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for people who care about the West

Skipped issue, HCN: the German edition, visitors and a remembrance

 

After a busy summer, the HCN staff is taking a two-week breather, one of four publishing breaks we take each year. Look for your next issue around Oct. 17.

How do you say cougar in German? HCN associate editor Sarah Gilman's Writers on the Range essay, "Ordinary Wild," about a cougar that wandered into downtown El Paso, was recently picked up by the German-language magazine Aufbau. U.S. editor Andreas Mink tells us that Aufbau was founded in New York City in 1934 by German Jewish refugees, and was once a forum for the likes of Albert Einstein, Thomas Mann and Hannah Arendt. The new headline for Sarah's story: "Ein Puma in El Paso."

Readers - lots of them - come knocking
We had a flurry of visitors as summer wound down. Jason Corzine, the Trust for Public Land Colorado Plateau area director, dropped in on his way back to Denver after helping to complete a new 3.7-mile access trail to Mount Wilson, near Telluride, Colo., which he calls "one of the state's most iconic fourteeners." Hikers can now reach the 14,017-foot summit via the new Rock of Ages Trail. Texas developer Rusty Nichols, a private landowner, had blocked public access to the peak's only non-technical summit route. The Trust purchased key properties in order to build the trail and collaborated with the Forest Service in its construction.

Kati Standefer, a self-described "HCN geek," made a trip from Boulder to Paonia in August to satisfy an ache for small-town atmosphere, finishing her applications for graduate programs in creative writing in our local coffee shop and brewery. She stopped by the office to discuss global population problems and offered a story idea: Boulder is considering localizing its electrical utility.

Molly Moore stopped through on her way from a PR and grant-writing internship with the Canyonlands Field Institute in Moab to go backpacking at Conundrum Hot Springs near Aspen. Molly had plenty of questions about our editorial internships, in part because this fall she starts as associate editor at Appalachian Voices in Boone, N.C., through the Americorps program. Best of luck, Molly!

On their way from Steamboat Springs to Crested Butte to watch the Bicycle Tour of Colorado, Doug and Joanna Karet took a 30-mile detour to tour HCN. Doug is a lawyer specializing in construction litigation, and Joanna teaches online biology courses for the University of Southern California.

Kathy Darrow and her daughter, Brooke Warren, formerly of Crested Butte, were in town visiting friends this August. Brooke, an aspiring photojournalist, is currently studying visual journalism at Western Washington University in Bellingham. Kathy, a Phoenix-based botanist and author, published, Wild about Wildflowers: A Field Guide to Wildflowers of the Southern Rockies, in 2006. She spends her summers in Colorado working for the Rocky Mountain Biological Laboratory. "I get to climb mountains and look at flowers," she says. Not a bad gig.

Betsy and Ben Deleiris and Julie DeVilbiss stopped by, accompanied by their dog, Killer. Betsy, Ben's mother, passed through Paonia, where Ben and Julie live, on her way to the Hopi Reservation in northern Arizona to build straw-bale homes as a volunteer for Red Feather Development Group.

On summer break from his job in Antarctica, Bill McCormick of Silver Plume, Colo., said hello in mid-August. Trained as a mountain guide, Bill works on the U.S. Antarctic program's South Pole Traverse to keep the bottom of the globe stocked with fuel and other supplies. He also keeps an eye on the ground-penetrating radar that detects gaping, tractor-swallowing crevasses along the icy 1,600-kilometer route. Upon finding a crevasse, tractors fill it with snow and continue on their way. Bill picked up an HCN T-shirt to take to the South Pole this winter. Please send a picture, Bill!

Remembering David Getches
In more somber news, on July 5, David Getches, the longtime dean of the University of Colorado law school, died of pancreatic cancer. He was 68. Getches had a distinguished career: He was the founding director of the Native American Rights Fund, spent four years as the head of the Colorado Department of Natural Resources, and first joined the law school faculty in 1979. Tall and slightly gangly, Getches never seemed entirely comfortable in a lawyer's suit, and he was a surprisingly soft-spoken man. He wrote widely about water politics in the West, particularly on the Colorado River, and had a rare ability to balance idealism with the pragmatic realities of the non-academic world. Getches showed that a lawyer can hold as important a place in the ranks of the West's great thinkers as writers, poets and politicians. He will be missed.