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Articles by Alex Hager, KUNC

Alex Hager is KUNC's reporter covering the Colorado River Basin.

Featured Article

Docks and buoys, once floating atop dozens of feet of water, sit stranded on the sand at Bullfrog Marina on April 9, 2023. Dropping water levels have made it harder to operate marinas and docks that are part of Lake Powell's recreation industry, which attracts millions of people each year.

If you want to see the Colorado River change in real time, head to Lake Powell.

At the nation’s second-largest reservoir, water levels recently dipped to the lowest they’ve been since 1968. As the water recedes, a breathtaking landscape of deep red-rock canyons that cradle lush ecosystems and otherworldly arches, caverns and waterfalls is emerging.

On a warm afternoon after the reservoir had dipped to a record low, Jack Stauss walked along a muddy creek bed at the bottom of one of those canyons. He works as the outreach coordinator for Glen Canyon Institute, a conservation nonprofit that campaigns for the draining of the reservoir and highlights the natural beauty of Glen Canyon, which was flooded in the 1960s to create Lake Powell.

“I call this the moon zone,” Stauss said, as his shin-high rubber boots splashed through cold pools and eddies. “There are ecosystems that thrive in these side canyons, even when they’ve been de-watered for just, like, four years. You start to see stuff come back on a really unprecedented... Read more