Sallie Dean Shatz

City Creek––Journey from the headwaters to the Great Salt Lake
A multimedia slideshow documenting the river, paired with contributed and collected audio

Life is like a river; it flows, freezes, melts, rushes, slides underground, slams into dams and rests calmly; yet it always moves onward.

City Creek has been a part of my life since 1995. I have taken daily walks along it with my dog and sat with it when I needed to think. I remember gazing at the Comet Hale-Bopp while sitting by the water tanks on Capitol Hill--a poignant moment that altered the course of my life. Those tanks are one of the diversions the river takes on its way to human consumption.

I invited others to participate in every phase of this project, which imbued it with a certain fluidity, enabling it to exceed my own vision. By allowing others to walk with me, edit the concept and alter its pace, it opened the door for serendipity to come out and play. Seventy-five people were with me during this adventure and no step was made alone.

City Creek meanders its way through canals, diversions, levies, nature preserves and wilderness study areas until it seeps into the Great Salt Lake. In the same vein, I have grown and traveled with this project, and in the end, have become a part of something larger.

The rivers from all seven canyons that flow through this city to the Great Salt Lake make their journey in twenty-four hours. Like our lives, they appear constant at a glance, but they move quickly and are constantly changing. The longer a life or a river touches you, the more you understand its richness. While few will ever see City Creek in its entirety, slowing down with it encourages new experiences with a river that is integral to our city.


City Creek