Sunday, April 02, 2006

The Grand Valley

Taking a short drive today into the Colorado
National Monument gave us a great view of the
Grand Valley. It pretty much stretches from just
west of Fruita to Palisade (about 35 miles long).
It's named the Grand Valley because the Colorado
River, which was once called the Grand River runs
the length of the valley. Just over a hundred
years ago, a number of legislators from Colorado
"hijacked" the name of the river and got Congress
to legally change the name. It was controversial
of course, but anybody who very concerned has been
gone for a very long time now.
In the distance are the Book Cliffs on the left
and the edge of Grand Mesa on the right. Grand
Mesa is the largest flat-topped mountain in the
world. The Book Cliffs, although pretty barren
looking, are home to a lot of wildlife and give
a pretty, but stark background to Grand Junction.
There's a controversial plan by the BLM to auction
off oil and gas drilling leases just north of
Grand Junction, in the Book Cliffs, that would be
visible from the city. Of course people are up in
arms. Personally, I'm taking a wait and see stance.
I doubt it will ever happen.
As you can see, the Grand Valley is very fertile.
However, it is high desert, receiving only
9 inches of rain per year. Once you get outside
of town, it's very dry. The Grand....I mean
Colorado River helps keeps things green and the
city wouldn't be here without it.

No comments: