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Showing posts from 2009

Wilderness Passion

What is it that makes me so passionate about wilderness? I had my first understanding of wilderness when I was 12 years old and in Girl Scouts. I had been visiting wilderness for my entire life with my family, but didn’t necessarily understand that those some of those cool wild places we went where wilderness areas. I grew up in southwest Missouri on the edge of the prairie and the other edge the Ozarks. The Mark Twain National Forest Wilderness and Buffalo River areas were our stomping ground when we wanted to go backpacking. My mom was my Girl Scout leader and she and another woman would take our troop backpacking twice a year. We would rotate trips between Piney Creek, Hercules, Buffalo River, Hercules and Big Piney Wilderness areas.  While visiting the Buffalo River in northern Arkansas specifically, I remember the stories from my dad. He had told me about how he helped to inventory that land for possible wilderness designation when he was in his 20s.  I have vivid memories of feel

Letter to the Editor - Wilderness

Dear friends, Wilderness (with a capitol ‘w’) proposals have been brought to our attention during the past few weeks here in the Valley.  I hope you are educating yourselves and understand the opportunity that is present for us to make an incredible impact on our environment, our culture and our selves by encouraging Congress to pass the Hidden Gems Wilderness bill.  We are defined by our landscapes – it’s our clean water, clean air, recreation opportunities, our wildlife, our mountains, and our rivers who make us who we are -  we are all part of our ecological  and land community.  As members of the land community we are charged with being stewards of it and protecting it from future degradation. People in our valley appreciate having public land to play in more than most people in the country.  Hikers, bikers, para gliders, skiers (alpine, Nordic, backcountry, etc.), river runners, fishermen, hunters, snowmobilers, dirt bikers, ATV drivers, horseback riders, and the list goes on.  I