KUNC's Colorado Edition: Ain't No River Wide, Orange Or Brown Enough To Keep Me From You

Sep 7, 2018

On this week's Colorado Edition, a tour of ancient forests, struggling rivers and urban jungles - all right here in our state.

Summer is over and most kids are back in school. We asked teachers to tell us what they were doing over the summer break through Curious Colorado. We heard from educators around northern Colorado, including Ben Brown, a sixth-grade science and design thinking teacher in Summit County, who submitted an audio essay about the passion project he turned into a business .

It's been a rough summer for most western rivers. Drought conditions are pervasive throughout the region and in some places are still getting worse. One tributary within the Colorado River watershed has been particularly hard hit on a few fronts over the last few years. As Luke Runyon reports, the Animas River might've finally hit rock bottom .

Walking through forests across the Mountain West, you might not realize you're seeing historical artifacts big enough to crush you. They're giant Ponderosa pine trees whose bark has been peeled off in a special way. Rae Ellen Bichell reports on the mystery these trees pose to archaeologists and the race to solve it before it's too late.

Some of the earliest art in human history features drawings on walls. As an artform, it's had its ups and downs. In Denver, street art is on its way up - way up. Stacy Nick reports on the incredible, colorful pieces decorating walls and alleyways in RiNo .

The Telluride Film Festival took place over last week's Labor Day weekend. Film critic Howie Movshovitz, who teaches film and television at CU Denver, was there. He says the festival was once again like finding gold in the hills .

In the headlines:

  • Construction on the north I-25 express lanes project has begun and the Colorado Department of Transportation says drivers shouldn't worry too much - for now. CDOT will start by permanently closing a minor frontage road between the Budweiser events center and the Highway 392 exit.
  • Almost a quarter of households in rural Colorado lack access to broadband internet. Colorado's broadband office is working with the U.S. Department of Agriculture in seeking input from residents in closing the gap.
  • A new study finds that over the last 100 years, the Colorado River's flow has decreased by more than 15 percent . Most water managers agree that climate change is fundamentally altering how the river functions.
  • Rocky Mountain National Park has a new tool to help reduce carbon emissions - a solar array, built at nearly 12,000 feet above sea level .
  • New research from the University of Colorado Boulder suggests that if global temperatures continue rising, crop yields will fall further than previously predicted because of insect populations growing larger and hungrier.

Our intro music is "Remember Me" by Colorado musician Kalatana. Our outro is "Good Grief" by Ryan Little. Other music this week:

  • "Breakfast with Tiffany" by Broke For Free
  • "Northern Pintail" by Chad Crouch
  • "I'm Down" by JBlanked
  • "Grimwood" by So Far As I Know
  • "Warmed Body" by Peterloo Massacre
  • "Corporate Presentation" and "Green Fields" by Scott Holmes

This episode is hosted and produced by Erin O'Toole and Karlie Huckels. Editors Ashley Jefcoat and Brian Larson contributed to our show. Ashley also manages digital.

KUNC's Colorado Edition is a weekly look at the top stories from our newsroom. It's available every Friday on our website, as well as on  iTunesGoogle PlayStitcher or wherever (RSS) you get your podcasts. You can hear it on the air every Sunday at 9 p.m. on KUNC.