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COLORADO FOREST FIRES ELECTRIC CO-OP RELIEF FUND Hundreds of our fellow electric co-op members lost their homes and businesses when forest fires burned through their communities this summer. Thousands of others have been affected by the fires. Colorado’s electric co-ops have established a fund to raise support for these co-op members. All funds raised will be donated to a charitable organization working with those affected by the fires. Make checks payable to CEEI* with Colorado Forest Fire Fund in the memo line. Send the form below-left with your donation. Keep the one on the below-right as your receipt. *CEEI is CREA’s 501.c.3 organization.

Colorado Fires Electric Co-op Relief Fund

Colorado Fires Co-op Relief Fund

Donation amount $__________________________________

Donation amount $__________________________________






Thank you for your donation.

Email:_____________________________________________ Phone:____________________________________________

Send your donation to: CREA/Colorado Fire Fund, 5400 Washington St., Denver, CO 80216


[contents] 4 5 6 7 12 14 16 20 22 24 25 28 29 30


SEPTEMBER 2018 Volume 49, Number 9


“Fall in love with Colorado” by Heather Ontiveros, a member of Grand Valley Power.





[cover] A decoy, skillfully carved by Jan Avery, is photographed by CCL outdoors writer Dennis Smith.



THE OFFICIAL PUBLICATION OF THE COLORADO RURAL ELECTRIC ASSOCIATION COMMUNICATIONS STAFF Mona Neeley, CCC, Publisher/Editor; mneeley@coloradocountrylife.org Cassi Gloe, CCC, Production Manager/Designer; cgloe@coloradocountrylife.org Kylee Coleman, Editorial/Admin. Assistant; kcoleman@coloradocountrylife.org ADVERTISING Kris Wendtland, Ad Representative; advertising@coloradocountrylife.org | advertising@coloradocountrylife.org | 303-902-7276 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 2018, Colorado Rural Electric Association. Call for reprint rights. EDITORIAL Denver Corporate Office, 5400 Washington Street, Denver, CO 80216; Phone: 303-455-4111 | mneeley@coloradocountrylife.org | coloradocountrylife.coop | facebook.com/COCountryLife | Twitter.com/ COCountryLife | Pinterest.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 $4.44 per year (37 cents per month), paid from equity accruing to the member. For nonmembers, a subscription is $9 per year in-state/$15 out-of-state. POSTMASTER Send address changes to Colorado Country Life, 5400 Washington Street, Denver, CO 80216

COCountryLife pinned: Like chicken? Love tots? Then try Chicken and Tot-waffles. Get the recipe on our Pinterest page at pinterest.com/ cocountrylife/

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johnskibaphoto Seems like I’m always running toward the things that others are running away from. #cocountrylife

colorado_electric_cooperatives posted: CREA supports a Commitment to Zero Contacts. We want every co-op line worker to go home at the end of the day. #electriccoops #electricity #safetyfirst #commitmenttozero

Try some totally awesome tot recipes. Enter to win your own copy of Tots! 50 Tot-ally Awesome Recipes from Totchos to Sweet Po-tot-o Pie. Visit coloradocountrylife.coop and click on Contests for information on how to enter. We will choose a winner on Monday, September 17. SEPTEMBER 2018



Co-op Diversity

Electric cooperatives vary in size, density, revenue, consumer needs BY KENT SINGER CREA EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR KSINGER@COLORADOREA.ORG


“If you’ve seen one electric co-op, you’ve seen … one electric co-op.” This is a line many of us in the electric cooperative world use to emphasize the point that every electric co-op is unique. This is particularly true in Colorado where cooperatives provide electricity to 70 percent of the state’s landmass through what may be the most diverse group of electric distribution co-ops in the country. All 22 of the state’s electric distribution co-ops are members of the Colorado Rural Electric Association where we work to meet their various and diverse needs. Among the services CREA provides is this statewide magazine, Colorado Country Life. But that, too, is customized to meet the unique needs of each cooperative that uses the magazine to communicate with its consumer-members. On pages 7-10 you’ll find specific information on upcoming meetings, director elections, rate adjustments, appliance rebates and other local news provided by your specific cooperative. Each electric co-op is operated independently and is a separate business with its own board of directors, management and staff. Each co-op elects a board of directors comprised of members of the co-op and each board sets policies and works with management to run the co-op in a way that best benefits the community and the consumer-members who depend on that co-op for their electricity. Eighteen of the state’s co-ops purchase their electricity from Tri-State Generation and Transmission Association, a power supply cooperative that also serves distribution co-ops and public power districts in Nebraska, New Mexico and Wyoming. Four Colorado co-ops purchase their electricity from Xcel Energy. The diversity of Colorado’s electric co-ops can be further measured by many different factors: size of service territory, number of members, geography, economic base, power supply, socioeconomic status,



political affiliation, weather, etc. All of these factors come into play in the dayto-day operations of each electric co-op. In terms of size, the service territory of some Colorado electric coops is larger than a lot of Kent Singer eastern states. For instance, Southeast Colorado Power Association, headquartered in La Junta, serves about 10,000 consumers over 13,000 square miles in 11 counties; Southeast has a customer density of 1.8 members per mile of line. Meanwhile, Holy Cross Energy serves more than 59,000 members in a more compact, three-county area of western Colorado and has a customer density of more than 18 members per mile of line. In addition to the simple size difference of the various co-op service territories, the geographic and socioeconomic diversity of Colorado electric co-ops is also significant. Colorado’s electric co-op service territories include the agricultureoriented eastern plains, the urban and suburban Front Range, the Western Slope resort and ski areas, the desert plateaus of southwestern Colorado and all points in between. Co-ops serve the entirety of Colorado’s “persistent poverty” counties (those where 20 percent or more of the population has lived in poverty for the last 30 years) as well as some of the wealthiest ZIP codes. Our co-ops range in size from White River Electric Association, headquartered in Meeker, which is the state’s smallest electric co-op with 3,300 meters, to Intermountain Rural Electric Association, which is the state’s largest with nearly 160,000 meters. While some Colorado coops serve areas of fast-paced population growth and economic activity, others are experiencing net population decreases and stagnant economies. Of course, the political diversity of

Colorado is also reflected in co-op boards and policies. While much of co-op service territory coincides with areas that are decidedly red with Republican voters, there are many areas in coop service territories where the predominant voter registration is Democrat or

unaffiliated. All of this is to say that one size does NOT fit all when it comes to legislation and regulation of electric cooperatives. Requirements that raise costs to the co-ops might be more easily absorbed by a co-op with more consumers per mile of line paying the costs. Those same requirements may be an extreme burden for a co-op with only a couple of consumers per mile of line paying that same cost. One co-op may have consumers in the higher income brackets willing to pay more for electricity to ensure it comes from preferred fuel sources, while another co-op may have consumers struggling to pay the electric bill at the current rate. Some co-ops need help with infrastructure where growth is rampant. Others need help with economic development where there is no growth. Colorado’s co-ops are diverse businesses, yet all Colorado electric co-ops agree on core co-op principles: providing safe, affordable and reliable electricity; democratic member control by locally-elected boards; concern for the communities we serve; and the continued ability to determine our own fate without the help of our legislature or Public Utilities Commission. After all, if you’ve seen one electric cooperative. …

Kent Singer, Executive Director


[ letters]

A Penny for Your Thoughts

I enjoyed reading “How Much Electricity does a Penny Buy?” (August ’18) It made me think you appreciate that our readers care about getting value for their money. However, I was then struck by the irony of the fact that the next article, “U.S. Power Mix Keeps Adding Renewables,” completely ignored the topic of costs of generating electricity. This second article could have included data about the average cost of generating electricity from each of the common renewable sources and, for comparison, the common non-renewable sources. Joe Czechowski, Peyton, Mountain View Electric member

Yeah for Cultural Exchange

I’ve been inspired reading about CREA’s electrification project in Guatemala. I served in the Peace Corps in Belize and loved traveling in Guatemala, exploring the villages and getting to know the local people. Guatemala is culturally quite different from Belize. Many villages were without basic services. I think CREA’s outreach — not only the electrical project but the cultural exchange — expresses the best of what it means to be American. You set a standard of generosity, understanding and support. I’m proud to be even a tiny part of that and proud that this is how CREA is using its funds. Erin Addison Southeast Colorado Power Association member

THE TEAM IS RAISING MONEY TO HELP THOSE WHO STRUGGLE TO PAY THEIR HEATING BILLS. Colorado’s Electric Cooperatives bike team - Powering the Plains is raising money to help those who struggle to pay their energy bills. A team of representatives from local electric co-ops will ride in the Pedal the Plains bicycle tour of the eastern plains of Colorado. This three-day tour will take riders on an adventure highlighting three unique and quaint communities. To make a donation to support Energy Outreach Colorado and the team, please send payment and the form below to: CEEI, 5400 Washington Street, Denver, CO 80216. Please write EOC on your check’s memo line.


The Comfort of Food

We see the signs on the side of the road that say “Palisade Peaches,” but don’t think about the people who make it happen, from the growers to the hands that pick them. It was great to hear the story of how the hospitality center in Palisade assists to make the lives of migrant workers a little more comfortable during the labor-intensive peach growing and picking seasons. (August ’18) Having a place to congregate and a warm meal is appreciated by anyone at the end of a day when you’ve worked hard and are away from home. Emma Pen-McCleave Poudre Valley REA member

Send letters to Editor Mona Neeley at 5400 Washington St., Denver, CO 80216 or at mneeley@coloradocountrylife. org. Letters may be edited.

To send your tax-deductible Powering the Plains donation, fill out this form and send it with a check to: CEEI, c/o CREA/PTP, 5400 Washington St., Denver, CO 80216. Name: Address:



I would like to contribute: ❏ $20 ❏ $50 ❏ $75 ❏ OTHER

Donations will benefit Energy Outreach Colorado.

Learn more at crea.coop or visit us at Facebook.com/coloradorea or twitter.com/coloradorea CHECK OUT ENERGY OUTREACH COLORADO AT ENERGYOUTREACH.ORG.




[community events] [September] September 7-9 Yuma Wire Collectors Wire Show Old Threshers Show Grounds 9 am-5 pm • 719-343-0041 September 8 Bellvue Rist Canyon Mountain Festival Field Opposite Fire Station 1 10 am-4 pm • rcvfd.org September 8 Dolores Night with the Ancients Astronomy Program Canyons of the Ancients National Monument Visitor Center & Museum 8:30 pm • 970-882-5600 September 8-9 El Paso County Front Range Open Studios Tour Weekend Various El Paso County Locations 10 am-5 pm • 719-488-0629 September 8 Greeley “The Big Stitch Lady” Quilt Guild Meeting Evans Community Center 7 pm • pieceablefriends.com

September 15 Lake City Uncorked Wine & Music Festival Historic Downtown Lake City 10 am • 970-596-9071 September 15 Limon Pedal the Plains Bikers’ Welcome Celebration Various Limon Locations 719-775-9418 • limonchamber.us September 17-22 Grand Lake U.S. Constitution Week Various Grand Lake Locations usconstitutionweek.org September 20-22 Denver Great American Beer Festival Colorado Convention Center greatamericanbeerfestival.com September 20 Durango Pancake Day 2500 Main Avenue 7 am-7 pm • 970-844-0226

September 15 Fort Collins Historic Homes Tour Various Fort Collins Locations 10 am-4 pm • poudrelandmarks.org



September 22-23, 10 am-5 pm, at various Salida art studios, Salida

Painters, sculptors, photographers, clock makers and more welcome you to visit their art studios for this fun annual event. Thirty-four working artists will participate in this self-guided tour all within historic downtown Salida. Visit salidastudiotour. com for more information and to download the tour brochure.

September 21-22 Golden Tri-State Doll Sale Jefferson County Fairgrounds 303-988-8591

September 29-30 Fruita National Alpaca Farm Days Open House 2034 J Road 10 am-3 pm • 970-858-8866

September 22-23 Durango Fall Photography Train Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad durangotrain.com

September 29 Westcliffe Arts Hullabaloo Various Westcliffe Locations 719-783-2099 • sangresartguild.org

September 8 Raymer Car Show, Art Show and Swap Meet Shirley Avenue September 22 friendsofraymer.com Durango Wolfwood Refuge Art Auction September 12-16 Durango & Silverton Railroad Golden Grange In Plein Sight® Gallery Exhibit 5-9 pm • wolfwoodrefuge.org Golden Community Center planjeffco.org September 24-29 Westcliffe September 12 “Alla Prima Westcliffe” Plein Air La Veta Painting Event “Try-Art-Fecta” Art Classes Various Wet Mountain Valley Nicole Copel Ceramics Studio Locations 9 am-4:15 pm • 719-742-0250 sangresartguild.org September 15 Durango Archaeology Lecture: Otzi the Iceman Fort Lewis College Student Union Ballroom 7 pm • sjbas.org

Salida Studio Tour

September 28 Fort Collins Night at the Museum: Moon Landings & Martinis Fort Collins Museum of Discovery fcmod.org September 29 Colorado Springs Bus Trip to Sand Dunes National Park Bear Creek Nature Center Visitor’s Center 7:30 am-7 pm • 719-520-6387

[October] October 4-7 Durango Durango Cowboy Poetry Gathering Historic Strater Hotel durangocowboypoetrygathering.org October 5-7 Boulder Adventure Film Festival Boulder Theater adventurefilm.org/boulder October 6 Calhan Calhan Alumni/Homecoming Luncheon Whittemore Building at the Fairgrounds 11 am-1 pm • 719-659-5879 October 6 Fort Collins “Dance Beyond the Limits” Club Tico 8:30 am-4:30 pm • 970-493-2113

October 6 Fort Morgan Craft Fair United Presbyterian Church 970-867-2914 October 6 La Veta Oktoberfest 5K and Fun Run La Veta Town Park 8:30 am • tinyurl.com/ Oktoberfest5K October 6 Loveland Fall Antique and Collectible Toy Show and Sale Larimer County Fairgrounds 9 am-3 pm • 970-214-1035



Calendar, Colorado Country Life, 5400 Washington St., Denver, CO 80216; fax to 303455-2807; or email calendar@ coloradocountrylife.org.

Please send name of event, date, time, venue, brief description, phone number, a photo, if you have one, and email and/or website for more information.



[White River] A YEAR IN REVIEW



White River Electric Association’s staff is preparing for its 73rd Annual Meeting and we feel fortunate to call this valley our home. It is filled with spectacular scenery, abundant wildlife and rich natural resources. But the area’s greatest resource is its people: their generosity and determination. This year’s dry conditions and unprecedented wildfires tested every facet of the community. We are all forever grateful for the dedicated and heroic acts of our fire crews and other first responders. We are also grateful to live in a place where it is second nature to reach out to help neighbors, whether it be in response to fires or other difficulties. Meeker is at its best when it rallies together to respond to an identified need. This concept is also fundamental to the cooperative business model. The cooperative concept is simple: a group of people coming together to collectively serve a common need. In 1945 that is exactly what the founding WREA members did to provide much needed electricity to our rural areas. Electric cooperatives have expanded these ideals over the years to include open and voluntary membership, democratic member control, members’ economic participation, cooperation among cooperatives and community service. WREA Rates Electric rates generate the necessary revenues for WREA to perform its core mission of providing safe, reliable electric services to its members at the most reasonable costs possible. This year WREA restructured its electric

rates by lowering members’ announce its latest energy charge and increasing project: the Piceance the monthly service charge. Creek Solar Farm. This On average, it has increased will be a 4-megawatt members’ monthly bills by $5 solar array located in per month. The increase in the Piceance Creek that monthly service charge reflects is estimated to begin the fixed costs necessary to production in January serve an individual meter. 2019. WREA owns and Alan J. Michalewicz Fixed costs include the wires, operates the Meeker poles and operational services Solar Garden and the necessary to serve each meter. The WREA Miller Creek Ditch project but board approved this rate restructure the Piceance Creek Solar Farm is owned following a lengthy cost-of-service by Cypress Creek Renewables. WREA is study. No one likes an increase in their in the process of developing a program monthly bills, but unfortunately it was where its members can participate time for WREA to restructure its rates in this newest project. All three of to remain competitive in the energy these projects meet WREA’s goal of market and to more accurately reflect developing local renewables at a savings the costs associated with providing a to the membership. reliable infrastructure. WREA’s monthly service charge was $5 per month for Finances & Audit over 20 years and was the lowest in the WREA is pleased that WREA’s loads have state of Colorado. WREA continues to stabilized with a slight upward trend in focus on internal measures to reduce 2018. WREA remains a financially stable costs and increase efficiencies. WREA’s electric cooperative with a strong last internal rate increase was in 2013, equity position. The financial report for which was followed by a rate decrease 2017 includes the following: operating and year-end bill credit in 2015. revenue at $64,726,942; operating margins at $678,559; total plant utility at Local Renewable Generation $42,553,446; and equities at the end of White River Electric prides itself on 2017 were $63,853,187 with equity as a not chasing industry trends but always percent of assets ratio at 69.31 percent. welcomes an opportunity to pursue The independent auditing firm of Kevin projects that make electric and financial S. Kelso, CPA, P.C., P.A. completed the sense for our membership. The Meeker 2017 financial audit for White River Solar Garden went on line in May 2016 Electric. The audit confirmed that and remains fully leased. The WREA there were no irregularities or material Miller Creek Ditch Hydro electric plant weaknesses in the internal control began production in September 2017 structure or operations of the company. and produces electricity from April through early fall. WREA is proud to [continued on page 8]




[White River]

A YEAR IN REVIEW [continued from page 7]

WREA Safety and Reliability Safety and reliability require our constant commitment and focus. White River continues to emphasize the importance of electric safety for our community with various safety demonstrations. We also focus on employee safety with enhanced trainings and safety meetings. White River recently completed the rebuild of 7 miles of distribution line heading up County Road 8. Difficult terrain made this a challenging project and the work of our dedicated crews is greatly appreciated. White River Electric continues to be proud of our reliability with system availability that is above the state and national average at 99 percent for 2017.



Member Services and Our Community Serving members goes beyond electric service. It expands into our scholarship programs; school, sport and community sponsorships; and economic development efforts. We are particularly pleased that we have expanded our philanthropy in recent years with funds received from matching grants provided by Basin Electric Power Cooperative and use of unclaimed capital credit funds. Thank you I tell our board of directors that our staff members are second to none. Their commitment and dedication to our membership is genuine and makes White River Electric a special organization. Thank you also to the

board of directors for its leadership and support throughout the year. The passing of long-standing director Gary Dunham made for a difficult spring. For 30 years, Gary was a fixture at WREA’s board meetings and events. His impact on WREA cannot be understated and his legacy will continue with White River Electric’s Gary H. Dunham Memorial Scholarship. On behalf of everyone at White River Electric, we wish you all the best in the coming year. Alan J. Michalewicz General Manager/CEO


[White River]



Fitting in and being part of the group can be challenging for anyone, especially high school students. It is this sense of belonging, of being part of something bigger, that sets electric cooperatives apart from other utilities. The Cooperative Youth Leadership Camp (CYLC) in Steamboat Springs, aims to bring high school students together in a collaborative setting to learn the cooperative principles while cultivating the students’ leadership and teamwork skills. This year’s CYLC was July 13 through 19 and hosted 45 Colorado and Wyoming high school students and other hand-picked scholars from Kansas and Oklahoma. White River Electric is pleased to have sponsored Ridge Williams and Kolbi Franklin for this leadership opportunity. At CYLC, the youth gain a greater understanding of how their electric cooperative operates by creating their own cooperative. The students learn leadership and teamwork skills while participating in daily membership meetings, establishing committees and electing a general manager and board of directors. They also learned about power generation by touring both Trapper Mine and the neighboring Craig Station power plant. To be selected for this trip, Williams and Franklin were chosen through an essay contest in which they had to write about leadership and what it meant to them. A panel of WREA member volunteers judged the essays anonymously, which resulted in Williams and Franklin being extended the offer to attend the 2018 camp. “Students are selected based on their essay, but are quick to show leadership potential once at camp,” said Kari Matrisciano, CYLC camp director. “Once at camp, we learn of their academic achievements and community contributions, along with their attitude when faced with a new opportunity.” While at camp, students participate in group activities and by

Several of the Colorado and Wyoming campers stop for a photo on top of Mount Werner during one of the CYLC outings. Ridge Williams (far right) was one of two campers chosen by WREA to attend the 2018 Cooperative Youth Leadership Camp.

educational sessions while learning the importance of inclusivity and collaboration. Even the scheduled leisure activities offer learning opportunities as the students work together maneuvering their river rafts down the Colorado River, competing in a volleyball tournament and showcasing their skills at the annual talent show. The students also tour downtown Steamboat Springs and enjoy an evening dance and swimming during their free time. Established in the 1970s, the CYLC is sponsored by White River Electric and is coordinated by the Colorado Electric Educational Institute. The 2019 program will be open for interested parties by December 2018. For more information on the Cooperative Youth Leadership Camp, please visit www.wrea.org.



Wearing a bright orange vest, keeping your finger off the trigger until you’re ready to shoot and only pointing at your target are some of the safety measures associated with hunting. Electrical safety should be added to the list. Never shoot near or toward power lines, power poles, transformers or substations. A stray bullet could not only damage equipment, potentially interrupting electric service, but could also be deadly to the shooter. Damage to the conductor could drop the line to the ground, causing a threat of electrocution to those nearby. Safe Electricity urges hunters to follow these safety tips while hunting: • Familiarize yourself with the location of power lines and equipment on land where you shoot. • Be especially careful in wooded areas where power lines may not be as visible. • Take notice of warning signs and keep clear of electrical equipment.


• Do not place deer stands on utility poles or climb poles. Energized lines and equipment on the poles can conduct electricity to anyone who comes in contact with them. • Do not place decoys on power lines or other utility equipment. Anything attached to a pole, except for utility equipment, is an obstruction and poses a serious hazard to utility workers. Don’t force linemen to hunt for problems you have created in a hunting area. Sometimes damage isn’t noticed for several weeks or months, or unless an outage occurs. Keep yourself and your utility safe this hunting season. For more electrical safety tips, visit www.SafeElectricity.org.



[White River]



Electrical equipment, appliances and power substations all contain copper, which serves as a lucrative incentive for thievery. It is used in our plumbing, fiber optic and electrical systems. Thieves can sell copper for profit, which means electrical utilities and consumers can be targeted. Impacts of theft can include death or injury to the thief, as well as power outages; costly equipment replacements; and failures of emergency sirens, irrigation systems and cell towers, which can lead to economic loss and risks to public safety. Many utilities are taking steps against dangerous copper thievery, adding sensors or video equipment for surveillance. Warning signs and law enforcement patrols also help deter copper theft. Tougher laws, penalties and requirements that buyers document all transactions may discourage thievery.

Steps consumers can take include securing vacant homes and construction sites, hiding and securing scrap metal and enclosing external equipment like air-conditioning units. Consider upgrading to copper-welded wiring instead of pure copper. Safe Electricity offers these additional steps to protect your property and electrical supply: • Pay attention to your surroundings. Report suspicious activity in your area. • Take precautions when you are away. If you are planning an extended trip, designate a neighbor to keep watch over your property. • Install a surveillance camera to help deter and identify thieves. For more information on copper theft prevention, visit SafeElectricity.org.

Energy Efficiency Tip of the Month

Turn of kitchen and bath exhaust fans within 20 minutes after you’re done cooking or bathing. When replacing exhaust fans, consider installing highefficiency, low-noise models. Source: energystar.gov 10



Watch HD TV in the Wild

After a day fishing, hunting, or camping, you can always count on DISH to deliver your favorite HD TV. Catch up on live news, sports, and entertainment anywhere in the continental United States. And only pay for the months you use. Pay As You Go packages from

• Affordable portable satellite antennas. • Fast, simple setup – no Wi-Fi required! • You don’t need DISH at home to get HD TV outdoors.

Call 877-790-1540 or visit dishoutdoors.com Requires antenna and receiver purchase. Monthly fees and limits on number and type of receivers will apply. All prices, packages, programming, features, functionality and offers subject to change without notice. All charges, including monthly programming, pay-per-view and equipment upgrades, must be paid in advance, failure to pay by due date will lead to service disconnection within 24 hours. Offer available for new and qualified former customers. Additional restrictions may apply. 2018 DISH Network L.L.C. All rights reserved.



Bright Lights, Clean Water for Guatemala










Fifteen volunteers from electric cooperatives in Colorado and Oklahoma are preparing to leave for Guatemala September 16. They will spend three weeks stringing power lines on 130 poles to bring electricity to two small villages in the Ixcan region near the Guatemalan-Mexican border. Electricity will be brought to the schools, churches and health centers in the villages of Pie de Cerro and Tierra Blanca Salinas. Each of the 110 homes in the two villages will receive at least two lightbulbs and two electrical outlets. The team also hopes to bring E R GY T R A I L S N each home a E water filter to provide clean water. The nonprofit Colorado Electric N Educational D I CO Institute is raising LO RA D O funds to purchase a 5-gallon water filter for each household in each village. These “Eco Filtros,” manufactured in Guatemala, last for two years and make safe, clean drinking water available to the families. Readers are invited to be part of this project by donating to the Clean Water Fund. Filters are $35 each plus $9 shipping. Anyone wishing to donate any amount can visit crea.coop/ community-outreach/current-causes or mail a check made out to CEEI (with Clean Water Fund on the memo line) to Colorado Rural Electric Association, 5400 Washington St., Denver, CO 80216. Team members heading for Guatemala include Dale Kishbaugh, CREA director of safety and loss control; Christian Baker, Holy Cross Energy, Glenwood Springs; Kris Barbee, Southeast Colorado Power Association, La Junta; Ben Ludington, Poudre Valley Rural Electric Association, Fort Collins; Kelly Snow, United Power, Brighton; Chet Stickler, Holy Cross Energy, Glenwood Springs; and Nate Towne, Mountain Parks Electric, Granby. Alternates are Chris Stanworth, White River Electric, Meeker; and Baker McKonley, La Plata Electric Association, Durango. Watch CREA’s Facebook page at Facebook. com/coloradoREA for reports from Guatemala September 16 – October 4.

Consider a Job With Your Local Electric Co-op If you want to work where the action is, how about a job in the electric industry? “Electricity is the backbone of our economy and is crucial to our national security,” concludes a recent report by M.J. Bradley and Associates, LLC, on the economic impact of the electric industry. “Our high-tech society demands electricity to power or charge nearly every new product or technology that comes to market.” All of that adds up to directly supporting more than 2.6 million jobs. Those include the obvious lineworkers who maintain the power lines and other infrastructure that keep the lights on. And it also includes engineers, information technology professionals, office workers, accountants, administrators and managers, member services representatives, system operators, human resources personnel, attorneys, communicators, renewable energy coordinators and others. Each electric co-op hires local employees who can provide the services required to meet the needs of its community. Many co-ops throughout Colorado have jobs available because many baby boomers are retiring. Nationwide, 6,000 utility workers retired last year. More retirements are coming. If you are graduating from high school or college, looking for a new career and wanting to move to suburban or rural Colorado, think about working for the local electric cooperative.

Going the Extra Mile Did you know electric cooperatives maintain more miles of power lines per consumer and acquire less revenue than other types of electric utilities?

Electric Cooperatives

Number of consumers served: 8


$19,000 Other Electric Utilities

Number of consumers served: 32

Even though they serve fewer consumers and acquire less revenue (per mile of line), electric co-ops always go the extra mile, maintaining a tried-and-true record of delivering safe, reliable electric service to the members they serve.


$79,000 Sources: EIA, 2016 data. Includes revenue and consumer averages per mile of line. coloradocountrylife.coop


ENERGY INNOVATIONS SUMMIT Learn What’s New in the Electric Industry

Co-ops Learn From National Solar Project For the past four years, electric cooperatives have worked jointly to advance research into the construction and use of solar energy. The project, known as the SUNDA or Solar Utility Network Deployment Acceleration project, was funded in part with a Department of Energy Sunshot Initiative grant. The program ended earlier this year. Its influence, however, continues. SUNDA included 17 distribution and generation and transmission cooperatives of various sizes in diverse locations, including Tri-State Generation and Transmission Association in Westminster and Poudre Valley Rural Electric Association in Fort Collins. “Lessons from their real-world experience formed the core of a set of tools that have already been used by hundreds of other co-ops across the nation,” said Debra Roepke of the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association’s Business and Technology Strategies group. “The partner co-ops collaborated with one another, generously shared their challenges and successes, and contributed to a rich array of resources that will continue to support co-ops as they navigate the changing energy landscape,” Roepke said. Total solar capacity owned or contracted by electric cooperatives rocketed from 94 megawatts in 2013 to 868 MW in 2018. Electric co-ops now host 75 percent of all utility-sponsored community solar projects. In Colorado, all of the co-ops receive electricity from solar resources, and 18 of the co-ops are working with or will soon be receiving electricity from local solar facilities. In total, cooperatives nationwide now own or purchase more than nine times as much solar energy as they did in 2013 prior to the SUNDA project. The project built a broad co-op knowledge base, producing field manuals, business models, finance and insurance prospectuses and procurement guides, and establishing a framework to accelerate solar technology adoption by co-ops. “Solar may not make sense for every co-op,” Roepke said, “but we now have a tool set — made by co-ops, for co-ops — that enables any co-op to objectively assess their solar options and support implementation.”

Electric Co-ops Lead in Satisfaction Survey Proactive communication, reliability, contributing to their communities and good customer service pushed electric cooperatives to the top of the list in consumer satisfaction, according to J.D. Power’s recently released residential satisfaction study. In the study of the 138 largest electric utility brands across the United States, electric cooperatives were the highest-rated utilities. coloradocountrylife.coop

The summit will be Monday, October 29 at the Westin Downtown Denver hotel on Lawrence Street. Participants will attend sessions on: • Energy efficiency and demand • Forecasting renewable energy • Examining energy storage technology • Blockchains and the power industry • Colorado energy innovations • Electric vehicles fast charging technology • Community choice aggregation. The summit is open to anyone interested in the electric industry and its future.

Register now at CREA.coop.

Horse-drawn Hearse Returns to Honor State’s Fallen Officers Nearly six years ago, Colorado Country Life featured Lorraine Melgosa of Manzanola and her horse-drawn hearse in its magazine (tinyurl.com/ HorseDrawnHearse). For about 20 years she offered her services, free of charge, to carry the caskets of soldiers, police officers, murder victims and children to their final resting places. In 2013, Melgosa, her horse and her hearse retired. Now, she is bringing back her horse-drawn hearse. This past year, when three Colorado deputies were killed in the line of duty, she couldn’t stay retired. She reached out to friends and supporters and they reinstated the service, now as the Rocky Mountain Honor Guard. Melgosa is now training two horses to be ready if there is a call for their services. A GoFundMe page has been started at gofundme.com/ rocky-mountain-honor-guard to help defray expenses involved in providing this service. Although, as Melgosa said in a FOX31 news story, she is praying she never gets a call. If that call does come, she, her horse and her hearse will be ready to provide an honorable, respectful way to honor law enforcement and military personnel killed in the line of duty. SEPTEMBER 2018



A New Solution for Greenhouse Gas Co-ops and scientists team up on an innovative approach to energy and the environment BY PAUL WESSLUND


Later this year, five teams of scientists and engineers from around the world will start packing up and relocating their laboratories to a patchwork of gravel lots next to a coal-fired power plant in northeastern Wyoming. Their mission: nothing less than finding beneficial ways to reuse greenhouse gas that’s released into the Earth’s atmosphere. They aim to grab the carbon dioxide gas from the burning coal before it can contribute to climate change and turn it into something that might be part of everyday life, like concrete, plastic or liquid fuel. Dan Walsh, the senior power supply and generation director for the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association, sees value in the Wyoming research, even beyond reducing the environmental effects of coal plants. He says it would be great if we stopped thinking of the carbon in carbon dioxide as nothing more than waste. “We see a need to take carbon dioxide and turn it into a useful product,” Walsh says. That won’t only reduce waste at coal power plants, he says, but also for users of other carbonbased fuels like natural gas and gasoline. “The electric power industry is no longer the largest generator of carbon. The transportation industry now owns that title,” Walsh says. “We have to do something to come up with a way to utilize carbon dioxide in a beneficial way.” A breakthrough for humanity The Wyoming launching pad for that high-flying goal brings together far-flung partners, including Tri-State Generation and Transmission Association, which supplies electricity to 18 of Colorado’s 22 electric cooperatives. Other partners include Wyoming’s governor, local electric co-ops and a group that awards multimillion dollar prizes “to bring about radical breakthroughs for the benefit of humanity.” Two years ago, the XPRIZE, a private innovation group based in California, announced $20 million in prizes “for transformational approaches to converting (carbon dioxide) emissions into valuable products.” The final prizes will be awarded in 2020. In May of this year, XPRIZE narrowed the applicants to 10. Five of those will set up shop later this year on the Wyoming test site. The other five will operate out of Alberta, Canada. Electric co-ops have a special stake in the Wyoming test




site: The power plant is owned by Basin Electric Power Cooperative, which is based in North Dakota; and financial support comes from Colorado’s Tri-State, as well as NRECA. The XPRIZE finalists that will be building their labs at the Wyoming site are: • BREATHE — from India, working to produce methanol, which can be used as a liquid fuel. • C4X — from China, developing new ways to produce plastics. • Carbon Capture Machine — from Scotland, producing building materials. • CarbonCure — from Canada, specializing in cement and concrete processes and products. • Carbon Upcycling UCLA — from California, making a substitute for concrete. During the next six months, those teams will be setting up “mini factories” at the Wyoming test site, says Jason Begger, executive director of the Wyoming Infrastructure Authority, which oversees the site and whose formal name is the Wyoming Integrated Test Center. Begger says the teams will set up to access the ductwork and piping providing flue gas from the power plant, which contains about 12 percent carbon dioxide. They’ll develop the technology to separate and convert the carbon dioxide from the flue gas and show that their projects can turn waste carbon into useful products. The test center project started with a state government initiative to plan for the future of the region’s coal resources, and has quickly connected to the larger worldwide effort to capture and use carbon dioxide. In June, the Wyoming Infrastructure Authority formally partnered with the U.S. Department of Energy’s National Carbon Capture Center, a testing site in Alabama established about nine years ago. That agreement will mean closer cooperation with the Carbon Capture Center’s experience and its network of experts. Connecting with other researchers The DOE’s Carbon Capture program manager John Litynski explains how the agreement benefits the Carbon Capture Center as well: “We can only test up to 1.5 megawatts, which we call small pilot scale. The Wyoming test center has the capability to test up to 18 megawatts … which we would call large pilot.” For years, the DOE has explored ways coloradocountrylife.coop

XPRIZE finalists are building labs at this Wyoming power plant where they will test beneficial uses of carbon dioxide.

to remove the carbon dioxide from power plant emissions. The basic problem the DOE is trying to solve is the costliness of the process and the huge share of electricity produced by the power plant that it uses up. One of the long-standing ideas for managing greenhouse gases has been to remove the carbon dioxide from the power plant emissions, then inject it into underground rock formations, an idea called carbon capture and storage. But the XPRIZE and the Wyoming test center take a different approach of finding something more useful to do with the carbon dioxide than storing it permanently underground. The DOE recently added the quest for new uses of carbon dioxide to its research. The main focus of the DOE effort is to search for better ways to remove the carbon dioxide from power plant emissions.

Litynski says that this year the department is spending $90 million to research carbon capture. It’s spending about $12 million on carbon utilization, up from about $1 million three years ago. This summer the DOE issued a $13 million request for research projects on “novel methods for making products from carbon dioxide or coal.” While headlines about coal and climate change are generating controversy around the globe, the Wyoming test center is heading in a different direction. Walsh credits the center’s international collaboration of government, private groups and electric coops with “a great vision” for rethinking one of the world’s biggest energy dilemmas. Paul Wesslund writes on consumer and cooperative affairs for the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association.






They say birds of a feather flock together. And, in this case it is true. Jan Avery and Syd Wood complement each other’s skills as, together, they carve and paint beautiful duck decoys. But, that’s not the way it started out. They each had to develop their skills before they met on the internet. Avery designs multilayered printed circuit boards on her computer for a living, but she’s also a hunter who carves waterfowl decoys from blocks of wood for the sheer joy of it. An award-winning artist who lives on the outskirts of Windsor, Colorado, Avery works in many mediums: oils, acrylics, wood, ceramics and feathers. (You should see some of her classic, fulldress salmon flies.) She’s been carving waterfowl decoys in Colorado on and off for more than 30 years. Among those are some thoroughly modern decorative decoys — intricately painted and scrupulously detailed right down to individual feather barbules.

However, her real passion is replicating the rustic, working-class decoys originated by the master Chesapeake Bay and New England carvers during the heyday of American waterfowling near the turn of the 20th century. Now, as any duck hunter will tell you, there’s nothing new under the sun where using decoys to lure ducks, geese and other wild game to their guns is concerned — or to their nets, spears and bows, as in the case of the ancients. Hunters have decoyed ducks and geese for centuries. In fact, scientific evidence shows Native American hunters have used decoys for at least 1,800 years, and likely longer. Archaeological testing on a dozen duck decoys discovered in a cave near Lovelock, Nevada, in 1911 indicates they were made by Native Americans living on the Colorado Plateau during the Archaic Period some 2,000 years ago. Meticulously woven from tule reeds, some of them adorned with feathers and bird skins, they are still considered the

oldest known decoys in the world and are on display in the Smithsonian's National Museum of the American Indian. Time and technology have seen duck decoys evolve from primitive, reed-andmud concoctions through various stages of design and development to modern-day, injection-molded plastic imitations so remarkably life-like they look as though they could rise up and fly. Interestingly, while today’s massproduced, lifelike decoys are preferred by most modern hunters, wooden decoys are considered a unique and truly genuine North American folk art. Those old, hand-carved ducks, geese and shorebirds from the golden age of waterfowling, with their rustic charm, muted colors and elegant grace, have become sought after by field sport historians, collectors and connoisseurs — and the inspiration for modern-day carver/artists like Avery. Avery has collected decoys and taken an interest in the works of the old masters

Top: Genuine antique decoys, or skillfully carved and painted reproductions? Only a trained eye can tell. 16



[ feature] for years. She originally picked up the craft in the ’80s from her father, Ken, who used to carve his own working decoys back in the day. It wasn’t until after he suffered a stroke at the age of 82 that Avery began to carve with him in earnest. The stroke left him unable to shoulder a shotgun but it didn’t keep him from going afield with Avery, her brothers and her beloved yellow Lab, Sage. And it didn’t keep him from teaching Avery more about the craft. They would spend hours carving and painting beautiful mallard, wood duck and teal decoys together. It was therapeutic for both of them and it wasn’t long before she became hooked. To this day, her father remains the inspiration behind all her carvings. “Carving keeps me close to my dad’s memory,” she told me, “and all the fun we had together in those days.” But just as styles in decoys evolved over the years, so did Avery’s taste in them. She grew to admire the sleek lines and understated elegance of the old wooden decoys made by the shooting and carving legends of duck hunting’s glory days. Their decoys were tools, meant simply to fool ducks and endure the ravages of hunting the salt marshes and backwater bays of Chesapeake and Barnegat or the coastal waters off New England. They had to be rugged as well as functional. They were never meant to be pretty or decorative or sit on a mantle somewhere. Ironically, that’s exactly where you’ll find many of them today — decorating the homes of wealthy collectors, or on the catalog pages of world-famous auction houses like Guyette & Deeter. Depending on age, authenticity, rarity and condition, hand-hewn waterfowl decoys now fetch anywhere from a few hundred to several hundred thousand dollars for a single piece. In 2007, a collector paid the princely sum of $856,000 for a circa 1890 merganser hen decoy by renowned Massachusetts carver Lothrop Holmes. Many other listings indicate similar prices are not unusual. Avery’s fascination with their work finally led her to start carving in the style of the old masters. She marveled at their simplistic yet beautifully sculptured lines and strove to capture that quality in her own decoys. She studied their histories and their carving and painting techniques, and began to incorporate them into her own

“Carving keeps me close to my dad’s memory and all the fun we had together in those days.” — Jan Avery workflow. She became especially enamored of a few specific carvers and began to study their work. Like many artists, Avery spends a considerable amount of time in research before beginning a project. “The internet is a wonderful resource, but if you’re not careful it can really cut into your productivity,” she said. She recalls the time she became interested in the work of Charles Perdew (1874-1963), a carver whose name drops heavily in the world of antique collectibles. Avery wanted to learn more about his crow decoys. “Which,” she said, “led me to research, which led me to the internet, which led me to Pinterest. And that place, for me, is like going down a rat hole.” She’d originally gone into her studio to begin painting, but two hours later she was still on the computer and hadn’t touched a brush. “You can wander

endlessly for hours there,” she said. “On the other hand, it can lead to some pretty remarkable encounters.” It was on an internet decoy carvers forum that Avery discovered Syd Wood, another waterfowl carver who, like Avery, shared a passion for antique, hand-carved decoys. More specifically, he was a big fan of Lee Dudleystyle decoys, also one of Avery’s favorites. She ferreted Wood out on social media and began corresponding with him. They didn’t know it then, but the two would soon become close friends. Wood is a retired carpenter by trade but an old duck hunter at heart. He started carving in the early 1980s when hunters either bought decoys from known carvers or made their own. He couldn’t afford the prices back then, so he set about learning how to carve his own by reading old books he found in the local library in his hometown of Pocatello, Idaho. He said, as best he could remember, there was only one book that referenced decoy carving, so he checked it out a lot. He made his first decoys from lengths of 2-by-8 construction grade spruce floor joists, but when he realized three of them weighed 15 pounds, he figured he’d better find a lighter wood. As his carving progressed, he became fascinated with the work of the early hunter-carvers and strove to imitate their impressionistic style in size, shape and color. Wood said it was 30 years before he ever met another carver, but in the meantime, he just kept doing his own thing, carving reproduction decoys the best

Avery reproduction of an Eider duck. The original maker unknown, this decoy was likely carved on Mohegan Island, Maine, around 1900, and sold at a collector’s auction for $767,000. coloradocountrylife.coop



[feature] way he knew how. While his working decoys reflected the rustic, minimalist look of the old carvers, he promised his wife he would make her a decorative, fully-detailed, life-size Canada goose for the mantle. In addition to the basic shaping and sanding, it would require hours and hours of meticulous detail work, carving, layering and relieving individual body, wing and tail feathers with specialty hand tools and wood burners. He started the project in 1983 knowing full well it would be extremely time consuming, but it proved to be even more exhausting than he imagined. Nearly halfway through the carving he decided to put the gift goose aside to concentrate on more pressing projects, promising himself he’d return to it in the future, refreshed and reinvigorated. Then he met Avery on the internet, and an incredible friendship developed. “Meeting Jan was a miracle to me,” he said. We live over 500 miles apart, but I feel like I’ve known her since childhood.” He told me how they shared stories of their love for the outdoors, about hunting with their

fathers, the bird dogs they’d known and loved over the years, experiences in duck blinds, on pheasant and quail hunts and, of course, their love of carving. They were birds of a feather, brought together by the feathers of birds they both love. Shortly after they met on the internet, Jan bought one of Wood’s birds — a Dudley-style canvasback from a set of three he had carved. A bit later she bought a second, and Wood decided to just give her the third to keep the set intact. Later she bought a Dudley-style ruddy duck from him. One day, on something like a whim, she sent him photos of a blue-winged teal she carved to see what he thought. He must have liked what he saw because he asked her if she would be interested in collaborating with him on some decoys. He especially admired Avery’s ability to replicate the muted, weather-beaten colors and timeworn patina so characteristic of the old decoys. Together they worked out plans to make reproductions together and make them look as authentic as possible. In the months that followed, they teamed up on several reproductions with Wood designing the patterns and carving the bodies, which he then sent to Avery for painting and finishing. Together they crafted some beautifully finished Harry Shourds

brant geese, and an exquisitely executed northern eider goose, among others. In 2016, Avery and her husband, Dennis, drove out to Pocatello from their home in Windsor to meet Wood and his wife in person. They visited for hours, shared steaks on the “barbie” and spun more duck-hunting yarns and bird dog tales around the grill. Then, in 2017, Wood learned that an old bout with cancer had returned. He beat it years before but would have to undergo treatments again. It was about this time that Wood told Avery of the promise he made his wife, and his fears that he might not be able to complete the gift goose because of his health. It was more than halfway done, but still needed considerable feather carving and detailing before it could be painted and finished. He

Left: This canvasback reproduction was designed, carved and painted by Jan Avery. It is done in the style of Lee Dudley, whose birds — if you can find them — sell for upward of $60,000. Right: This is a replica of a Harry Shourds brant. The original sold at auction in 2003 for $4,541. 18



[ feature]

“I keep him carving and he keeps me painting. We’re birds of a feather.” – Jan Avery asked Avery if she could help. “Of course,” she said. “I’d consider it a privilege.” Wood shipped her the decoy and she began the meticulous task of carving in the dorsal and wing panels and flank feathers. Each one — and there are hundreds of them — had to be individually outlined with a burning tool, then intricately hand carved and relieved to lifelike realism before the painting process could begin. Several washes of acrylic paint were applied followed by the application of complex, finished colors to each feather. Finally, it had to be sealed with several coats of preservative. She finished the gift goose and shipped it off to her friend in late January of this year. It got there just in time for Wood to give it to his wife for Valentine’s Day — a promise kept. In March of this year, Avery got a new bird dog puppy and Wood was still undergoing chemo treatments but had just completed carving three more decoys for her to paint: a redhead drake and a pair of ring-necked ducks. She couldn’t wait to get started. “Syd and I agree God has brought us together for reason,” she said. “I keep him carving and he keeps me painting. We’re birds of a feather.” And, together they created some beautiful ducks to display. Dennis Smith, an avid hunter and fisherman, has written Colorado Country Life’s Outdoors column for more than 25 years.

Top: Jan Avery works in her studio. Bottom: Jan Avery and Syd Wood with their spouses during one of Avery’s visits to Pocatello, Idaho. Syd is in the wicker chair holding a cane; Jan is behind him. coloradocountrylife.coop




A Terrific Twist on Tots A new cookbook uses tots to create a twist to favorite dishes BY AMY HIGGINS RECIPES@COLORADOCOUNTRYLIFE.ORG


Your next meal will be the “tot” of the town with food created from Dan Whalen’s Tots! 50 Tot-ally Awesome Recipes from Totchos to Sweet Po-tot-o Pie cookbook. Whalen takes these heavenly spuds and incorporates them into savory appetizers, satisfying entrees and sweet desserts in surprising yet ingenious ways while using oodles of awesome tot puns along the way. Whalen also offers recipes for dips and homemade tater tots. Get tot-ally engrossed with your meal planning with this cookbook and try recipes like this one.

WIN A COPY You could win a copy of Tots! this month. Send your name, address and phone number to contests@ coloradocountrylife.coop to enter. Be sure to have “Tots” in the subject line. We will choose a winner on Monday, September 17.

FUN FACT Did You Know?

The term “tater tots” was created and trademarked by Ore-Ida in the 1950s, but it’s common to hear people refer to all brands by the name.



Shepherd’s Pie With a Totty Top 1 teaspoon vegetable or peanut oil 1 pound ground beef (or lamb) 1 medium onion, peeled and diced 2 medium carrots, peeled and diced 2 garlic cloves, minced 1 can (28 ounces) diced tomatoes with juices 1 cup corn kernels (fresh or frozen) 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar 2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme About 1 pound frozen tots (depending on the size of your baking dishes) 1 cup (4 ounces) shredded cheddar cheese Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Heat oil in a large frying pan over high heat. Add the ground beef and cook, stirring occasionally to break up the meat, until it is browned and cooked through, about 15 minutes. Transfer the meat to a plate, leaving the fat in the pan. Add the onion and carrots to the pan and cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until softened and lightly browned, about 15 minutes. Add the garlic and cook, stirring frequently, until fragrant and lightly golden, about 2 minutes. Add the tomatoes, corn, Worcestershire sauce, vinegar and thyme and stir to combine. Return the beef to the pan, bring the mixture to a simmer, and cook until flavors have melded and the mixture thickens slightly, about 15 minutes. Pour the beef mixture into an 11-by-7-inch casserole dish or divide it among 5 or 6 individual baking dishes. Top the beef mixture with tots, covering it evenly and making sure the tots don’t sink too far into the dish. Bake until the tots are golden brown on top, about 30 minutes. Remove shepherd’s pie(s) from the oven, top with the cheese, and bake until the cheese has melted, about 10 minutes.

Like Donuts? Give Rum-Glazed Donuts with Tot-Bacon Crunch a try. Get the recipe at coloradocountrylife.coop. coloradocountrylife.coop


Produce Bushels of Produce in Your Own Backyard Yes, you can grow fruit trees in Colorado BY VICKI SPENCER GARDENING@COLORADOCOUNTRYLIFE.ORG


I am often surprised when people say they can’t grow fruit trees in Colorado. Growing up along the Front Range, I have fond memories of playing in my grandmother’s miniature orchard. She grew several varieties of apples, cherries and peaches. She taught me that fruit trees are a long-term investment through the annual rituals of pruning, harvesting and canning. Even though it takes several years for trees to bear fruit, they will bring decades of enjoyment if cared for properly. After purchasing my first home, friends and family gave me saplings to get started. I couldn’t turn down free trees and, better yet, I knew they were acclimated to the area and produced delicious fruit. Today, most people buy trees at local garden or big box stores. If you want to make the best choices, it helps to do a little research first. Four things to consider are the tree’s hardiness, the length of time for cold weather dormancy, the length of the growing season and disease susceptibility. Trees that can survive minus 25 degrees and do well in most of our state are apple, sour cherry, plum and pear. Peaches and nectarines also grow well but suffer damage at minus 12 to minus 14 degrees unless planted in sheltered locations. In general, you will have more success by selecting varieties with shorter growing seasons. Colorado State University Extension Service suggests fruit trees suited to Colorado’s climate. I’ve had success with Red and Golden Delicious, Honeygold, Regent and Keepsake apples; Luscious pears; Montmorency tart cherries; Autumn Star and Madison peaches; and Toka plums. It’s important to note that some trees, like apple and pear, do not self-pollinate, so you need to plant more than one for cross-pollination.



Pruning is an important step in ensuring strong, healthy fruit trees. If you begin proper pruning while trees are young, they will only require moderate annual pruning, and the branches will be less susceptible to breakage when bearing fruit. Pruning is best done in late winter or early spring, just before buds break out. Even though well-pruned trees will be less likely to succumb to disease, you should keep an eye out for common diseases, such as fire blight, powdery mildew and Cytospora canker. Once your trees start producing, you will probably have more than you can eat. When I was young, we canned our fruit. Drying was also an alternative, but since we made jelly, canning was our preferred method of preservation. After freezers became affordable, my family switched to freezing fruit. It’s the simplest preservation method and the fruit retains much of its freshness and shape. We wash and dry the fruit, cut to desirable size, and sometimes add ascorbic acid to preserve the color. Then we freeze in bags at 0 degrees for 8 to 12 months. There are many benefits to growing your own fruit trees. The fruit tastes better picked right off your own tree, it’s healthier if you avoid pesticides and you can enjoy it for months with friends and family when you have abundant harvests. Gardener Vicki Spencer has an eclectic background in conservation, water, natural resources and more.

More Online: Read previous gardening columns

at coloradocountrylife.coop. Click on Gardening under Living in Colorado. coloradocountrylife.coop

Clean water for

Guatemalan villages

Give $35 to buy a water filter that lasts for 2 years to an underprivileged family in rural Guatemala









Electric cooperatives in Colorado and Oklahoma are joining forces to bring






first-time electricity to two remote villages in rural Guatemala this coming fall. Beyond providing the gift of light, the volunteer linemen going on this mission would like to present each household with a 5-gallon water filter that lasts for two years. The water filters, called “Eco Filtro,� are manufactured in Guatemala; the purchase of these filters will also aid the local economy. The goal is to buy 120 water filters and deliver one to each household that receives electricity.

Will you be a part of this mission by sponsoring a water filter for $35? To give online, visit: crea.coop/community-outreach/current-causes/ To send a check: Make it payable to Colorado Electric Educational Institute (CEEI) with Clean Water Fund in the memo. Mail it to: Colorado Rural Electric Association, 5400 Washington Street, Denver, CO 80216




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Joy and sorrow merge in the Colorado prairie sunrise BY DENNIS SMITH OUTDOORS@COLORADOCOUNTRYLIFE.ORG


I’m as awed as anyone with the majesty of our Rocky Mountains, but if there’s anything more humbling than a September sunrise on the Colorado short-grass prairie I have yet to see it. What, at any other time of day, seems a bland and boring, cactus-choked moonscape transforms at sunrise into an eye-popping panorama of astounding beauty. When the sun comes up on the grasslands, the whole prairie becomes awash in a sea of miraculous


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and another to arm the electronic switch before he shot. He drilled us on the procedure until he was satisfied we knew what to do, and then he took us hunting. We had to take his vehicle, a highly-modified four-wheeldrive van that accommodated his high-tech wheelchair and allowed him to shift, steer, accelerate and brake with electronic levers. It was a marvel of technological ingenuity and he drove it like a NASCAR champ.



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color — as if some master hand was painting the sky above and the earth below right before your eyes. It’s the kind of thing that can put a lump in your throat and leave you dazed with wonder. One September morning three years ago, the boys and I were bumping along a dusty prairie road on our way to a water hole where we knew antelope would hang out. We were volunteer guides with Outdoor Buddies, an all-volunteer organization that provides a variety of hunting, fishing, camping and other outdoor experiences for at-risk youth, disabled vets, mobility-disabled folks and others who may be deprived of outdoor recreational opportunities. Our guest hunter for the day, Paul, suffered from a degenerative neurological disorder that left him confined to a wheelchair and physically unable to squeeze the trigger on a conventional rifle, but he dearly loved to hunt. Not to be deterred, he had a hunting rifle fitted with an electronic device that required him to first sip, then puff, a breath of air through a small flexible tube to activate the trigger. It also required someone to steady the rifle on shooting sticks for him 24


He also took great pleasure in scaring the hell out of us with his driving skills, laughing like he hadn’t a care in the world. His joy was infectious. It was coming on daylight when Paul stopped the van on a rise overlooking the water hole and shut the engine down. The sun was creeping over the horizon, a blinding white orb that set the sky on fire and cloaked the land in a blanket of purple, crimson, gold and orange pastels. The four of us sat there, staring in wonder and disbelief at the beauty of it all. Paul turned to us and said, “I may never see anything this beautiful again.” His remark puzzled us until we learned Paul’s illness finally claimed him later that year. It’s the kind of thing that puts a lump in your throat and leaves you dazed in sorrow. Dennis Smith is a freelance outdoors writer and photographer whose work appears nationally. He lives in Loveland.

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Catch up at coloradocountrylife.coop. Click on Outdoors. coloradocountrylife.coop



Skylights can bring a little of the outside world indoors and make your living space more livable when they are installed correctly, but they can also impact your energy bills and comfort level.

The holidays are almost here and we’ve got you covered.

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Our Holiday Gift Guide informs and inspires readers as they shop for that perfect holiday gift.



One downside of skylights is they can add heat to your home during the summer and heat loss during the winter. The amount of impact depends on a number of elements, including the skylight’s energy rating, size, placement and quality of installation. You can check its energy efficiency by looking at the skylight’s NFRC Energy Performance Label, which shows four important pieces of the energy efficiency puzzle: • Insulation value (U-factor) • Ability to transmit solar heat (solar heat gain coefficient) • Ability to allow light to transfer (visible transmittance) • Air leakage Just as important as finding the right skylight is determining the proper size, number and placement. You want adequate light, but too much can make a room less functional on a bright day. Skylights on a steep, north-facing roof will reduce the unwanted solar heat gain in the summer, but this also reduces the desirable solar heat gain in winter. If you do your research and decide to move forward with new skylights, consider buying the best product your budget will accommodate, and find a contractor with experience and solid references to provide the installation. That said, even the best skylight has a much lower insulation value than a properly insulated attic. This column was co-written by Pat Keegan and Brad Thiessen of Collaborative Efficiency.

Space reservation deadlines: Sept. 24 (for Nov.) and Oct. 22 (for Dec.).

Contact Kris Wendtland at 303-902-7276 or advertising@coloradocountrylife.org coloradocountrylife.coop

Visit coloradocountrylife.coop to learn more about skylights and energy efficiency. Look under the Energy tab. SEPTEMBER 2018



TRUST. ANOTHER PRECIOUS RESOURCE WE’RE COMMITTED TO PRESERVING. Around here, there’s more to trust than making sure your lights come on when you flip the switch. We also must have information you can trust, whether it’s about local renewable energy options or ways to lower your bill. For more, visit TouchstoneEnergy.com.




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Please type or print your ad on a separate paper. Indicate how many months you would like your ad to run and which month to start. There is a minimum of 12 words at $2.63 per word/month. Be sure to include your full name and address for our records. Check MUST accompany this order or call to pay by credit card. Send your ad to: mail: Colorado Country Life 5400 Washington St., Denver, CO 80216 phone: 303-902-7276 fax: 303-455-2807 email: classifieds@coloradocountrylife.org



CHAIR CANING — Hand caning, machine caning, fiber rush caning. Pueblo West, 719-547-0723. chaanita@q.com (858-10-18)

(These opportunities have not been investigated by Colorado Country Life.)

ANTLERS ANTLER CHANDELIERS made only from REAL antlers. We are the manufacturer and we sell all of our products at wholesale prices; save as much as 60% from store prices. Many other antler products and mounts, including 56” elk mount, giant moose paddles, and elk antlers. Showroom open May through September in Granby, CO. 19 years at this location, over 919 satisfied customers! Designers: We can provide you a single item or a whole houseful. Call ! (970) 627-3053 (085-09-18)

HEALTH FOOD STORE & DELI: 2 turnkey businesses. Strong income/customer base. Gunnison, Colorado (970-641-5175), leave name & number. (252-12-18) LIFE-CHANGING EXPERIENCES! Leverage PROVEN marketing, business, and health/wellness resources! Earn direct/passive/residual income! Visit www. VirtualBillBoard.biz Or TEXT moreinfo To 41242 (939-09-18)

CLOCK REPAIR & RESTORATION www.clockrepair andrestoration.com Antique and modern. DURANGO AREA. Original designer jewelry. bob. scott@usa.net Call Robert 970-247-7729. (109-11-18)

ENERGY SOLAR WATER SYSTEMS — Livestock or any remote location. 3-10 gpm. Variable speed. Call Peterson High Reach for free quote. 719-688-0081. Windmills available. (316-10-18)

FLEA MARKETS DURANGO OPEN-AIR FLEA MARKET every Sunday at LaPlata County Fairgrounds — 25th& Main. Setup 6-8am. Shopping 8a-3p. May 6-Nov. 4, 2018. 970-385-0385 for questions. (935-10-18)

FOR SALE OXYGEN CONCENTRATORS—$400 with warranty. Also sell portable concentrators and oxygen supplies. Repair and service of equipment. Aspen Concentrator Repair Service. 719-471-9895 (040-09-18)




STOP FEEDING PRAIRIE DOGS. We’ll rent hunting rights from you. Seriously looking for duck & goose habitat. Encourage young sportsmen by providing safe, private access. You make the rules. 303460-0273 (069-12-18)

I BUY COLORADO LOTS & LAND. Quick cash. Call Bobby 843-564-8438. www.sellyourvacantland fast.com (941-09-18)

OLD COLORADO LIVESTOCK brand books prior to 1925. Call Wes, 303-757-8553. (889-02-19)

HELP WANTED LEGITIMATE WORK AT HOME opportunity. No sales, investment, risk. Training/website provided. Monthly income plus bonuses, benefits. Call Carrie 303-579-4207, www. WorkAtHomeUnited.com/ OurAbundance (932-02-19)

LIVESTOCK COLORADO INDEPENDENT CATTLEGROWERS ASSOCIATION represents Independent Colorado Ranchers! Join! www.coloica.com 1-719980-0460, cattlegrowers@ coloica.com (936-03-19)

REAL ESTATE 35-ACRE MOUNTAIN PROPERTY — $110,000. S. of Guffey, Colo., in Fremont County. Wooded mountainside & grassy meadow. Magnificent views. 719-495-3295, RBKarabians@ hotmail.com (370-09-18) COMMERCIAL PROPERTY in downtown Lyons with investment possibilities. Large lot. Room to expand. Current tenant has 3-yr lease. Deedj2017@ gmail.com (940-10-18)

NEAR McPHEE RESERVOIR, town of Dolores, Colorado — 14,000 sqft masonry building on large city lot. Great opportunity for boat & RV storage. Bring your ideas. High ceilings & roll-up doors. $28,000 current income. Asking $299,900. donschwatken@hotmail. com, 520-444-5153, Craig’s List: 6594084666 (942-09-18) WATER COLORADO L.L.C. — Looking to purchase water in Colorado. Buy it. Sell it. Rent it. Please call 970-493-4227 or contact www.water colorado.com (363-09-18) WE BUY LAND and/or mineral rights. CO TX NM KS. 1-800-316-5337 (099-10-18)

WANTED TO BUY CAST-IRON COOKWARE (Wagner & Griswold). Pyrex. Old toys in good condition. Vintage signs. Anything cowboy and Indian – hats, boots, spurs, rugs, etc. Antiques, collectibles, furniture, glassware, etc. We come to you! 970-759-3455 or 970-565-1256. (871-01-19) NAVAJO RUGS, old and recent, native baskets, pottery. Tribal Rugs, Salida. 719-539-5363, b_inaz@ hotmail.com (817-12-18)

OLD GAS AND OIL items: Gas pumps, advertising signs, globes, etc. Pieces, parts, etc. considered. Also 1932-34 Ford cars and trucks, parts and pieces, too. Any condition. Brandon, 719-250-5721. (519-11-18) Old model airplane engines & unbuilt kits. Will pay cash & pick up. Don, 970-599-3810 (866-10-18) OLD POCKET WATCHES— working or non-working and old repair material. Bob 719-859-4209. (870-12-19) WANT TO PURCHASE MINERAL and other oil/ gas interests. Send details to: PO Box 13557, Denver, CO 80201 (402-04-19) WANT TO WIN $25? Mail the number of classified ads to classifieds@colorado countrylife.org for your chance to win. Put WIN $25 in the subject line. Include name/address/phone number. Deadline NOON Sept. 14. WANTED: JEEP CJ OR WRANGLER. Reasonably priced. No rust buckets. 888-735-5337 (099-10-18) WE PAY CASH for mineral and oil/gas interests, producing and non-producing. 800-733-8122 (099-02-19)

COLORADO AT PLAY PHOTO CONTEST IS OPEN FOR SUBMISSIONS! We want your photos that fit any of these four categories: Water at Play: Any photo (with or without people) of water.

Active Play: Photos that capture motion.

People and/or Pets at Play: Photos of subjects enjoying Colorado.

Settings for Play: Any outdoor seasonal shot of Colorado.

Visit coloradocountrylife.coop and look under Contests for full rules and information on how to enter. 28



[ funny stories] COLORADO COUNTRY LIFE

READERS PHOTOS Send us a selfie with the magazine!

WINNERS: Ha Thi Huynh and Eric Kuhlman, members of Empire Electric, take CCL to the world’s 3rd highest peak.

Mountain View Electric member Lisa Webb takes CCL to Logan Pass in Glacier National Park, Montana.

CCL October 2016 feature subject, Ruth Wilson, travels to Slavska, Ukraine, to participate in a music festival. Wilson is a member of Empire Electric.

Ingrid Ruroden, a Poudre Valley REA member, visits Sitka, Alaska, with CCL.

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 email the photo and your name and address to info@ coloradocountrylife.org. We’ll draw one photo to win $25 each month. The next deadline is Friday, September 14. NAME, ADDRESS AND CO-OP MUST ACCOMPANY PHOTO. This month’s winners are Ha Thi Huynh and Eric Kuhlman. They took Colorado Country Life on their trip to Kenya. See all of the submitted photos on Facebook at Julie Iacovetto, a Yampa Valley Electric member, travels to Prince facebook.com/COCountryLife. Rupert, British Columbia, Canada. coloradocountrylife.coop

My friend Mitch owned a vintage Britishmade Austin-Healey that had the steering wheel on the right side of the vehicle’s dashboard. One day he came up with a funny prank. He rigged a fake steering wheel on the left side of the car, then dressed up Dinx, his docile, old hound, in a coat, hat and sunglasses, and placed him in front of the fake steering wheel. He then drove his car up to intersections, stopped and ducked down beneath the dashboard. You can imagine the shock and dismay of people driving up next to a car driven by a rather well-dressed dog. Jerry L. Baker, Colorado Springs My husband is an avid hunter, so I wasn't surprised to see our 4-year-old son pretending to hunt game with his invisible gun one afternoon. After “shooting” into the air several times, he turned to me and said, “Mama, I shotted a bird, way up there.” “Nice,” I said, “what kind?” With confidence, he replied, “A mohawk.” Kelsey Gilbert, Monument After being out in the yard playing, my friend’s grandson came running into the house and said, “Grandpa, I got to go really bad!” My friend pointed to the restroom where his grandson went in without hesitation. A few minutes later the grandson came out smiling. He said to his grandpa, “Grandpa, if you are an American when you go into the bathroom and you’re an American when you come out of the bathroom, what are you when you’re in the bathroom?” My friend had no idea so he asked his grandson, “What are you when you’re in the bathroom?” The grandson smiled broadly and said, “European!” Lorraine Straw, Peyton 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. Send your 2018 stories to Colorado Country Life, 5400 Washington St., Denver, CO 80216 or email funnystories@ coloradocountrylife.org. Don’t forget to include your mailing address, so we can send you a check.

$15 SEPTEMBER 2018



GEAR UP FOR THE GREAT OUTDOORS This fall get outdoors and be sure to take the latest Colorado-made gear with you.

Fitted for Fanatic Flyers

The Total Package Sturdy and convenient, the Tailgate N Go Big Johnson Package is the ultimate outdoor kitchen. Imagine having your stove, grill, cutting boards, bottle opener, food storage and many of the other luxuries you find in your kitchen at home in one portable box. The Grand Junction-based company offers a swing out hitch so you can easily access the TNG from your truck’s tailgate, or you can simply lift and carry the box to your ideal location. You can choose from a variety of colors to personalize your TNG. Cost is $1,850. For more information, visit tailgatengo.com.

Your Passport to Discovery

Across the road from the San Miguel River in Telluride you’ll find Dead Drift Fly. Here, two brothers from Wyoming share their love of fly-fishing through an assortment of apparel and accessories that would reel in any angler. The brothers use an environmentallyfriendly process to create their products and ensure their ink doesn’t run down the drains and into fishing waters. What transpires are beautifully crafted hats, t-shirts, hoodies and other trappings that are inspired by the western lifestyle. For more information, call 406-579-9179 or visit deaddriftfly.com.

Cool Creek Companion Create a little more legroom in your kayak, canoe or raft by using the CreekKooler to hold your food and drinks. The insulated CreekKooler attaches to your watercraft and floats alongside you, allowing you to ditch the traditional cooler on your fishing outings. With a 30-quart capacity, the CreekKooler can hold 30 12-ounce cans and 20 pounds of ice under its watertight lid. It also has four drink holders and a mini flag holder. Cost is $165. For more information, visit kanoolerproducts.com.

The next time a journey takes you to one of Colorado’s 41 state parks or 15 fish hatcheries ask for a free CPW Passport. This Colorado Parks and Wildlife booklet offers information about each park, allows you to record visit details and is your ticket to receiving a unique stamp from each park visited. When you receive your last stamp, have a park or hatchery representative certify your booklet and you will receive a completion prize. For more information, visit cpw.state.co.us/Passport.






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ITEM 68053/62160/62496/62516/60569 shown

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Side tray sold separately.



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ITEM 69269/97080 shown


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ITEM 61615/60637 95275 shown

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Profile for American MainStreet Publications

Colorado Country Life September 2018 White River  

Colorado Country Life September 2018 White River

Colorado Country Life September 2018 White River  

Colorado Country Life September 2018 White River

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