Phase one of Río Baker–Grand Canyon exchange a success!
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Rios to Rivers at Caleta Tortel
From the Andes to the Pacific Ocean: Ríos to Rivers' triumphant arrival to the Río Baker delta.
Ríos to Rivers is proud to announce the successful completion of our first exchange expedition to Chile's Río Baker. It was an incredible, enriching trip that gave students the ability think critically about all aspects of Chile's controversial hydroelectricity debate.

Colorado Rocky Mountain School students and teachers hit the ground running in Santiago. They met the CEO of HidroAysén, the development company that proposes five dams on Patagonia's Ríos Baker & Pascua; leaders of the environmental opposition to the dams; and electrical engineers who argued for and against the feasibility of alternatives such as solar and wind power.
CRMS students and Daniel Fernández in the HidroAysén office
Meeting with Daniel Fernández, CEO of HidroAysén.
The students then traveled south to Cochrane, where members of Club Naútico Escualo welcomed them into host families and joined them on a kayaking trip down the Río Baker. Language was a considerable barrier, but as the young kayakers paddled, they discovered other ways to communicate. â€œThe river became our common language,” said Riley Ames, a junior at CRMS.
Cleo Ulatowski
"It was one thing to learn about dams from an analytic perspective, but totally different to experience the river and meet the people who would be affected." Cleo Ulatowski, CRMS senior.
Our group of 23 kayaks and two rafts paddled for five days to arrive at Caleta Tortel, where the Río Baker meets the Pacific Ocean. We camped on the property of homesteaders along the river and learned how the region was settled. Antonio Horvath, Senator for the region of Aysén and a staunch opponent of the dams, joined us for the first day and talked with students about the politics of the hydroelectric debate. Brian Reid, a limnologist studying the Baker’s sediments, rowed a support raft and provided a scientific perspective on the potential impact of the dams.

Students finished their trip with a vist to the remote Río Pascua, where HidroAysén has proposed three dams. They met Hernan Guelet, a homesteader who refuses to sell his land to the dam-building company, and spent an afternoon on the edge of the Pascua writing in journals and reflecting on their journey.
Senator Horvath Rowing on the Baker
Antonio Horvath, Senator for the region of Aysén, joined us on the Río Baker! See the news story.
Cleo and Camilo on the Baker
Friendships that cross continents: we can't wait to reunite our Chilean and US students in the Grand Canyon in August 2013! Please help us raise $50,000 to pay for the Chilean students' trip.
Josefina Ruiz
Watch the story about our Río Baker trip on TV Canal Santa María.
Rodrigo Poliche
Meet our newest Chilean team members, Rodrigo Poliche, a filmmaker, and Josefina Ruiz, an environmental lawyer.
Check out the newspaper, radio, and television programs featuring Ríos to Rivers and its students on our new Press Page.
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René Muñoz
René Muñoz welcomes Ríos to Rivers students into his home along the Río Baker.
Ríos to Rivers is indebted to the numerous individuals and organizations who have helped us reach this point. We are especially grateful for the generous welcome we received from the citizens and community leaders of Aysén, who have repeatedly expressed their respect for our program, the benefits of which have touched not only local students, but entire communities.

The power inherent in uniting young kayakers to learn about culture, the environment, and the value of free-flowing rivers has surpassed all expectations. It's been a fantastic learning experience for all of us, students, leaders, teachers, filmmakers, and writers.
"Thank you to everyone who made this possible. And this is only the beginning!" Yonathan Vargas, Club Naútico Escualo
Special thank you to the Chilean Army for transporting all of our kayaking gear and rafts between Cochrane and Caleta Tortel!
Thank you to our newest supporters:
Claudia Altamirano & Roberto Haro
Hugo Altamirano & Amalia Caceres
Patricio Astudillo
Baker Patagonia Aventura
Rodrigo A. Barros Utreras
Fernando Chible
Miriam Chible & Café Ricer
Paula Christensen
Club Naútico Escualo
Colorado Rocky Mountain School
Conservacion Patagonica
Luis Donoso
Bill Elzey
Entre Hielos Lodge
Sonia Estrada Burgos
Patricio Segura
Daniel Fernández & HidroAysén
Leslie Forman
Carlos Garrido
Claudia Gonzalez & Manuel Menendez
Daniel Gonzalez
Michael Gregory
Hernan Guelet & Richard Guelet
María Paz Hargraves Muñoz
Hatch River Expeditions
Senator Antonio Horvath Kiss
Antonio Horvath, Jr.
Rene Hermosilla
Marisol Inostroza
David Kashinski
John Burth Thomas Lancaster Oliveros
Sara Larraín
Francisco Javier Lavín García
Jonathan Leidich
Gladys Leighton Pizarro
Liceo Austral Lord Cochrane
Mallín Colorado Ecolodge
Christian Medina
Richard Moore
Municipalidad de Cochrane
Mauricio Muñoz
René Muñoz
Selma Oliveros Jaramillo
Guillermo Opazo Quiroz
Patagonia Adventure Expeditions
Rodrigo Poliche
Arturo Quinto
Radio Río Baker
Radio Santa María
Giorgio Raggi Ansaldo
Brian Reid & Sunny
Carmen Judith Rial Sandoval
Roberto Román & EcoMaipo
Eduardo Romero
Hugh Rudnick
Josefina Ruiz Catalan
Patricio Salinas & Marcela Opazo
Lalo Sandoval
Israel Saravia Oñate
Anne Teague
Lito Tejada-Flores
Tortel Host Families
Patricio Ulloa
Samuel Ulloa
Francisca Vargas
Veronica Venegas
Noel Vidal Landeros
Linde Waidhofer
Saludos y muchas gracias,

Susan Munroe
Ríos to Rivers Operations Director
And the Ríos to Rivers Team
Copyright © 2013 Rios to Rivers, All rights reserved.
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