Steven Speicher

Steven is web developer and designer living and working in Seattle. Originally from the Great Plains, Steven's roots are deeply embedded in the Platte River. He graduated from the University of Nebraska - Lincoln in Film and Environmental Studies and stayed around the state for several years. Steven's toolbag consists of web development/design, video production, and time-lapse photography. His cat is his most trusted desk companion.

Steven's Work

Many early bridge builders constructed embankments out into the Platte River, shortening the total length of the bridge and reducing construction costs and labor. The constrained banks make the river more narrow, creating faster currents and deeper channels.

Explore the Platte River in Nebraska by sorting and searching flow rates recorded throughout the state.

Nebraska’s capital city has a strong economy, a well-respected university and a vibrant downtown. But from a water supply standpoint, Lincoln has always been a little precarious.

Like all good things, it began with a flowchart.

Compare and contrast panoramic images through three seasons at Mormon Island, a wet meadow habitat in central Nebraska.

Active management on the central Platte promotes and sustains wildlife and plant diversity in a landscape matrix of wetlands, river habitat, agricultural fields, and sandpit and gravel mining operations.

This last March marked three years of collecting images in the Platte Basin. I like to think of this anniversary as a line in the sand, a turning point for what the Platte Basin Timelapse project is and can be.

A series of bathtubs dot Wyoming’s North Platte River, filling and releasing water for summer irrigation, power generation, and recreation. During western expansion, it became necessary to control the river, building dams and reservoirs that helped to regulate flow between seasons and wet and dry years.

In September 2013, it began to rain in Colorado. And it didn’t stop. Northwest of Fort Collins, the North Fork of the Cache La Poudre River soon carried record amounts of water. In just a few days, flows leapt from three cubic feet per second (cfs) to more than 1000 cfs when the upstream dam could not hold any more water and began to spill over.

Lateral erosion of banks is a defining characteristic to any braided stream like the Platte. As water moves downstream, banks are transformed as water tends to spread out over the broad, shallow valley of the Platte River. Over the course of a year, our camera unexpectedly observed this happening at a camera location owned and managed by the Platte River Recovery Implementation Program.

Located at the bottleneck of North America’s central flyway, Nebraska’s Platte River faces significant challenges. Key groups like the Audubon Society’s Rowe Sanctuary and federally-mandated Platte River Recovery Implementation Program, along with many other organizations, are working to protect the river and conserve habitat for the endangered whooping crane, least tern, and threatened piping plover through conservation and education.

Driving into Mullen Nebraska, in the heart of the Sandhills, the wind howled outside our Suburban as the sun set over a vast landscape. The few hundred residents of the biggest little town in Hooker County pride themselves on hospitality—a hospitality that the weariest of travelers would certainly have come to love, providing a brief reprieve from powerful gusts.

Many would assume Little Salt Creek to be little more than a small stream for water to run through with no more than the occasional duck along it. Though it lies only a few yards from a gravel road, which frequently growls with single car traffic through the mornings and afternoon, it is filled with a more life than I could have guessed.