Getting to Know the San Juan River Watershed

Posted by SCC on Tuesday, July 31st, 2012.

This blog post is comprised of excerpts from the Youth Community Corps workbook completed by the Pagosa Springs crew during their “San Juan River Watershed” week. The crew was made up of 12-15 year old youth from Pagosa Springs, and Jacob and Meaghan, two of SCC’s Southwest Interns. Their service project, overseen by Jim Miller, Superintendent of Parks, was the construction of two rock staircases leading from downtown sidewalks to the riverwalk.They also learned about the river’s history, went on a wildlife hike with Brandy Richardson, San Juan National Forest Biologist, and took a tour of Chimney Rock Archaeological Area.

Reflections from Day 1

–Learned names and favorite activities of individuals
–Learned about everyone
–Learned about how the waves got to be here in the River
–Learned about the projects we’ll be doing
–Largest geo-thermal pool, and how lively Pagosa is!
–Dinosaurs can’t swim
–The mother hot spring is over 1,000 ft deep and about 140 degrees F
–Learned that Pagosa has quite a history
–Jim knows everyone! and their moms


What is our service project?

Build rock stairs for the community that we live in.

What needs does the project address?

Decreases travel time between road and river
Beautification of hillside

Day Three: Success Stories vs. Challenging Times


Sitting through the heat (3:24 p.m.)
No afternoon coffee
11:45 a.m….right before lunch time


Overcoming challenging rocks to complete our steps
Watching people walk on our stairs after working so hard!
Finishing the stairs and people being nice doing stairs

What can be discovered about a river by observing
the flora and fauna around it?

To see where, how, and when it flowed!
–See what they ate
–You can see how changes in habitat occur
–Determine what people hunt and gathered

What potential similarities are there between the Ancient 
Puebloan community at Chimney Rock and our own community?

–They made tortillas
–They had places of worship
–They made music
–They hunt
–They make shoes
–They make stuff out of rocks

Reflections on the week

–Working makes me literally very tired.
–I am allergic to work and I like chicken!
–I met a wildlife biologist and I learned that rock steps are awesome
–Everyday I had a great day!
–I learned so much about the San Juan River!!!
–Everyday was hard work
–I had a great time, work was hard but I had fun. Also I feel I would do this more often. Andy=THA BEST
–I feel accomplished

SCC Four Corners’ Youth Community Corps program in Archuleta County was made possible by a grant from the United Way of Southwest Colorado.


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