Writers on the Range 

Restoring the Land Can Feel a Lot Like Fun


Driving back to Colorado State University with a van full of students after a day of working to heal some beat-up land north of Fort Collins, I wondered: Could ecological restoration be a new form of outdoor recreation?

We’d spent the day building a sawbuck fence around a spring. From the spring, gravity would carry the water through a pipe to a stock tank in the middle of the pasture.

On this land protected by a conservation easement, cows would no longer drink, pee, and poop while trampling the spring’s vegetation. The spring could recover while the cattle drank clean water elsewhere....

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