1901: A Canyon Odyssey
1901
There beneath the August sun
A daring survey undertaken on the fly
Colorado would request
Divert the river water west
For The Uncompahgre Valley was too dry
There’d been one attempt before
and they needed to know more
Than what Bryant saw from base camps on the rim
When the challenge whet their thirst
two men planned to be the first
to take the canyon floor route cut from deep within
There's only one way the water flows
Through a passage no one knows
Heading down the Canyon Black
They could never turn their back
Staring down the Barrel of the Gunnison
The journey started as they planned
with support from a third man
who hiked the the old trail high above the river’s hood
’til they came upon a narrow
at the jaws of the Falls of Sorrow
with one way out, they took the only way they could
Diving deep into the churn
maybe never to return
The pair could only hope to breathe the air again
The angry river turned and tossed
and the two might have been lost
deep below the surface of the Gunnison
There's only one way the water flows
Through a passage no one knows
Heading down the Canyon Black
They could never turn their back
Staring down the Barrel of the Gunnison
Gunnison!
Now the story has been told
and while the river still runs cold
The water gets to where it once had never been
As for whether they escaped
they made it out just bruised and scraped
The two men never would forget the Gunnison
There's only one way the water flows
Through a passage no one knows
Heading down the Canyon Black
They could never turn their back
Staring down the Barrel of the Gunnison