Colorado Country Life May 2022

Page 1

FORAGING FOR FOOD PG 12 / BATTERIES ARE BOOMING PG 20 / COLORADO COWBOY PG 26

MAY 2022

IRON PATH

TO THE

SKY


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Number 05

Volume 53

May 2022 THE OFFICIAL PUBLICATION OF THE COLORADO RURAL ELECTRIC ASSOCIATION COMMUNICATIONS STAFF Mona Neeley, CCC, Publisher/Editor mneeley@coloradocountrylife.org Cassi Gloe, CCC, Production Manager cgloe@coloradocountrylife.org Kylee Coleman, Editorial/Admin. Assistant kcoleman@coloradocountrylife.org ADVERTISING advertising@coloradocountrylife.org | 720-407-0711 National Advertising Representative, American MainStreet Publications 611 S. Congress Street, Suite 504, Austin, TX 78704 | 800-626-1181 Advertising Standards: Publication of an advertisement in Colorado Country Life does not imply endorsement by any Colorado rural electric cooperative or the Colorado Rural Electric Association. Colorado Country Life (USPS 469-400/ISSN 1090-2503) is published monthly by Colorado Rural Electric Association, 5400 Washington Street, Denver, CO 80216-1731. Periodical postage paid at Denver, Colorado. ©Copyright 2022, Colorado Rural Electric Association. Call for reprint rights. EDITORIAL Denver Corporate Office, 5400 Washington Street, Denver, CO 80216 mneeley@coloradocountrylife.org | 303-455-4111 coloradocountrylife.coop | facebook.com/COCountryLife Pinterest.com/COCountryLife | Instagram.com/cocountrylife Twitter.com/COCountryLife | YouTube.com/COCountryLife1 Editorial opinions published in Colorado Country Life magazine shall pertain to issues affecting rural electric cooperatives, rural communities and citizens. The opinion of CREA is not necessarily that of any particular cooperative or individual. SUBSCRIBERS Report change of address to your local cooperative. Do not send change of address to Colorado Country Life. Cost of subscription for members of participating electric cooperatives is 22.5 cents per month, paid from equity accruing to the member. For nonmembers, a subscription is $10 per year in-state/$16 out-of-state. POSTMASTER Send address changes to Colorado Country Life, 5400 Washington Street, Denver, CO 80216

“Silo Pride” by Donnell Allen, a consumer-member of Mountain View Electric Association.

4 VIEWPOINT 5 LETTERS 6 ASK THE ENERGY EXPERT 7 YOUR CO-OP NEWS 12 RECIPES 14 NEWS CLIPS

16 COVER STORY

CLIMBING AN IRON PATH TO THE SKY

22 GARDENING 24 OUTDOORS 28 MARKETPLACE

MAY 2022

TO THE

SKY

On the

29 YOUR STORIES

Cover

30 DISCOVERIES

A climber at A-Basin’s Via Ferrata, the highest course in North America. Photo by Ian Zinner.

FACEBOOK CHATTER Colorado Rural Electric Association posted: Connecting our communities one line at a time. CREA thanks our lineworkers for their drive to serve that connects us all. #thankalineworker #lineworkerappreciationday

Monthly Contest Be prepared for gardening season! Enter for your chance to win a 26 pack of C-BITEs Garden Clips. These small but mighty clips help keep your plants upright and maximize airflow. For official rules and how to enter, visit our Monthly Contests page at coloradocountrylife.coop.

coloradocountrylife.coop

COCountryLife pinned: Get outdoors and forage for Prickly Pear. It is a terrific dish full of vitamins and minerals. Then try Mark “Merriwether” Vorderbruggen’s Prickly Pear Casserole recipe. Get the recipe on our Pinterest page @cocountrylife.

20 ENERGY CONNECTIONS

26 FOCUS ON

IRON PATH

PINTEREST SNEAK PEEK

INSTAGRAM PIC of the month colorado_electric_cooperatives posted: Electric co-op communicators from across Colorado learned best practices to keep information flowing to crews, co-op members and communities during natural disasters. COLOR ADO COUNTRY LIFE MAY 2022

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VIEWPOINT

ELECTRICAL SAFETY MONTH A time for co-ops to recommit to zero contacts BY KENT SINGER

EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR

T

he Memorial Day weekend is considered by many to be the unofficial start of the summer season. After the last couple of years of COVID confinement, it seems to me that this summer will be especially celebrated. For Colorado’s electric co-ops, the beginning of summer also means the start of construction and maintenance season. While co-op line crews work to keep the lights on year-round, with the longer days and generally better weather, they will be completing even more projects this summer to continue powering communities across Colorado. There’s no sugar-coating it: Electric co-op lineworkers do physically exhausting work in potentially dangerous conditions. You probably don’t think much about the power lines that run down the road, but those lines carry extremely high-voltage electricity. They are potentially deadly. You may have read about what can happen if a person or the vehicle they’re driving contacts power lines: It can be catastrophic. Electric co-op lineworkers are in your community every day working

Safety is always a top priority for Colorado’s lineworkers.

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COLOR ADO COUNTRY LIFE MAY 2022

in proximity to those power lines, either building, fixing, monitoring or planning ways to keep the system working to provide you with the power you depend on. CREA does all it can to support our member electric co-ops when it comes to safe workplace practices. We have a team of safety professionals who help your local co-op line crews stay safe in their daily work. Our team conducts training sessions, makes crew visits, helps with safety meetings, and provides updates on the most recent regulations on safety and other matters. CREA also works with our national trade association, the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association, to develop programs to keep co-op lineworkers safe. One of those programs is called the Commitment to Zero Contacts initiative. This program was initiated in 2018 by NRECA and Federated Rural Electric Insurance Exchange, a company that insures electric co-ops. The purpose of the program is to provide co-op CEOs and other leaders with tools to help them eliminate serious injuries and fatalities due to electrical contacts. One of the key elements of the Commitment to Zero Contacts program is a renewed emphasis on the “life-saving rules” that lineworkers always follow: Use gloves and sleeves; apply proper insulating material; use proper clearance procedures; test lines; and apply personal grounds. In addition to these rules, the program encourages lineworkers to speak up whenever they have a question or concern. It also encourages crews to slow down and do appropriate planning for each job.

KENT SINGER

The first phase of the Commitment to Zero Contacts program has been successful in reducing the overall number of electric contacts, but there are still too many contacts that result in serious injuries or fatalities to electric co-op lineworkers. Recognizing this problem, NRECA and Federated have developed Phase II of the program to help co-ops reassess and adjust their existing safety practices to further reduce the potential for future electrical contacts. Phase II of the program, which is currently being tested around the country, will help co-ops better understand their exposure to contacts and encourage them to adopt additional leading safety practices. This safety awareness job is never done. On the day I finished writing this column, CREA’s safety director notified me that a contract lineworker for one of Colorado’s electric co-ops was being flown to the burn center in Greeley after suffering a serious injury during an electrical contact. Our prayers are with this man and his family; at this writing, the extent of his injuries is not clear. What is clear is that hundreds of lineworkers employed by Colorado’s electric co-ops (and other utilities) go to work every day on your behalf, literally risking life and limb to power your lives. Next time you see one, please give them your thanks. Kent Singer is the executive director of CREA and offers a statewide perspective on issues affecting electric cooperatives. CREA is the trade association for all of Colorado’s 22 electric distribution co-ops and one power supply co-op.


LETTERS

FROM THE EDITOR

Memories of foraging for mushrooms

BY MONA NEELEY

EDITOR

S

earching for ingredients far from the grocery store is the focus of this month’s recipe page [page 12]. Is that something you’ve ever done — tromped through the woods looking for food? So far in life, I have only done that for morel mushrooms. I do love morels sautéed in butter and served with a delicious, medium-rare steak. Nothing better. The only way to get morels is to gather them yourself or know someone willing to share. This is the time of year when the morels are out. If I were back home in Iowa, I would be pulling on my waterproof boots and heading to the groves that are part of what was my grandparents’ land. There, where

elm trees have MONA NEELEY fallen and laid for years, where the grass is thick but the sun shines through, I would walk slowly through those familiar spots where morels, in all their honeycombed, wrinkly glory, hide. It would be a great reason to get out in the woods, to walk through the trees and to enjoy the new growth that comes with a new season—and, if I could spot a mushroom or three, all the better. Mona Neeley is the statewide editor of Colorado Country Life, which is published in coordination with your local electric cooperative. Its goal is to provide information from your local electric co-op to you, its consumer-members.

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In regard to wind turbines, I have had knowledgeable people tell me the following: 1) In its useful lifespan, a wind turbine cannot generate enough electricity to offset the carbon footprints associated with its manufacture, transport and installation. 2) Wind turbines cannot be recycled and are being buried in huge trenches. Care to comment? Mike Powell, Trinidad San Isabel Electric consumer-member

EDITOR’S NOTE: Number 1 is not true. Search for “life cycle assessment” and “wind turbine” on the internet and you can read the research that shows the carbon dioxide, per kilowatthour of electricity generated, is minuscule when compared to the CO2-equivalent per kilowatt-hour attributed to fossil fuel power plants. Read more at nrel.gov/analysis/ life-cycle-assessment.html. Point number 2 has been correct, but with more wind turbines reaching the end of their usefulness, new companies are stepping up and finding ways to recycle the blades. One company is grinding up discarded blades so the material can be used in decking materials, pallets and piping. Another is using shredded turbines to replace raw materials in cement manufacturing. Read more at ecowatch.com/wind-turbinerecycle-repurpose-2650052069.html.

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SEND US YOUR LETTERS Send your letter to the editor to share your thoughts about CCL. To share, visit our Reader Engagement page at coloradocountrylife.coop/ reader-engagement. Mail your letter to Editor Mona Neeley, 5400 Washington St., Denver, CO 80216 or email mneeley@ coloradocountrylife.org. Include name and address. Letters may be edited for length. COLOR ADO COUNTRY LIFE MAY 2022

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COLOR ADO COUNTRY LIFE MAY 2022

BY MIR ANDA BOUTELLE hot home and high energy bills can take away from summer fun. Here are 10 tips to prepare your home for high summer temperatures.

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1. Service your AC unit Air conditioning units work by moving air over fins or coils that contain refrigerant. When the coils or fins get dirty, the unit doesn’t work as well and uses more energy. Get your system ready for summer by cleaning the filter, coils and fins. If you are tackling this yourself, always disconnect power to the unit. Central AC systems have two sets of coils: one inside and one outside. Both should be cleaned annually. If you hire a professional, they can check refrigerant levels during the process.

2. Seal your window AC unit If you have a window or portable AC unit that vents through a window, seal the area between the window sashes. Water heater pipe insulation is a great way to seal this spot.

3. Thermostat settings Keep your thermostat at the highest comfortable temperature to save money. If you aren’t home during the day, increase your thermostat 8 to 10 degrees. There’s no need to cool an empty house.

4. Lock windows After opening your windows at night or in the morning to let in fresh air, ensure your windows are closed and locked. This reduces gaps that allow air to flow through

and cause drafts. If your locks don’t form a tight fit, add weatherstripping.

5. Cook al fresco Keep your home cool or your AC from working overtime by cooking outside. Some grills have an extra burner on the side that lets you do stovetop cooking outside, too.

6. Add insulation Adding insulation can keep your home more comfortable and save energy used by your air conditioning system. As a general rule, if you can see the joists in the floor of your attic, you need more insulation.

7. Turn off gas fireplaces Reducing the amount of heat entering your home can keep it cooler, especially if you don’t have AC. If you have a gas fireplace, your pilot light lets off a small amount of heat into the room. Consider turning it off during summer months. Apply a few of these ideas to your home to help keep you comfortable and provide summer energy savings. Miranda Boutelle is the director of operations and customer engagement at Efficiency Services Group in Oregon, a cooperatively owned energy efficiency company. She also writes on energy efficiency topics for the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association.

LEARN MORE ONLINE Visit coloradocountrylife.coop to learn more ways to help you save on your energy bill this summer. Look under the Energy tab.


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RECIPES

COMBING FOR CUISINE A recent book shares how to live off Colorado’s land BY AMY HIGGINS

| RECIPES@COLOR ADOCOUNTRYLIFE.ORG

Turn your forage finds into a feast

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Visit our Monthly Contests page at coloradocountrylife.coop to find out how to win a copy of The Forager’s Guide to Wild Foods: The North American Edition by Nicole Apelian, Ph.D.

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emarkably, there is an abundance of plants all over Colorado that are not only medicinal in nature, but delicious when prepared correctly. Nicole Apelian, Ph.D., is an herbalist, biologist, survival skills instructor and anthropologist who found magic for managing the symptoms of her multiple sclerosis in eating wild foods. Her book, The Forager’s Guide to Wild Foods, features approximately 300 pages of pickable plants, lichens, mushrooms and seaweeds, and addresses their locales, characteristics, harvesting tips, medicinal uses and more. Apelian shares this recipe from the book. If you try it, share your insights by connecting with us at coloradocountrylife.coop/reader-engagement.

Pickled Burdock Roots 3 1/2 pounds burdock root 4-8 wild onion bulbs 4-8 chili pequin peppers, crushed 3 cups water 1/3 cup canning salt 2 teaspoons dill seed 3 cups vinegar Peel burdock roots and cut into 4 1/2-inch sections, slicing each section into quarters. Into four hot, sterilized pint jars, place 1-2 wild onion bulbs, 1-2 crushed chili pequins, and the burdock root. Bring the water, salt, dill seed and vinegar to a boil. Carefully pour it into jars, up to 1/4 inch from the top. Poke the jars’ contents to release any air bubbles. Wipe threads dry and seal with sterilized lids. Boil jars in water for 15 minutes. Let jars sit 6-8 weeks before opening. Recipe by Mark “Merriwether” Vorderbruggen, Ph.D.; Photo by Heather Barnes

Common Burdock / Common in Colorado Common burdock is widespread in central and north central Colorado, according to Colorado Parks & Wildlife. The weed has sticky, bur-like flowerheads and is sometimes confused with rhubarb.

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COLOR ADO COUNTRY LIFE MAY 2022

Go foraging for Prickly Pear, a cold-tolerant cactus, so you can try the Prickly Pear Casserole from Mark “Merriwether” Vorderbruggen. Get the recipe at coloradocountrylife.coop.

Photo by Heather Barnes


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NEWS CLIPS

Here Comes the Sun Wind Energy Shines

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enewable energy set a major milestone at the end of March when wind power was the second-highest source of electricity in the U.S. for the first time since the Energy Information Administration began gathering the data. On March 29, wind turbines generated over 2,000 gigawatt-hours of electricity, outshining electricity generation by nuclear and coal resources. It trailed natural gas, which was the most relied-on energy source that day.

ELECTRIC CO-OP EXPLORES INNOVATIVE WAY TO GENERATE POWER

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eothermal resources are part of a pilot project established by United Power, an electric co-op headquartered in Brighton, and Transitional Energy, a geothermal developer. The project involves capturing waste geothermal resources from oil and gas operations in United Power’s territory and converting it to electricity. Many oil and gas operators use traditional electric service to power drilling rigs and other pad equipment. United Power and Transitional Energy plan to offer a way to power oil and gas operations with 100% geothermal (renewable) energy. This will allow the oil and gas operations to offset their energy purchases and reduce their greenhouse gas footprint. “Geothermal energy represents a huge untapped renewable resource that can reduce our reliance on power from other traditional sources,” said Dean Hubbuck, United Power’s chief energy resources officer in an article in Co-op News.

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COLOR ADO COUNTRY LIFE MAY 2022

CO-OPS PREPARE FOR THE WORST

H

ow well the electric cooperatives’ mutual aid program would stand up to a national disaster was tested recently in Washington, D.C. Professionals from CREA, which represents Colorado’s 22 electric cooperatives; the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association; the National Association of State Energy Officials; and electric co-ops across the country gathered for the drill. Thirty states were represented as the group examined the co-ops’ mutual assistance network and how it would operate with state energy offices if there were a multi-hazard, multi-regional event. The exercise also gave co-op personnel and the state energy and emergency personnel opportunities to create and build relationships. And it was a chance to learn where systems need to be strengthened. Officials were pleased with how well co-ops work together when facing a disaster.


NEWS CLIPS

Owners of Large Buildings Must Begin Reporting Energy Use by Those Buildings BY CRYSTAL EGELKAMP AND KIM BURKE

O

wn a large building? You may be required to start filing reports on your building’s energy use later

this year. The “Energ y Performance for Buildings” statute (HB21-1286) became law in 2021. This law requires owners of large commercial, multifamily, and public buildings of 50,000 square feet or more to report their whole-building energy use annually to the Colorado Energy Office. The law was passed in response to the state’s Greenhouse Gas Pollution Reduction Roadmap that established near-term strategies to meet the state’s economywide greenhouse gas reduction targets of 50% by 2030 and 90% by 2050. The goal is to help building owners increase energy efficiency, lower energy costs, and decrease greenhouse gas emissions in the building sector. As a result of this legislation, the Colorado Energy Office, working with Touchstone IQ, developed a statewide benchmarking program called Building Performance Colorado. BPC assists

COLOR ADO ENERGY OFFICE

building owners with benchmarking their annual energy use through ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager, a free energy management tool used to track and assess energy consumption. By measuring and tracking energy use in buildings, building owners and tenants can better understand how their building’s energy performance compares to similar buildings and identify opportunities to cut energy waste. The program launched a new website — buildingperformanceco.com — in March. It provides the necessary information around benchmarking, including an overview of the program and information on how to comply. The BPC program and website offer extensive resources, including: • A benchmarking tutorial video series and guides • Live trainings to guide building owners through the benchmarking process • A fully staffed help center to assist building owners with program compliance

Building owners need to submit their 2021 energy use data by December 1, 2022. To find out if your building is covered by the statute, visit buildingperformanceco.com/ benchmarking to learn more. BPC will offer free trainings throughout the year on the benchmarking process and how to comply with the state’s requirements. May and June trainings are as follows: • May 24, 2022 1p.m. MDT: Benchmarking 101 • May 26, 2022 11a.m. MDT: Benchmarking 102 • June 21, 2022 11a.m. MDT: Benchmarking 101 • June 23, 2022 1p.m. MDT: Benchmarking 102 Visit buildingperformanceco.com help to learn more or to register for a future training. If you have any questions on whether or not these requirements pertain to you or you need information on how to comply with Colorado’s benchmarking requirements, call 888-513-0353 or email benchmarking@ buildingperformanceco.com.

BuildingLocal with authorized builders all across Colorado

CONGR ATS Julie Sauter of Greeley won a SodaPup Enrichment Lick Mat in last month’s contest. Julie is a consumer-member of Poudre Valley REA.

visit www.heritagehomesofne.com or call 877-759-2782 COLOR ADO COUNTRY LIFE MAY 2022

15


CLIMBING AN IRON PATH TO THE SKY

photo by Ian Zinner

COVER STORY

BY JOANNE PALMER

O

n a sunny morning in late March, I find myself flattened against a granite rock slab at the Royal Gorge, wondering what to do next. I need to go up, to advance toward the summit but I am frozen in fear. One foot is on a rung, one hand is on steel cable, but to get to the next point requires finding a natural hand and foothold on the relentless rock. Let me be clear: I am not a rock climber. I hike, bike and play pickleball—all sports that are on or close to the ground and afford the opportunity to quit and go home at any time. But now I must move, I must climb, I must live up to the magnet on my refrigerator door that states, “Do one thing every day that scares you.” Done and done. And on I go. Below is my partner, Evan, who has valiantly agreed to accompany me on this adventure. Above, Marquette, our guide. Marquette is the best. He has given us detailed instructions: clip in here, put a foot

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COLOR ADO COUNTRY LIFE MAY 2022

there, grasp a handhold. It looked easy, like a dance step. But now I struggle to follow his lead. I refuse to look behind me as I already know what is there: a steep, unforgiving drop. My Spidey senses are tingling, my heart is thudding and the phrase “Get a grip” takes on new meaning. Birds are singing, but their song is drowned out by my incessant self-talk. “You’re too old,” “You’re gonna fall,” and the loudest of all, “Why aren’t you home in your recliner, watching ‘Jeopardy?’” This is the Via Ferrata. The Via Ferrata literally means Iron Way or Iron Path in Italian. In English, I loosely translate it to mean, “Crazy things I thought I could do while sitting in my living room.” The origins of the Via (refer to it this way if you want to sound cool) are in fact, very cool. It was the ingenious solution to the improbable task of transporting equipment and soldiers through the Alps during World

Writer Joanne Palmer (left photo) makes her way up the path as others (above) celebrate a summit.

War I. These enterprising, hard-working soldiers hammered steel cables, rungs and ladders into the rocks, creating a stairway of sorts through the Alps. Long popular in Europe, the Via Ferrata is relatively new to Colorado and quickly gaining popularity as the state’s newest adrenaline-fueled sport. As Mark Iuppenlatz, owner/director of San Juan Mountain Guides, puts it, “In Ouray, we hit our four-year goal in the first year. It allows people to experience rock climbing safely without having technical ability.” Although there are seven Via Ferratas in Colorado, only one is open year round, which is how we find ourselves in Cañon City at the Royal Gorge. “You’re doing great,” Marquette calls encouragingly. Yeah, right. Rock is momentarily a fourletter word in my vocabulary.


COVER STORY “It’s easier if you get vertical. You can lean back and walk right up the rock.” Uh-huh. So not happening. My derring-do has been reduced to just, “DO.” Marquette is right, of course. We have what it takes to do it. The issue is not the equipment. We have been outfitted with sticky-soled shoes that help provide traction on the rock. The climbing harness has not one but two carabiners with lanyards that attach, leash like, to a steel cable. The issue is trust. Trust the equipment. Trust the guide. Get a grip. I find a foothold. Deep breath. I find a handhold. Deep breath. I hug the rock…and slowly inch up. It’s been a long time since I’ve challenged myself. It’s been an even longer time since I’ve done anything outside my comfort zone. The pandemic has offered a perfect excuse to stay put, walk the dog, not clean my closet and aspire to be the next “Jeopardy” champion. I can hear Ken Jennings now, “What is (dramatic pause) an age-appropriate pastime for a woman in her late 60s with a new knee?” The correct answer? Bingo! With my face inches away from the rock slab, I ignore the negative chattering and focus on the process. Using one hand, I open the gate of the carabiner and clip on the metal climbing rope. Open, clip, repeat. Open, clip, repeat. The sun glints off the metal and I continue to move cautiously up. Unlike other sports, the Via Ferrata is both psychologically and physically challenging. It somehow shines an unforgiving light on all fears, both real and imagined. As Todd Rutledge, co-owner of Mountain Trip in Telluride, puts it, “It is Ages 12 and older can make their way along the iron path with the help of a guide.

regularly an emotional journey as it is categorically different from anything else in life.” After completing the Ouray Via Ferrata, retired school counselor Lou Hart, 67, of Ouray concurs. “I was telling myself, ‘I can do this,’ the whole way through. At the end, I was so elated I was crying — it was such a feeling of accomplishment.” Dawn Glanc, head ranger of the Ouray Via Ferrata, says, “It’s cool to see people go from being terrified to so confident that they come back to do it with their friends.” Marquette calls encouragingly, “You’re almost at the top.” Click, clack. I focus on the sound of the carabiners snapping on and off the cable. Click, clack. I keep my head down and concentrate only on the next step, not the summit. This singular focus helps ease my worries and soon I am standing next to Marquette at the top. Marquette reassures me my fears are normal: “The Via Ferrata challenges you to conquer all that scares you. It is about conquering fears, fear of heights, fear of trying something new and fear of falling, and then finding the courage to do it anyway.” Roger that! At the summit, an “oh wow” moment awaits. Mother Nature has outdone herself. Almost 1,000 feet below, the mighty Arkansas River has carved a channel, a smile-like split, through the rock: nature’s reminder that any and all things are possible. Standing at the top, I feel like a speck on the planet, just a small part of what makes the surrounding landscape so beautiful. Equally impressive is the Royal Gorge Bridge, an engineering phenomenon that spans the gorge like a sparkling clothesline.

Constructed in 1929, it is a striking testament to mankind’s ability to see past obstacles and overcome the impossible. And that, right now, is an important reminder for me. Evan and I exchange a celebratory hug, elated we have accomplished it together. If you decide you are ready for Colorado’s newest pulse-pounding adventure, there are seven Via Ferratas scattered across the state to choose from. “It is the perfect introduction to Colorado culture,” Marquette says. “It offers views, hiking and the outdoors. You’re not looking at the mountains, you are right up against them.” KNOW BEFORE YOU GO Typically open May–October, most Via Ferrata courses are two to three hours and require individuals to be in reasonable physical shape. Iuppenlatz advises, “Participants should be able to climb a two-story ladder and walk a mile in the mountains to be able to participate.” While two courses, Telluride and Ouray, are free and open to the public, it is strongly recommended that first-timers hire a guide. If you are new to rock climbing, or unsure about your ability to complete the course, call ahead and find out if there is an early exit. Guided tour prices start at $99 and go up depending on location and number of participants. Call to confirm pricing and availability and to make reservations. If your kids are 12 and older, the Via Ferrata is sure to be at least as thrilling as their latest video game and a new cliffside family adventure. Older folks like, ahem, me, shouldn’t rule it out. The oldest known participant I found is Charlie Winger, 85, of Montrose who regularly climbs the Ouray

photo courtesy of Ouray Via Ferrata


COVER STORY Via Ferrata twice a week in the summer. Winger says, “The beginning really gets your attention. It’s one single strand of wire, suspended above a roaring stream. Imagine walking on a clothesline.” Dress in loose layers to accommodate changes in weather and preferably long shorts or pants that cover your knees. Lightweight, closed-toe hiking shoes are advised.

IDAHO SPRINGS A triple treat! This tour combines Via Ferrata with a zip line, 70-foot rappel and a 50-foot free fall. Three-hour tours transport adven­turers over Idaho Springs and Chicago Creek. BUENA VISTA Run by the same company as Idaho Springs, Buena Vista offers the same thrilling combination of zip line, free fall and rappel against the backdrop of the Collegiate Peaks and Arkansas River.

TELLURIDE If you have rock-climbing experience and your own gear, the Telluride Via Ferrata is for you. While this course is free and open to the public, the majority of the route is not cabled, which means climbers are not clipped in. First-timers should definitely hire a guide.

Christmas Wharton and friends prepare to climb one of Ouray’s courses. Photo courtesy of Christmas Wharton.

A climber makes his way up the mountain at A-Basin. Photo by Ian Zinner.

A-BASIN If you want bragging rights to the highest Via Ferrata in North America, this one’s for you. It just may be the closest you can get to a bird’s eye view without sprouting wings. Because of the elevation, this is a strenuous climb. The access hike and climb take place entirely above treeline, between 12,000 and 13,000 feet. The full-day tour climbs 1,200 feet to a 13,000-foot summit. Half-day tours are also available. Reservations required. Clipping in keeps climbers safe. Photo by Ian Zinner.

Writer Joanne Palmer and partner Evan make the summit.

ROYAL GORGE Participants hike down the Grand Traverse, a maintained trail that leads to the start of the 3-hour Revelation Tour or the 5-hour Royal Tour. Prices include general admission to the Royal Gorge Bridge & Park. Shoes, gear, and guide provided.

OURAY Ouray, the self-proclaimed, “outdoor recreation capital of Colorado,” lives up to its moniker with not one but two Via Ferrata courses in the Uncompahgre Gorge. This summer, visitors can choose between the original route or the new upstream route featuring a heilical ladder, which spins the climber in a circle, and “Leap of Faith,” which requires a short jump from one platform to the next. Free and open to the public. ESTES PARK Here you will find two Via Ferratas. The first, easier route is called the Peregrine Ridge. It follows a natural path up the rock with lots of places to hold onto and is a great introductory Via Ferrata. The newer route, The Cloud Ladder, is much steeper. Two sky bridges bring you to the midpoint where the routes meet up and finish together. Joanne Palmer, who now has her feet back on solid ground, is a freelance writer from Colorado’s Western Slope.

A climber with Kent Mountain Adventure Center, Estes Park. Photo by Reed Woodford.

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COVER STORY

“It’s cool to see people go from being terrified to so confident that they come back to do it with their friends.” — Dawn Glanc, head ranger of the Ouray Via Ferrata

Caption

COLOR ADO COUNTRY LIFE MAY 2022

19


ENERGY CONNECTIONS

Batteries Are Booming From EVs to solar energy, innovations in energy storage are changing the game BY PAUL WESSLUND AND AMY HIGGINS

I

f your smartphone battery has become a large share of your daily thoughts, just wait — the battery market is booming. Innovators are now developing washable and bendable batteries to heat your gloves or be sewn into athletic wear to help track your exercise routine. Electric utilities are using batteries for slightly more practical reasons — to make electricity more reliable and more compatible with renewable energy sources. Also, the booming electric vehicle market is made possible by dramatic advancements in battery technology. Analysts estimate the world battery market value at more than $100 billion and project it will grow more than 10% annually over the next five years. People need batteries for their phones, laptops, power tools, watches, EVs and more, and they want them to last longer. They want them smaller. They want them cheaper. And researchers and entrepreneurs are busy meeting those demands.

EVs Elevated EVs, which run on large, rechargeable batteries, are a leading example of the trend. Ten years ago there were hardly any

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EVs on the road, but in 2020 EV sales hit 3 million and now there are 10 million on the road worldwide. That growth is expected to continue. Six of this year’s February Super Bowl ads featured EVs, and manufacturers around the world plan to spend more than half a trillion dollars on EVs and batteries in the next eight years. In the U.S. alone, 13 EV battery manufacturing plants are expected to open in the next five years. The battery bandwagon brings strong incentives for investments to make batteries even stronger so EVs can go farther and phones can hold more apps and feature fancier cameras. This cycle of innovation is cutting battery costs, too. The price of the most popular type of rechargeable battery is down more than 90% from what it was 10 years ago. Taking EVs to a new level is La Plata Electric Association in Durango, which revealed Colorado’s first vehicle-to-grid EV school bus in December 2021. The electric-powered bus houses a battery that can travel up to 200 miles on a full charge, but the battery can also store energy that in turn can be used for LPEA to draw power from during peak energy hours.

“When fully charged, the bus stores enough electricity to power 30 average single-family homes, or 100 energy-efficient homes, for a few hours,” according to an LPEA press release.

Batteries aid renewable energy use Utility use of large batteries is adding efficiency and reliability to the nation’s electric grid. In 2019, the number of large-scale battery systems in the U.S. increased 28%. For Colorado’s electric cooperatives, large-scale batteries started in 2018. With peak shaving and innovation in mind, Brighton-based United Power went live with its Tesla battery storage facility, which, the co-op touts, can store enough energy to power up to 700 homes simultaneously. Utilities, including electric cooperatives, use these batteries in several ways. They can smooth out voltage and frequency differences that damage equipment and affect power quality. Batteries can also make better use of the intermittent nature of renewable energy sources. By storing excess solar energy produced during the day when electric demand is low, batteries can make that sun power available for use at night when electric demand is high.


ENERGY CONNECTIONS Utility use of large battery systems, such as the Tesla Megapack shown here, is adding efficiency and reliability to the nation’s electric grid. Photo Source: Tesla

Utility-scale battery capacity tripled in the past five years, including 35% in 2020 alone. The U.S. Energy Information Administration reports electric utilities will have 10 times the battery capacity in 2023 that they had in 2019. Much of that increase, the EIA says, comes from battery systems located near large solar projects, making it easier to store electricity produced by solar panels. One especially innovative use of batteries came in 2020 when a heat wave strained California’s electric supply. The state’s energy manager asked businesses and homeowners with batteries to supply emergency power. More than 30,000 responded, including backup power owners and EV charging providers. With the assistance of its 140-kilowatt, 446-kilowatt-hour Tesla Powerpack battery, Fort Collins-based Poudre Valley Rural Electric Association’s Red Feather Lakes microgrid can provide electricity to its consumer-members for up to 8 hours during power interruptions. Holy Cross Energy in Glenwood Springs is working on a solar and battery energy storage project with Ameresco, an organization that specializes in energy efficiency

and renewable energy, to install 4.5 megawatts of solar power and 15 megawatt-hours of battery energy storage. This clean technology will be housed at Colorado Mountain College’s Spring Valley Campus leased by Ameresco, which will then sell the power generated to HCE, assisting HCE with its goal of 100% renewable energy resources by 2030. Homeowners can even supplement their electric service with their own backup

batteries. Tesla and other companies make suitcase-sized batteries designed to hang on a wall for reserve power in case of a storm or to pair with rooftop solar panels to store sun power for later use. United Power offers this service to its consumer-members, allowing them to connect their personal battery storage system to the electric co-op’s distribution system. Innovators are also working on new types of batteries for everyday use. Low-cost, flexible power sources could be part of clothing or wristbands. Wearable electronics are a hot market, and innovators and investors see the potential. Whether used for making electricity more reliable or to create some fun new gadget, battery technology will continue to boom. Paul Wesslund writes on consumer and cooperative affairs for the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association. Amy Higgins writes electric co-op news for CREA.

Manufacturers around the world plan to spend more than half a trillion dollars on electric vehicles and batteries in the next eight years. The Kansas City Assembly Plant shown here is Ford’s first U.S. plant to assemble both batteries and EVs. Photo Source: Ford

COLOR ADO COUNTRY LIFE MAY 2022

21


GARDENING

Garden Greens Grow them effortlessly and add flavor to your meals all summer long BY VICKI SPENCER

MASTER GARDENER | GARDENING@COLOR ADOCOUNTRYLIFE .ORG

W

hat comes to mind when you think of garden greens? Do you think of delicately flavored Simpson lettuce, a favorite for over 150 years? Do you consider the many options advertised in seed catalogues? Do you prefer romaine lettuce, spinach, arugula or kale? Should you plant greens for other culinary uses like soup, pasta and garnishes? Each year I traditionally planted the same leaf lettuce and spinach that my mother grew so effortlessly. Only after participating in a neighborhood garden tour did I experiment with other greens. To my surprise, a local garden center brought trays of starter plants to one of the tour sites to give away. Not wanting to be greedy, I asked if I could take two plants. To my delight, the representative encouraged me to try all the different greens and take as many as I wanted. I had just built a planter box around a large deck and the timing was perfect. Although I had planted flower bulbs, they would take time to emerge. Meanwhile, the greens would immediately add color. I selected five different kale plants (Russian, dwarf Siberian, purple, big leaf, blue); three lettuce plants (green leaf, red leaf, butter); and arugula, spinach and endive. I had never cooked with kale but

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had enjoyed it in my daughter’s cooking, so I decided to give it a try. Besides, if my culinary skills failed, the unique kale leaves would be lovely in the planter. The greens flourished, flavored my meals all summer and provided a host of nutrients, including vitamins A, B, C, and K and potassium. Kale is very hardy and the plants survived winter in a well-protected location. Select greens based on your taste and nutrient preferences. Arugula, with its peppery taste, contains the most calcium, along with vitamins A, C, K and manganese, which protects bones. Substitute arugula for spinach in salads or add to pasta and soups. Kale is amazingly versatile. Add it to salads, braise for side dishes, blend into smoothies, or spray with olive oil and a dash of salt before roasting into chips. Dandelion greens and escarole are bitter compared to iceberg lettuce but are known for detoxification qualities. Mix with other greens or blanch with olive oil and lemon juice to cut the bitterness. Kale, turnip, mustard and collard are members of the cabbage family. Collard greens are essential for plant-based diets as they provide protein, calcium and cancerpreventing B6. Collard is tolerant of extreme heat and cold but gets more bitter in the heat.

Swiss chard, a member of the beet family, has grown in popularity as a leafy green. It is best cooked and contains antioxidants, iron, carotenoids that protect eyes against UV rays, and folate needed for healthy pregnancies. Bok choy, a cruciferous green delicious in stir fry dishes and soups, has antioxidants and selenium which aids cognitive function, thyroid function, metabolism and immunity. Greens are best grown in a cool spring or late fall garden and do best in full sun and moist soil. Harvesting leaves regularly will encourage fresh growth. Regardless of your selection, these things are certain: You can grow a wider variety than you’ll find at the grocery store, and homegrown greens will taste much better and have more nutrients when picked right before eating. Gardener Vicki Spencer has an eclectic background in conservation, water, natural resources and more.

LEARN MORE ONLINE Read previous gardening columns at coloradocountrylife.coop. Click on Gardening under Living in Colorado.


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In 2013, scientists announced a pill that facilitates weight loss in the abdomen. It contains a combination of ingredients shown to enhance the metabolism’s ability to burn belly fat. Since then, it has become a popular diet pill in France and Germany. Sales continue to climb as new people discover how well the product works. Michael Kenneth, President of the Applied Scientific Research Center is not surprised by the popularity. He says, “The pill is safe. It’s effective. It works fast. Plus, it costs less than a cup of coffee per day.” “And now, we’re making it available in America under the new brand name OxiTrim. We can’t wait to receive feedback from first time users. We know dieters are going to love this pill,” he added.

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The active ingredients in OxiTrim trigger weight loss in a way scientists have not seen before. Research shows they activate a protein in the body that breaks down fatty acids found in abdominal fat. “You can think of OxiTrim as a match that lights the fuse in belly fat,” said Kenneth. “This fuse effects metabolic rate which results in enhanced fat loss around the mid section and other parts of the body, too.” Kenneth also said, “Dieters should know OxiTrim is made from natural plant extracts. It is not a drug. It does not contain any stimulants or dangerous chemicals either.” “Plus, unlike a lot of other diet pills, OxiTrim won’t increase your heart rate or make you anxious. In fact, you won’t even know you’re taking it until you begin to see a slimmer waistline,” he added.

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Sales Frenzy: The newly released OxiTrim pill from France is set to break sales records nationwide this week. In clinical studies, users taking the pill’s active ingredients lost up to 5 inches from their waistline in 8 weeks without strict dieting.

breakthrough in natural weight loss to date. It’s a proven pill for men and women who want to cut pounds of belly fat.” — Dr. M. Usman, M.D. “I have reviewed the research and have decided to recommend OxiTrim to overweight people. That’s because OxiTrim doesn’t just reduce weight, it helps maintain healthy cholesterol and triglyceride levels, too.” — Dr. Ahmad Alsayes.

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Amazing feedback from users of OxiTrim has generated a wave of confidence at the company. So much so that they now offer OxiTrim with a 110% money back guarantee. The company’s president, Michael Kenneth says, “We’ve seen how well it works. Now we want to remove any risk for those who might think OxiTrim sounds too good to be true.” Simply take the pill exactly as directed. You must enjoy fast and impressive weight loss. Otherwise, return the product as directed and you’ll receive 100% of your money back plus an extra 10%.

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Today marks the official nationwide release of OxiTrim in America. And so, the company is offering a special discount supply to every person who calls before inventory runs out. A Regional Order Hotline has been setup for local readers to call. This gives everyone an equal chance to try OxiTrim. The Order Hotline is now open. All you have to do is call TOLL FREE 1-888-3080193 Then provide the operator with the special discount approval code: OTN22. The company will do the rest. Initial supplies of OxiTrim are limited. Those who don’t call soon may have to wait until more inventory is produced. This could take as long as 6 six weeks.

THESE STATEMENTS HAVE NOT BEEN EVALUATED BY THE FOOD AND DRUG ADMINISTRATION. THIS PRODUCT IS NOT INTENDED TO DIAGNOSE, TREAT, CURE OR PREVENT ANY DISEASE. ALL DOCTORS MENTIONED ARE REMUNERATED FOR THEIR SERVICES. ALL CLINICAL STUDIES ON OXITRIM’S ACTIVE INGREDIENT WERE INDEPENDENTLY CONDUCTED AND WERE NOT SPONSORED BY THE MAKERS OF OXITRIM.


OUTDOORS

ONE MORE CAST

COULD BE DEADLY

Don’t become part of a tragic fishing story. Keep an eye on weather conditions and know when to call it a day.

SEEK SHELTER If you see or hear signs of weather rolling in, stop and head to a four-sided building or hard-top car.

WAIT 30 MINUTES Wait 30 minutes after you see or hear lightning before heading back outside.

REMEMBER Always look up for overhead power lines before casting.

LIGHTNING FACTS 2006 - 2020:

Two-thirds of lightning deaths occurred during outdoors activities.

33% Of those deaths, 33% happened during water-related activities.

44%

Fishing accounted for most, or 44% of those water-related activities. Source: National Lightning Safety Council

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COLOR ADO COUNTRY LIFE MAY 2022

The Cat’s Meow The success of “perfumed” baits for catfish BY DENNIS SMITH

| OUTDOORS@COLOR ADOCOUNTRYLIFE.ORG

B

ass, trout and walleyes probably command the majority of attention from local anglers, but the homely catfish is not without its share of loyal fans around here too. In fact, there are more of them hereabouts than you might imagine. Even uppity fly fishermen and tournament pros on the bass and walleye circuits will, if you pinch them hard enough, confess that a night of good old-fashioned, down-home, redneckstyle lawn-chair fishing for a stringer full of whiskerfish can be a barrel of laughs. Never mind that almost any catfish they catch will probably fight twice as hard and three times longer and taste better than all the others — except for the walleyes — to which they’ll run a very close second in the frying pan. Despite the popularity of the glamour species, clerks in the fishing department of any western hook and bullet store will tell you there’s a continual demand for the specialized rods, reels and terminal tackle many prefer for cats: large, wide-gapped hooks, heavy sliding sinkers, glow-in-the-dark rod lights, and the tinkle bells some guys like to put on their rods to wake them up in case they fall asleep waiting for a bite. And then there’s the arcane assortment of commercially prepared catfish baits ranging from gizzard shad marinated in anise, garlic or assorted fish oils to frozen suckers, anchovies, pickled crawdads, rancid blood baits and jars of stuff so horribly repugnant it would make a buzzard wretch. Nonetheless, catfish love them all and they sell like hotcakes, even if they don’t smell like them. Catfish are notorious night hunters with small beady eyes; they locate the majority of their food by smell. Plain old nightcrawlers are effective, too, but are more likely to attract non-target species like trout, carp and suckers. The boys and I like raw, fresh chicken liver — or rather the catfish do — so that’s what we use most often. It has just enough of that funky, farm boy charm about it to appeal to our redneck side (and the catfish’s taste buds) without being so utterly distasteful as to keep us from skewering meaty gobs of it on our hooks. Even so, we always stash baby-wipes or hand sanitizer and towels in our tackle bags to clean our hands with after we bait up so we can munch Cheetos, chips and miscellaneous snacks through the night without fear of contracting salmonella or some other nasty intestinal ailment. Dennis Smith is a freelance outdoors writer and photographer whose work appears nationally. He lives in Loveland.

MISS AN ISSUE? Catch up at coloradocountrylife.coop. Click on Outdoors.


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FOCUS ON RURAL LIFE A COLORADO COWBOY

A Lifetime of Experience

Ultimate Cowboy Showdown

CONTESTANT STEPHEN HEITMANN

Stephen Heitmann of Edison, Colorado, has a history with horses and farm life. He was born and raised by his mother, a horse trainer, and father, a lieutenant colonel in the U.S. Marine Corps, on a ranch in Cut Bank, Montana, before he moved Colorado in the fifth grade. He began breaking in and riding the family’s home-raised colts around age 14 and then studied horse training and management at Lamar Community College where he sharpened his knowledge and boosted his abilities. Since then, the Mountain View Electric Association consumer-member took to the field and honed his skills working with “some true, top-hand cowboys.” Now he’s putting those talents to the test.

CLASH OF THE COWBOYS

When Heitmann discovered the “Ultimate Cowboy Showdown” on Facebook and saw the prize offerings, he quickly applied to be a contestant and was subsequently chosen from numerous applicants. Hosted by country music artist Trace Adkins, season three of the show features 14 cultivated cowboys battling it out for the grand prize: a herd of cattle, a burly belt buckle and bragging rights. Cowboys are cut from the competition until the “ultimate cowboy” is revealed.

A BEEFED-UP RESUME

Heitmann, age 25, has a solid resume working with colts, shoeing horses, and landing a job as head house trainer and cowboy at Freeman Ranch in Yoder. In 2019, his cowboy savvy was captured in a viral video roping a runaway longhorn on Tejon Street in Colorado Springs (tinyurl.com/KOAA-Heitmann). “I’ve had extensive experience in a short amount of time, so I like to think that my experience coupled with my work ethic and determination gave me the edge I needed in the competition,” he says.

A RUGGED REGION

The “Ultimate Cowboy Showdown” premiered on April 21 on the INSP network. This year the show is set in Douglas, Wyoming, where the scenery is spectacular and Mother Nature is merciless. The show’s competitors are not only up against seasoned competition, but grueling challenges, harsh wind and cold temperatures.

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COLOR ADO COUNTRY LIFE MAY 2022

WHERE TO WATCH THE ULTIMATE COWBOY SHOWDOWN? Grab some popcorn and settle in for the “Ultimate Cowboy Showdown,” featured on the INSP network on Thursday evenings.



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COLOR ADO COUNTRY LIFE MAY 2022


YOUR STORIES

READERS’ PHOTOS

FUNNY STORIES

A year ago on Memorial Day, my Harriet Langer, a consumer-member of Poudre Valley REA, tunes into the co-op’s virtual annual meeting with CCL in hand.

Mountain Parks Electric consumer-members and North Park High Schoolers Talynn Schmidt and Nicole Myers visit Ireland and show off their CCL magazine at the Giant’s Causeway.

husband and I visited family members at our local cemeteries with three of our grandchildren, ages 11, 8 and 4. Upon visiting the second cemetery, our 8-yearold granddaughter asked me, “Grandma, is everyone here dead?” I answered yes. She responded by saying, “Grandma, I don’t want to die.” I asked, “Why not? They say heaven is a great place to go.” Our 4-year-old grandson chimed in, “Grandma, Tractor Supply is a great place to go, too.” Dave and Angie Jones, Florence San Isabel Electric Association consumer-members

A few years ago, I was teaching

school in St. Louis, Missouri. I taught first and second graders. One morning one of my little second graders came rushing into the classroom. “I’m so excited!” she said. “Our apple tree is blooming, but I’m not sure if we will have cherries or plums.” I did my best to not laugh when I said to her, “It may just be apples.” Karen Nazarenus, Pueblo San Isabel Electric Association consumer-member

Mountain View Electric consumer-members Gus and Lisa Hernandez bring CCL to their trip to Greece and are pictured here in front of the Acropolis.

I have two grandsons who live in

CCL stays warm with Poudre Valley REA consumermembers Vi and Tim Michaelis on the Continental Antarctica landing at Portal Point on the Antarctic Peninsula.

WINNER: Southeast Colorado Power Association consumer-members Terry and Areta Laird bring CCL on their visit to Great Stirrup Cay during a recent cruise.

Australia, so my daughter shares stories of what they are doing. When the boys are playing and getting into trouble my daughter often says, “You’re really pushing my buttons.” Her 5-yearold will say, “I don’t even know where these buttons are, so how can I push them?” Mariana Rohn, Grover Morgan County Rural Electric Association consumermember

Take Your Photo with Your Magazine and Win! It’s easy to win with Colorado Country Life. Simply take a photo of someone (or a selfie!) with the magazine and submit it on our Reader Engagement page at coloradocountrylife. coop. We’ll draw one photo to win $25 each month. The next deadline is Monday, May 16. Name, address and co-op must accompany photo. This month’s winners are Terry and Areta Laird of Eads. They took their copy of Colorado Country Life to the Great Stirrup Cay during a recent cruise. See all of the submitted photos on Facebook at facebook.com/ COCountryLife.

We pay $15 to each person who submits a funny story that’s printed in the magazine. At the end of the year we will draw one name from those submitting funny stories and that person will receive $200. Go to our Reader Engagement page at coloradocountrylife.coop to submit your funny story. COLOR ADO COUNTRY LIFE MAY 2022

29


DISCOVERIES

From and For the Backyard Colorado products for those who love to garden

Care for Your Cacti

Uplift Your Garden C-BITE plant supports materialized from a vision of “tinker toys for the garden.” Sold through Fort Collins-based Thriving Design, C-BITEs connect to create garden structures such as trellises and tomato cages and can accommodate gardens of all sizes. C-BITES can blend into their surroundings or stand out with tangerine-hued parts. Just snap them together, then stake and tie your plants to fit your fancy. Check out C-BITEs and other gardening gadgets at thrivingdesign.com.

Buzzing in Eastern Colorado For four years, Hanson Honeybee Farm has harvested honey from local honeybees to create jars of pure honey, whipped honey and alfalfa honey, as well as hand butters, lip balm, candles and more. A family-run business with farms in Ellicott and Boone, the Hansons maintain numerous hives to deliver honey lovers the sweet nectar they crave. Also, visit The Bee Barn, their retail store, on the weekends to peruse all kinds of fun honeyrelated products. For information, visit hansonhoneybee.com.

Cactus Pruner products were realized by chance. A customer of Goldenbased The Pipe Knife Company had used an auto glass removal tool to trim his agaves. Replicating that tool, ideas were hatched and a new category was added to The Pipe Knife Company’s catalog. Today, Cactus Pruner features cactus whackers, pruning saws, long pruning tweezers and more to help keep your cac ti looking well-kept. See Cactus Pruner’s collection at cactuspruner.com or at pipeknifecompany.com.

Sow Sensational Spring Seeds If you’re daydreaming about your garden’s possibilities, do yourself a favor and explore High Desert Seed + Gardens’ website or catalog. The Montrose-based farm promises a vast selection of open-pollinated, non-GMO and open-source seeds that are resilient in a variety of regions. Vegetable, herb and flower starts can be found at Montrose, Ridgway and Telluride farmers markets, or reach out by calling 970-240-3701 or highdesertseed@ gmail.com. More information at highdesertseed.com.

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COLOR ADO COUNTRY LIFE MAY 2022


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ELECTRIFY AND SAVE

IS A HEAT PUMP WATER HEATER RIGHT FOR YOU? Heat pump water heaters (HPWHs) are available in multiple sizes to fit any household, or commercial application and have fast recovery to keep hot water flowing. HPWHs use electricity to move heat from one place to another rather than generating their own heat like a traditional electric water heater. This makes them 2-3 times more efficient when properly installed. + ENERGY SAVINGS WITH MORE CONTROL HPWHs can offer up to 4 modes of operation including an auto-mode for daily use, a vacation mode to maximize energy savings when you are gone, and a high demand to boost heat recovery when you have a large number of guests overnight. Whether you want to save or need a little extra hot water, you are in control.

+ A SAFE ALTERNATIVE FOR YOUR HOME HPWHs are all-electric and combustion-free, removing a source of carbon monoxide and potential gas leaks in your home. Also, HPWH’s do not generate heat, so they remain cool to the touch.

+ A HPWH COSTS LESS TO OPERATE THAN PROPANE WATER HEATERS Water heating makes up about 18 percent of U.S. residential energy use. HPWHs can use up to 70 percent less energy than traditional electric water heaters when installed correctly.

VISIT US AT www.tristate.coop/BE

Tri-State is a not-for-profit power supplier to cooperatives and public power districts in Colorado, Nebraska, New Mexico and Wyoming.