2023
    My ninth trip down the Grand Canyon, this time with my two sons and another excellent group of people! Plus such a wonderful time to be in the Canyon, it was so green from our wet winter.

  • Zyla and PMB

    Colorado River through the Grand Canyon, 2021
    December 4, 2021, to January 1, 2022
    My eight trip down the Grand Canyon. No tule boat this time, but my wife was able to come!

  • Tule boat in Marble Canyon (photo by Tom Martin)

    Colorado River through the Grand Canyon, 2020
    December 30, 2020, to January 28, 2021
    My seventh trip down the Grand Canyon. This was an especially memorable trip; I paddled a boat made of tule reeds down the river, a first! This was an experiment thought up by my good friend Tom Martin. The boat was similar to those used by peoples of the lower Colorado River over centuries before European contact, and the question we asked was whether a tule reed boat is robust and capable enough of perhaps having ever been used on a similar trip sometime pre-contact. Find out the answer in the photos! Also check out a video Tom put together on the reasoning behind the trip, and here's an article from the Durango Herald describing the trip and it's larger context. And search for "Grand Canyon tule boat" in Youtube to see some videos of me running several of the rapids!

  • Down canyon from Nankoweep

    Colorado River through the Grand Canyon, 2019
    November 10 to December 8, 2019
    My sixth trip whitewater rafting through the Grand Canyon. A terrific group and wonderful weather.

  • Zion_WC3F1

    Fire History Sampling at Zion National Park
    2014 to 2018
    Some photos and descriptions of sampling fire history and fuels at Zion National Park in southwestern Utah. Such an incredible landscape and location to do some research! I also did a couple of short backpacks in the Park. Results fron the study were published in this paper.

  • P1010061

    Colorado River through the Grand Canyon, 2018
    February 16 to March 16, 2018
    My fifth trip on the River through the Grand Canyon, the best one yet. This report I talk a lot about the tame River and the wild River; the wild River will live again soon.

  • IMG_3661

    Colorado River through the Grand Canyon, 2017
    October 21 to 29, 2017
    My fourth trip rafting the Colorado River through the Grand Canyon, and my first time to do just the top half; I hiked out at Phantom Ranch. This report is mostly some tips and tricks for getting the best experience from a private rafting trip through the Canyon.

  • Upstream from Fossil Camp

    Colorado River through the Grand Canyon, 2016
    December 1 to 26, 2016
    My third trip rafting the Colorado River through the Grand Canyon. We had a great group, and some incredible layover days. I rowed a "bucket boat" this trip, and had a terrific time in the rapids.

  • IMG_6082_3_4_tonemapped

    Fire history in remnant red pine (Pinus resinosa) forests in Wisconsin.
    September, 2016
    My good friend and colleague Jed Meunier and his crew have been finding some incredible fire-scar records in red pine forests over much of Wisconsin. This work will have some profound implications for understanding the historical role of surface fires in these landscapes.

  • IMG_3177_8_9_tonemapped.jpg

    The Third American Dendrochronology Conference (AmeriDendro), Mendoza Argentina
    March 28 to April 1, 2016
    AmeriDendro is held every four years, and my first time back in Mendoza since our last WorldDendro conference here in 2000. It was a fantastic conference, lots of very good talks, and of course a great opportunity to catch up with old friends and make some new ones.

  • IMG_6271_2_3_tonemapped.jpg

    Grand Canyon through the Colorado River, 2014
    September 18 to October 9, 2014
    I had the great pleasure to go down the Colorado River through the Grand Canyon for my second time in 2014, and my first time rowing a boat. Another great group, and several of my oldest buddies along!

  • Rocks and worm tubes

    Grand Canyon through the Colorado River, 2009
    December 20, 2009, to January 13, 2010
    Ever since I was 5 years old I wanted to run the Colorado River through the Grand Canyon, and I finally had my first chance in December 2009. And with my good buddy Tom Martin!

  • (Larger version of header photo; Arches National Park, Utah)