The Kettle River — Black and Blue

The Kettle River was placed at the top of the Outdoor Recreation Council’s BC Endangered Rivers List in 2011. Wanting to know more, I spent some time immersing myself into the watershed. I explored the headwaters and followed its journey to the border. I also wanted to explore seasonal differences – I was looking for the character, the traits of the Kettle River and its water. A diverse system from top to bottom, its’ flows are strongly dependant on snow-melt driven runoff. Wet in the headwaters to desert-like by the Canadian-American border, the river faces classic human-induced challenges. Large scale extractions by agriculture and resort development are in conflict with the ecological balance of the downstream system. So, should development have the right of way?