Arizona River Runners provided the setting and equipment. Gloeckler gave us great dancing music, too, and we thank him more than anything for that. We had discussions, lots of them, all well attended. The chow was great. Thank you to everyone who helped in the kitchen. And it was surprising how many different faces circulated through the crowd. There were always 50 or 60 people around. What a turnout! One of the main attractions was the woodstove in the tent, actual heat under the bigtop. Really...warm. No wind, either. What a deal.
At our river access session on Saturday afternoon somebody counted 80 people; actually, 81 were on the grounds when we started. Another way to put it is that the ARR warehouse was just about packed tight. Together we tried to define the salient characteristics of Grand Canyon, the Colorado River, and the Visitor Experience. We sat there for two and a half hours and talked it over and came up with lists, and later priorities, for what was important to us. We called these things values [see inset].
Most folks agreed it was time to tackle the river access issue. But, we learned, it was difficult to group Grand Canyon values. Various duplications and cross references were almost unavoidable. Our next go-round, identifying and prioritizing use issues, will be at the GCRG Spring Meeting in March. Don't miss it. Even if you didn't bother or walked away from this one, be there in the spring for River Access: Part II.
On Sunday we tackled quiet motors. Gloeckler transmogrified from a honkey-tonk musician into a rhinolined, foam padded, technofreak; Yep, he said, every little bit helps. Later, we talked earnestly about a possible experimental flood flow. This turned into a fascinating interchange between scientists and audience. While it’s fair to say there was concern over what a flood might do, not many were completely opposed. Another 2.5 hours on that one. And then, very quickly, we put out the fire and took down the tent before, during and after lots more great lunch from Fritz and Dirk and the gang...and...and...thank you one more time. Goodbye. Whirr. Wizzz. Buzzz. Whew—what a meeting!