I wrote the essay below—about my parents’ farm’s ditch in the North Fork Valley of Western Colorado—in 2018, which was one of the region’s driest years on record. The essay is every bit as pertinent today, an equally dry time for most of the Western Slope, even if some details have changed: My sister owns the farm now—along with the robust water rights—and my parents moved into town. And recent rains have kept most of the ditches flowing in the valley, at least for now.
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