by Jay Thompson and Bill Goosmann

This edition of the green line brings to a close the tenure of Alan Carpenter as editor. Perhaps the best tribute to his talents is that two people are now required to replace him. For the past several years, Alan has contributed, corrected, asked nicely, pleaded, and cajoled his way through endless issues of the green line. We, the new editors, will try to fill his shoes as best we can and, as Alan would have it, we now begin our tenure by requesting your help with story ideas, upcoming issues, fully-written articles, anything to help us along as we learn the tricks of the newsletter trade. In the meantime, please take the time to overwhelm Alan’s voice mail and bury his email inbox ( with well-deserved thanks for his years of service as editor. Thanks Alan!
This issue features articles about two of the sites that CRA members visited as part of our recent conference in Alamosa. So even if you missed the field trips, you can learn some of the fascinating history and present day efforts taking place at the Summitville Mine and in the historic Bonanza Mining District. This year’s conference was attended by 81 people, including 13 speakers and field trip leaders. Participants included lots of old friends and several new faces. Our conference theme was “Mining and Riparian Areas”, and speakers addressed a wide range of topics ranging from mining history to restoration of mined areas and reclamation of abandoned mines to mining laws and regulations. It was both an educational and entertaining conference. Inside this issue, you also will learn more about the Rio Oxbow Ranch, recipients of this year’s Excellence in Riparian Management Award.
Our keynote speakers were both informative and entertaining in the informal way that has become a tradition for the CRA. Joe Ryan from the University of Colorado provided a great overview of the legacy left behind by early mining efforts, including some historical insights as to why early mining was a “hit and run” type of activity. Joe also discussed the cooperative efforts of communities to clean up abandoned sites and the obstacles they often encounter. Our evening speaker, Zeke Ward, shared the history of mining in Creede, as well as his personal involvement in the restoration of Willow Creek which flows through Creede. Next time you find yourself in south-central Colorado, be sure to visit Creede and see firsthand the restoration that has taken place.
We look forward to working together with our fellow CRA members to continue to produce green line newsletters that are informative, entertaining, and useful. Please see the box entitled “About the green line” inside the back page and feel free to contact us with articles, story ideas, or suggestions.

Colorado Riparian Association