Bitter Waters: The Struggles of the Pecos River by Patrick Dearen has been released.
The first book-length environmental history of the Pecos River has been published,
culminating almost seven years of work sponsored by Pecos River Resolution Corporation
Bitter Waters: The Struggles of the Pecos River by Patrick Dearen was released in March
by University of Oklahoma Press. The book explores man’s influence on the river throughout its
926 miles from its New Mexico headwaters to its confluence with the Rio Grande at Amistad
Reservoir on the Texas-Mexico border. Bitter Waters also identifies the river’s many issues and
the prospects for solutions.
In keeping with PRRC’s non-partisan focus, Dearen’s book has been endorsed by
officials in both states. Ray Willis, New Mexico’s commissioner on the Pecos River
Commission, calls Bitter Waters “a thought-provoking study” and a “must-read.” His Texas
counterpart on the Commission, Rick Tate, describes the book as “full of facts and numbers but a
comfortable read. As author Patrick Dearen shows, the current and future demands on the Pecos
will most likely bring on some great challenges.”
Carter Smith, executive director of Texas Parks and Wildlife Department, observed that
Bitter Waters offers an artesian well of information that will captivate the leisurely and
scholarly-minded reader alike. . . . Whether you worry about the future of our wild things and
wild places, depend upon the river for your land or your livelihood, or simply care for a tough
old, meandering river, this book needs to be at the top of your reading list.”
PRRC is indebted to the many Friends of PRRC whose financial support made this book
possible. A generous contribution by N.S. Haley Memorial Library allowed the publisher to
issue Bitter Waters in hardcover.
Bitter Waters is available for purchace at University of Oklahoma Press here. Online booksellers
also carry the title in both print and ebook editions.
In conjunction with the completion of Patrick Dearen’s manuscript, Bitter Waters: The Pecos River’s Struggles, Russell S. Johnson and Morgan Johnson of the law firm McGinnis Lochridge have written a paper titled “Texas Law Affecting The Pecos River.” Furthermore, Michelle Henrie, founder of the law firm MHenrie Land Water Law, has written a paper titled “New Mexico Law Affecting The Pecos River.” Today, Pecos River Resolution Corporation (PRRC) is publishing these papers on our website. Links can be found on the right at our homepage. In concert with the publication of Bitter Waters: The Pecos River’s Struggles by University of Oklahoma Press in March 2016, these papers will also be housed at the Western History Collections at University of Oklahoma Libraries. Russell L. Johnson, Morgan Johnson, and Michelle Henri are outstanding lawyers in their fields, which include water law. These papers were prepared at the request of PRRC and are outstanding and invaluable additions in PRRC’s mission.
Culminating five years of research and writing on behalf of PRRC, Patrick Dearen has signed a contract with the University of Oklahoma Press for publication of Bitter Waters: The Pecos River's Struggles.
The work is scheduled for release in March 2016.