The Cache la Poudre River and its tributaries flow through the major cities of north central Colorado. In 1986, a major portion of the pristine Cache la Poudre and its south fork were added to the federal Wild and Scenic River system, the first river in Colorado to be included. With its eloquent and often poetic style, Cache la Poudre explains the natural history of the river basin beginning in the tundra of Rocky Mountain National Park and tracing the river eighty miles through several life zones before joining the South Platte just east of Greeley. Arguing convincingly a philosophy of ecological responsibility, the authors tell this story with superb awareness of the balances in nature and the impact of human intrusion. Exquisite detail is paid to plants and animals: descriptions of the complex meanings of birds' songs, the sexual ritual of insects, and the struggles between predators and prey elicit vivid visualisation and an exhilarating sense of discovery.