The Arkansas River: from Leadville to Lamar

Celebrating water and life in the Arkansas River basin in Colorado.

Watch the trailer

About the Documentary

The Arkansas River from Leadville to Lamar explores the economic and social importance of the river focusing on its recreational, municipal, and agricultural value. By the year 2050, the population of Colorado is expected to double. But future growth and economic development hinges on a dependable water supply. In response, the State has developed a water plan designed to meet the needs of recreational, municipal and agricultural users. The Arkansas River basin is an important part of that plan, and this documentary and website is designed tp educate and inspire viewers to care for this critically important resource.

Click on the image to the right to play the full documentary.

Learn More About the Arkansas Basin

Click the button below to see additional content related to the documentary program.

Trans-basin Diversions

The history and controversy surrounding trans-basin transfers into the Arkansas River basin is explored more fully in the following section.

Explore the Arkansas Basin

Explore the Arkansas Basin by clicking on the map and then viewing the video while you look around in 360 degrees.

Praise for The Arkansas River: from Leadville to Lamar…

“This is a film I recommend all Coloradans watch. From the stunning landscapes to the wise words from water leaders, the film expertly conveys the complexity of the many issues the Arkansas River Basin – and by extension, the state of Colorado – is working to solve.”

Patricia RettigHead Archivist, Water Resources Archive

“Great film...very well shot, edited and produced - great production values. I learned a lot watching it, both about the river and the people involved.”

Brent Gardner-SmithAspen Journalism

“The Arkansas River: from Leadville to Lamar reveals the beauty of the Arkansas River, from lushly bold to starkly subtle, as it winds across the remarkably diverse landscape of Colorado’s largest watershed. Just as important, it explores the complexities of this hard-working waterway as those whose livelihoods depend upon it talk frankly about their passion for the Arkansas and their concern for its future health.”

Paul FanningPueblo Water

Funding for the documentary was provided by: the Colorado Water Conservation Board; the Public Education, Participation, and Outreach program of the Arkansas Basin roundtable; and the Mass Communications department at Colorado State University – Pueblo. Additional funding for this website was provided by the Robert Hoag Rawlings Foundation.

Website designed and developed by JERBCO

We’d like to hear from you!