Reid Calhoun '17

Working for the Henry's Fork Foundation under the A. Paul Knight Memorial Program in Conservation was such an incredible experience this summer. Among many tasks for the Henry's Fork Foundation, I collected water samples weekly in order to keep tabs on the water quality of the Henry's Fork River, I aided in monitoring a fish trap on the Buffalo River ladder in order to better understand trout migration patterns in the watershed area, and surveyed anglers to collect economic and ecological data related to the Teton River fishery. I learned so much about the reality of conserving and protecting a watershed. While anglers want the water to be managed in such a way that best benefits fish, farmers want the water to be used for irrigation, and many others also have water rights at stake. I was able to witness firsthand the complex small scale politics related to water management, and the harsh reality of climate change and its effect on coldwater fisheries. While I have always been interested in pursuing a career that helps the planet, this summer has greatly increased my interest in natural resource management.

In addition to a great work experience, I got to see so much of the greater Yellowstone area in such a short time through hiking, backpacking, and fishing. I fished practically every night after work. While I most often fished the Henry's Fork, I frequently fished the Madison and Teton River. I made a couple of trips to fish the Yellowstone River, and made a few backcountry trips to reach rarely fished water throughout the greater Yellowstone area. On my way to and from Idaho, I visited the Badlands, Glacier, and Banff. This summer afforded me the opportunity to see much of America's most beautiful land in just a short weeks. Although this summer has passed way too fast, I cannot wait to return to Idaho.