Ranger Kathryn's Arches

February 22, 2012

A scarce commodity indeed

Filed under: Uncategorized — Kathryn Colestock-Burke @ 9:02 am
Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

Every time I turn on a faucet, I thank the driver of this truck

What is one thing, even more important than the absent Starbucks and gas stations about which visitors ask, that is missing from our mesa top? One thing that, by its lack, explains almost everything about our habitat? One thing that is singularly responsible for this national park looking the way it does?

Hint: it arrives from the sky, but more conveniently in 6,000-gallon trucks. It is stored in two 30,000-gallon buried fiberglass tanks up on the hill behind our housing. It is also currently going missing, to the tune of 900 gallons a day unexplainably disappearing, leaving our maintenance crew checking every valve and meter on the premises. We don’t see any obvious leaks, but our water is not where it should be.

I appreciate the man who delivers this life-giving elixir. Seven times in two days, this water truck has made the 35-mile gradual climb from Moab (4000 ft) to Island in the Sky (6000 ft). That’s some expensive water we drink, flush, wash with, bathe in.

The raven I saw yesterday, drinking from a pothole puddle of melted snow, doesn’t know about our scarcity.


  1. Woa, Is this a recent development? I hope they figure it out. Sounds like a challenging maintenance issue. The wonderfully fluffy frozen water that I carved through the other day was a most awesome expression of H2O in one of it’s more sublime manifestations.

    Comment by midsummerman — February 22, 2012 @ 10:23 am | Reply

  2. Scarce water – hard to imagine with Lake Superior visible from our house. However, our town’s aging infrastructure (100 plus years in many areas) sometimes results in broken water mains and thick red sludge issuing forth from the tap. Seeing crews trying to make repairs on frosty winter nights makes me appreciate the hard work involved in maintaining the water supply.

    Comment by Chris Youngman — February 22, 2012 @ 4:25 pm | Reply

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