Yampa River – Snow Drawing Project, CO 2016

The Yampa River Snow Drawing was created on frozen Lake Catamount in January 2016. The piece stands in relation to the earlier We Are the Water project. Both of them attempt an abstracted depiction of a flowing stream of water. While the first project focused primarily on the different movements of water – from slow to fast and calm to rugged, from straight to meandering and swirling in gullies – it simplifies the idea of the original river’s actual course.

This follow-up project attempts to mimic the switchback-like meandering course in which the Yampa River once wiggled itself through the valley that is now Lake Catamount – a reservoir lake as a result of Catamount dam, which was completed in 1978.

The piece was created with approximately 50 community participants who all started out together at the actual river’s entry to the lake to zigzag across the lake – in their snowshoes – toward the exit point – close to where the dam is located nowadays. A group of 4 lead-walkers navigated the bend points, with the main group following the course they had traced, and creating many strands of  “flowing water” within this meandering outline.