Tag: Snake River

Morning photo: Creek light

Stream-side in Summit County

FRISCO —Some frost and snow, morning light and a sparkling creek are the perfect ingredients for winter landscape photography. I definitely got my feet dampened a little for a few of these shots, tromping around the slushy edges of the water, but it’s always worth it. For daily photography updates, follow our Instagram feed, and visit our online gallery for an amazing selection of prints and greeting cards.


Idaho’s sockeye salmon escape the ‘extinction vortex’

Sockeye salmon in a spawning stream in the Pacific Northwest. Photo via Wikimedia and the Creative Commons.

20-year recovery effort showing strong results

Staff Report

FRISCO — After nearly disappearing in swirl of an “extinction vortex,” Snake River sockeye salmon are back and regaining the fitness of their wild ancestors.

“This is a real American endangered species success story,” said Will Stelle, administrator of NOAA Fisheries’ West Coast Region. “With only a handful of remaining fish, biologists brought the best genetic science to bear and the region lent its lasting support. Now there is real potential that this species will be self-sustaining again. The sockeye didn’t give up hope and neither did we.” Continue reading “Idaho’s sockeye salmon escape the ‘extinction vortex’”

Environment: Ongoing cleanup tackles toxic Peru Creek

July 30 site visit gives public a chance to see progress in $3 million remediation project at abandoned mine in Summit County

November snow and ice along the Snake River, in Summit County, Colorado.
Heavy metal pollution from upstream sources has killed most aquatic life in the Snake River, near Keystone, Colorado. bberwyn photo.

Donate to the Rocky Mountain Climate Ranger project

mtnYour contribution to this independent journalism project will be matched dollar for dollar by Beacon. Click to learn more and make a donation.

Staff Report

FRISCO — With recent increases in levels of toxic metals in Peru Creek, the ongoing remediation work at the abandoned Pennsylvania Mine, near Keystone, Colo., takes on an even greater importance in the context of water quality in the Blue River Basin and the Upper Colorado.

The mine, which produced huge amounts of silver 100 years ago, has been pinpointed as one of the main sources of acid mine drainage. Water seeping through the rocky ground trickles into the old mine workings, picks up contaminants along the way, then percolates back into Peru Creek near the head of the beautiful alpine valley.

During the last couple of summers, scientists and engineers have been working to reduce the pollution, and this coming week (July 30) there will be a public field trip to the site, led by Jeff Graves of the Colorado Division of Reclamation Mining and Safety, as well as other members of the Snake River Task Force. Continue reading “Environment: Ongoing cleanup tackles toxic Peru Creek”

Morning photo: Snake River VII

Alpine streams

Near the headwater of Peru Creek, along the Continental Divide.

FRISCO — A little photographic jaunt through one of my favorite Colorado basins, the Snake River drainage, between Keystone and Arapahoe Basin. Summit Voice photography is for sale at our online Fine Art America gallery. Check it! Continue reading “Morning photo: Snake River VII”

Morning photo: Deep greens and blues …

Sunlight, ice, water …

A sunburst sunrise above Deer Creek, in Summit County, Colorado.

FRISCO — A Saturday morning sortie east of Keystone in the Snake River Basin yielded a few more decent images, with dappled and buttery sunlight contrasting with the deep shadows and rich blue-greens of the mountain streams. Continue reading “Morning photo: Deep greens and blues …”

Colorado: Pennsylvania Mine cleanup set to begin

EPA removal action aims to reduce acid mine drainage at polluted site

The ruins of the abandoned Pennsylvania Mine.
USGS and EPA experts sample soils near the Pennsylvania Mine.
USGS and EPA experts sample soils near the Pennsylvania Mine.

By Bob Berwyn

FRISCO — After years of study, state and federal mine reclamation experts say they’re ready to try and reduce the amount of tainted water oozing out of the abandoned Pennsylvania Mine, in Summit County, Colorado.

The old mining site high in the Peru Creek drainage above Keystone has been identified as a key source of toxic heavy metals that impair water quality for miles downstream. Concentrations of lead, cadmium, managanese and especially zinc exceed standards set to protect aquatic life in the stream.

The mine operated between 1879 and 1908, and intermittently through the 1940s, producing gold, silver, lead, copper and zinc. As water and oxygen interact with the highly mineralized rocks, so-called acid mine drainage forms, loading the stream with dissolved heavy metals. Continue reading “Colorado: Pennsylvania Mine cleanup set to begin”

Morning photo: Winter faves

Spring is coming …

A fragile structure of inch-long hoar frost crystals grow in a shady spot along the shoreline of Dillon Reservoir on the north side of the Frisco Peninsula.

FRISCO —There may not be any wildflowers during winter in Summit County, but there’s no shortage of spectacular colors and textures, from gleaming ice to the warm tones of winter sunset and moonrise. With the impending change of seasons, I thought it was a good time to look back and choose a few of the all-time best winter landscapes. If you like what you see, visit our Summit County gallery online at FineArt America, where you can buy high quality prints or greeting cards. They make great gifts, and it’s one of the best ways to support our independent online journalism project.

A December full moon rises over the Continental Divide.
A December full moon rises over the Continental Divide.

Continue reading “Morning photo: Winter faves”