I began my first law school job in 1962 and water law is the only subject I have taught every year since then. Though I am enthusiastic about all the courses I teach, I confess that water law remains my favorite. I have often asked myself why, because few subjects are considered more peripheral to the central mission of the law schools. In the East and Midwest the course is rarely taught, and in the West-where it has long been a staple- it is pretty much treated as a "nuts-and-bolts" offering for students who will practice in appropriation doctrine states.

I offer four reasons for teaching, and studying, water law.