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.

Apply for Field Trip Grants

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!