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Stanton Repeat Photography

Mile 12.3, Colorado River, Downstream View from River Left (Stake 753)

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Stake 753, 23 December 1889 View Larger Image
23 December 1889
From the same location on a talus slope where he captured an upstream view (Stake 754), Nims took this downstream view overlooking loose boulders in the foreground and a wide, barren sandbar in the distance. Sandbars such as this one created navigational hazards for boatmen plying these waters before flow regulation. Pockets of driftwood are nestled among the boulders, and a crew member lounges near the shore. The vegetation on the slope is likely four-wing saltbush.
Photo credit: Franklin A. Nims, 57-RS-240, courtesy of The National Archives

Stake 753, 11 June 1975 View Larger Image
11 June 1975
This photograph captures the central portion of Nims’ original image; the others have not been cropped down to the same field of view. The foreground has changed dramatically, and none of the same foreground boulders are discernible; only the background indicates the camera station is in the right location. Tamarisk grows densely near the riverbank, and small shrubs, likely four-wing saltbush, are also visible.
Photo credit: Raymond M. Turner

Stake 753, 19 December 1989 View Larger Image
19 December 1989
This image was taken in a slightly different location than the 1975 view, but many of the same plants and boulders are readily identifiable. The leaflessness of the tamarisk permits a glimpse at the sandbar in the distance, which appears to be slightly smaller in area than it was in 1889 but higher in elevation away from the river. Biological soil crust is visible on the foreground slope, as is four-wing saltbush and Mormon tea.
Photo credit: Raymond M. Turner

Stake 753, 21 April 2011 View Larger Image
21 April 2011
Two decades later, many of the foreground tamarisk have died back. Several new netleaf hackberry have become established, and there is a fair amount of vegetation growing on the distant sandbar. The biological soil crust persists, as does some of the Mormon tea; there has been die off and replacement of the four-wing saltbush. Pepperweed and globemallow are now abundant.
Photo credit: Bill Lemke

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