“It pleases me, loving rivers.” Raymond Carver
The San Pedro is one of two rivers which flows north from Mexico into the United States. Its headwaters are in Sonora and it flows about 150 miles from there to its confluence with the Gila River. It is the last major, free flowing, undammed river in the American Southwest. Being used to all three forks of the magnificent Yuba, I was unimpressed when I first met the San Pedro. I soon developed an appreciation, however, even when it was just a trickle.
A few weeks into monsoon season, I visited the San Pedro again. I’ve never seen it like this. When I was still a few hundred yards away I could hear its roar–a sound I’d never heard before from this river. I spent the early morning navigating its slippery banks, feeling the thirsty cottonwoods breathe their thanks.