|[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note [Dutch]|
|The Colorado River, Mojave language 'Aha Kwahwat, Spanish: Río Colorado (Red River or Red-like River), is a river in the Southwestern United States and northwestern Mexico, approximately 1,450 miles (2,330 km) long, draining a part of the arid regions on the western slope of the Rocky Mountains. The watershed of the Colorado River covers 246,000 sq mi (640,000 km2) in parts of seven U.S. states and two Mexican states. The natural course of the river flows from the Continental Divide at La Poudre Pass in Rocky Mountain National Park, Colorado, into the Gulf of California between the Baja California peninsula and mainland Mexico.|
Large diversions of water for irrigation, and to a much lesser extent to supply cities combined with significant evaporation losses from its reservoirs have dewatered the lower course of the river downstream of Yuma, AZ, above the Colorado River Delta, resulting in it no longer consistently reaching the Gulf of California. More than 20 major dams have been built on the Colorado River and its tributaries.
The Colorado River rises on the Continental Divide at La Poudre Pass, in Rocky Mountain National Park, about 25 mi (40 km). north of Lake Granby. At the river's headwater, the Continental Divide forms the boundary between the Atlantic Ocean and Pacific Ocean watersheds of North America, between Colorado's Grand and Larimer counties, and the northern boundary of Rocky Mountain National Park.
The river's first diversion is here at its headwater. The Grand Ditch redirects water from the Never Summer Mountains, which would have flowed into the Colorado River, to instead flow across the divide through La Poudre Pass to irrigate farmland to the east.
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