Gila: The Life And Death Of An American River by Gregory McNamee Online

Gila: The Life And Death Of An American River
Title : Gila: The Life And Death Of An American River
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9780826318428
Language : English
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : None

In this richly documented cautionary tale, Gregory McNamee narrates the natural and human history of this once-great watercourse. For sixty million years, the Gila River (pronounced HEE-luh) flowed through the highlands and deserts of Arizona and New Mexico as one of the preeminent watercourses of what is now the American Southwest. From its source in the ice caves of theIn this richly documented cautionary tale, Gregory McNamee narrates the natural and human history of this once-great watercourse. For sixty million years, the Gila River (pronounced HEE-luh) flowed through the highlands and deserts of Arizona and New Mexico as one of the preeminent watercourses of what is now the American Southwest. From its source in the ice caves of the Mogollon Mountains of New Mexico to its historic confluence with the Colorado River above Yuma, Arizona, the 600-mile Gila - longer than the Delaware and Hudson rivers combined - shaped the ecology of the arid lands surrounding it, serving as a natural highway for a vast array of migrating animal and plant species. But the Gila is now, for at least half of its course, a dead river. Owing to a variety of causes - overgrazing, inappropriate agricultural practices, groundwater overdrafting, damming - the Gila has long since been bled dry, like most of the other major rivers of the West. Where a river once flowed year-round now stands a normally empty bed of sand and rock, and where cultures once flourished along its banks now lie asphalt cities interspersed with dead fields. Gregory McNamee exposes the human folly and arrogance that allows us to condemn rivers - or mountains, or meadows, or seashores - to death, while at the same time he offers a modest program of measures for restoring the river.


Gila: The Life And Death Of An American River Reviews

  • Emily Devenport

    It's easy to get the wrong impression about rivers in Arizona, even if you've lived here for many years. As a desert dweller, you spend so many years on the highway crossing dry river beds that you think every river in Arizona, except for the Colorado, is dry most of the time. Sometimes it takes a geography class to teach you that the story of Arizona rivers is more complicated. That's where I first heard of the Gila River. So when I found this book, my curiosity was piqued.One thing you can't d [...]

  • Chris Michel

    The history portion of this book is great, although hard for me to follow without a map. Although I totally agree with the authors stance on restoring the Gila, without proper citations it was difficult to tell what sections of the book were based on science or merely opinions/observations of the author.