Ensuring a next generation of river stewards

Are student field trips a thing of the past? With skyrocketing bus costs and the expectation that educators pack as much standards-related content into the school day as possible, many schools are viewing field trips as unattainable. However, nothing replaces the social and educational perspectives gained through firsthand experiences.

The Poudre Heritage Alliance (PHA) provides grant funds to K-12 school teachers in Larimer and Weld County to hire buses and pay entry fees to bring their students on field trips to the Cache la Poudre River National Heritage Area (CALA).

Our mission is simple – to help youth understand and value the Poudre River and their water heritage, ensuring a next generation of river stewards.

Learning in Our Watershed Solo Field Trip Program- Call for Educators – $1,000 stipend available!

The Poudre Heritage Alliance is creating an opportunity for students to explore the Cache la Poudre River Heritage Area even if classrooms and buses are closed due to the pandemic. We are transitioning our Learning in Our Watershed field trip program into a self-guided learning experience.
Starting in Fall 2020, teachers, scout leaders, and home educators can ask their students to walk or bike a predetermined route on the Poudre Trail and complete a series of questions and activities that align with state standards and relate to the surrounding environment.
This program provides the double benefit of getting students out of the house and engaged with local cultural and natural resources, and allowing teachers to provide a creative learning experience without adding to their own heavy workload. We can ensure the next generation of river stewards even in a pandemic!
Local educators – we need you! Help us develop curriculum for our new self-guided Learning in Our Watershed program and receive a $1,000 stipend. The Poudre Heritage Alliance is looking for four educators with expertise in different subjects to assist with the program. Any K-12 educators in Weld or Larimer Counties can apply, though preference will be given to applicants who teach 4th grade and/or have experience creating place-based curriculum. Please submit your application by Friday, July 10, 2020.

Learning In Our Watershed



•Expand opportunities for youth to directly experience and come to appreciate the Cache la Poudre River National Heritage Area (CALA).


  • Students and teachers visit CALA for the first time
  • Students and teachers enhance knowledge of CALA and National Heritage Areas
  • Participants express interest and return to CALA for more experiences after program
  • Teachers develop awareness or understanding of CALA as a resource for youth activities/learning
  • PHA outreach to the public, partners and schools

Elements of Learning in Our Watershed Program

  • All K-12 schools that are located in Weld or Larimer Counties qualify to submit an application to visit approved sites.
  • The field trips are designed to foster the study of water, water law and its relevance to future water security, water management and/or to help develop a “sense of place” – the Poudre River corridor.
  • 17 sites or annual water-related festivals within the CALA are automatically “approved” for field trip destinations, including: Centennial Village, the Environmental Learning Center (ELC), Greeley Museum, Children’s Water Festivals in Fort Collins and Greeley, the Poudre Learning Center, and more. Other destinations may be approved on a case-by-case basis.
  • Grants are approved while funding remains. However, funding is limited, so we hope to be able to expand this program and bring more children to the Poudre River.

The Campaign for Cache

The Poudre Heritage Alliance (PHA) raises awareness about water issues and connects people to their water heritage in the Cache la Poudre River National Heritage Area (CALA) through a variety of programs that promote, engage, and inspire!