Our wild and scenic Poudre River sings a song and only those who are familiar with her ways can hear the tune. She carries with her a story that, as you can imagine, goes back to the pre-historic days of Fort Collins; back to the nomads who understood how to forage and survive with nothing but skin, stones, bones, and wood to protect themselves from the elements. Thanks to the hard work of the Poudre Heritage Alliance (PHA) and their synergy with Northern Colorado Arapaho Tribal Elders, those songs can still find space to resonate.
PHA has posted three online video interviews (on poudreheritage.org/videos) of current elders that chronicle the symphony of the people, places, and events that shaped the history of Northern Colorado’s first inhabitants. The Arapaho call this their true home. They knew the land and understood even her faintest whispers. Their tribes established sacred grounds and, prior to the 1860s, would gather periodically around a sturdy and distinguishably rugged tree known as The Council Tree located where Boxelder Creek joins the Poudre River. This tree has since burnt down, but QR codes mark the site and provide you the opportunity to experience the music of the river yourself. So come, I invite you to go, listen and remember!