James Nielson (right) and his younger brother Craig on their first trip down the San Rafael River in 1964 as teenagers. They made the raft from lumber scraps and barbed wire and took automobile tires as life preservers. They navigated their way with poles. The photograph shows their crude raft took on water, but it still floated. James Nielson loves the river and as an adult, became the Mosquito and Weed Department Director for Emery County. In his opinion the one feature that represents all of Emery County is the San Rafael River. It flows from the west end of the county to the east end. Most of the streams that provide water to the towns in Emery County flow into it, and it eventually flows into the Colorado.
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