A press release came across my screen Wednesday afternoon announcing that a judge had found that Glen Canyon dam's operating scheme is illegal, since it doesn't do enough to protect endangered fish in the river.
That's putting it mildly.
That dam destroyed the most beautiful, spectacular canyon country on the face of the earth. Or if not destroyed permanently, certainly ruined it for those of us living now and for many generations into the future. The gentle wilderness of Glen was simply unmatched anywhere, its sandstone grottoes and fern draped side canyons. Some of us were lucky enough to have seen it before the waters of what Ed Abbey called "Lake Foul" buried Glen under hundreds of feet of water and began filling it with silt.
It is way past time to remove the dam, or at least empty the reservoir, and let nature begin the process of reclamation. It will take many flash floods to sweep out the extraneous sediment, and years of rain and sun to restore the incredible colors that once decorated the canyons' walls, so there's no time to waste. The water level in the reservoir is way down owing to years of drought, which adds to the argument (see these photos for a glimpse of Glen Canyon's beauty). There's ample storage capacity in other reservoirs along the Colorado River, so now's the time to begin Glen's rebirth.
Long Live Glen Canyon.