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Stanton Repeat Photography

Mile 215.3, Above Spanish Bottom, Downstream View from River Left (Stake 3064)

Viewing Cataract Canyon Site 6 of 32 Return to Main Stanton Index

Stake 3064, 31 May 1889 View Larger Image
31 May 1889
This view shows the proposed route of the Denver, Colorado Canon and Pacific Railroad on the left side of the Colorado River at the head of Cataract Canyon. Between the Confluence and Lower Red Lake Canyon in 1947, Harry Aleson, a well-known river runner in the mid-20th century, looked in vain among boulders such as these for a Denis Julien inscription, carved in the early 19th century and mentioned by Frederick Dellenbaugh in his book A Canyon Voyage. Aleson finally found the inscription in 1951 near Lower Red Lake Canyon. The bottomland sustains saltbushes and seepweed, and many of the plants along the river are desert olive and netleaf hackberry. The identity of other foreground plants in this grainy view cannot be discerned.
Photo credit: Franklin A. Nims, 57-RS-67, courtesy of The National Archives

Stake 3064, 3 June 1993 View Larger Image
3 June 1993
Rockfalls dominate the river terraces in much of Cataract Canyon, but nowhere is this as dramatic as just above Spanish Bottom. Nims appeared enamored with the large boulder in the foreground, and thus captured one of the few places that has remained relatively rock-fall free in the last century. However, notice the house-size rock in the mid-ground center that has rolled down since the original photo. Seven persistent shadscale individuals can be seen on the left side of the photograph, and a newly-established hackberry bush appears in the right foreground. The register box for Cataract Canyon river trips is across the river from this camera station.
Photo credit: Robert H. Webb

Stake 3064, 29 July 2010 View Larger Image
29 July 2010
Many of the individual shadscale, four-wing saltbush, and seepweed that were present 17 years before are readily identifiable and persist. The netleaf hackberry have increased in size and cover, particularly the new ones that are now covering once prominent boulders on the right side of the view. Other netleaf hackberry individuals and a few desert olive patches persist. The register box was moved downstream to a point upstream from Spanish Bottom a few years before this match was taken.
Photo credit: Steve Young

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