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R.I.P. Micah True

If you’ve read Born To Run, then you probably remember the story of Micah True, the ultrarunner who lived in Copper Canyon with the Tarahumara tribe. Sadly, True’s body was found this weekend after he had gone missing during a solo 12 mile run in New Mexico’s Gila National Forest. The cause of death is still unknown.

To read more about the tragedy, click on over to ABC News.

April 2, 2012 | The World Is On Fire! | Continue Reading | Comments { 1 }

NPS RANGER KILLED

Sad way to start off 2012. If you’ve been watching the television, you might have heard about Margaret Anderson, the Mount Rainier Park Ranger that was shot down and killed on New Year’s Day. Rangers had set up a checkpoint between the Longmire and Paradise areas in the park to ensure that drivers had the proper tires and tire chains for their vehicles.The gunman, now identified as Benjamin Colton Barnes, blew through the checkpoint and then sped toward an area called Paradise where Anderson and another ranger had parked their vehicle to serve as another roadblock. Barnes jumped out of his car and opened fire, killing Anderson and missing the other ranger.

Authorities found Benjamin Colton Barnes’ body yesterday, face down in a river in the park. Read more here.

January 3, 2012 | The World Is On Fire! | Continue Reading | Comments { 1 }

New Jersey Bear Hunt

According to state Department of Environmental Protection spokesman Larry Ragonese, as of Saturday night, the kill tally for New Jersey’s six-day bear hunt was 464 bears. (Last year was 592.) That number represents about 13 percent of the state-estimated population of 3,400 bears in areas north of Interstate 78 and west of Interstate 287. One of the bears killed weighed 829 pounds (!), a new New Jersey state record.

More info here.

December 12, 2011 | The World Is On Fire! | Continue Reading | Comments { 7 }

TAKING MONEY FROM THE NPS

As Rocky points out, most national park employees are majorly underpaid, often using their masters degrees while working seasonally for decades before a permanent job opens. Perhaps that’s the reason that Lydia L. White, age 48, of Hooper, Colorado, allegedly stole $750,000 from Great Sand Dunes National Park from March 2007 through December 2010. She is charged with 145 counts of theft of government property and 53 counts of money laundering. That one didn’t make it onto The Morning Report. More info at National Parks Traveler.

What about the NPS stealing from us? As I’m sure many of you have noticed while traveling through some our country’s great public lands, there seems to be quite a few structures that might not have been the best allocation of federal money. Did Yellowstone need a $27 million Visitor Center? Maybe? I’m not sure.

MP3: Frank Sinatra – Sleep Warm

October 11, 2011 | The World Is On Fire! | Continue Reading | Comments { 0 }

The Fate of Heaven

“Yosemite: The Fate Of Heaven”:

“Yosemite–The Fate Of Heaven” is a stunning film portrait of Yosemite National Park. Breathtaking cinematography graphically depicts the fragile wonder of the place naturalist John Muir once called “a great temple lighted from above.” The film illustrates how our passion for Yosemite’s beauty jeopardizes the very wilderness we love so much.

Read by Robert Redford, the film’s narration is taken from the diaries of Lafayette Bunnell, a doctor who accompanied the Mariposa Battalion in 1851 on a mission to “hunt down Indians.” The campaign brought soldiers for the first time into the sacred valley home of the Ahwahnechee tribe in the Sierra Nevada. “My astonishment was overwhelming,” wrote Bunnell of the valley’s grandeur. “Here before me was the power and glory of the Supreme Being.” Bunnell understood immediately that his small band would be the first and last white men to see the natural wonder of the valley unspoiled.

More than 130 years later, tens of thousands trek to the park from all over the world to enjoy the valley’s magnificent landscapes and wildlife. The film introduces us to hikers and campers for whom Yosemite is a true shrine, including a free-hand rock climber who “dances” up walls of sheer granite and a woman whose family survived the depression by camping at the park and fishing its rivers. Vintage photographs and observations from Bunnell’s eloquent diary remind us that America’s love affair with Yosemite is well over a century old.

Wrote Bunnell on leaving Yosemite. “Those scenes of beauteous enchantment I leave to those who remain to enjoy them.” Today Yosemite is a protected national park, but that may not be enough to guarantee its future. The continual onslaught of nature lovers–over 1,000 cars a day–only intensifies the conflict between preservation and public enjoyment. Sanitation workers remove 25,000 pounds of trash a day. Work crews toil to repair natural trails damaged by wear. Park rangers protect tourists from roaming bears, and curious deer from potato chip hand-outs. Nature rules here, but human beings, we learn, are both the biggest threat to the park’s future and its best hope.

Watch the entire thing, just like I’m doing now, over at The Creak of Boots.

September 7, 2011 | Music/Movies/Books, Native American, The World Is On Fire! | Continue Reading | Comments { 1 }

COLD SPLINTERS IN PORTLAND

Friends, Brothers, Sisters, Strangers In The Night,

Cold Splinters is headed out west to Portland, Oregon this week, so if you’re around, please drop me a line. I’ll be in the city for the majority of my stay and would love to meet up and grab a beer.

See you there?
Jeff

August 14, 2011 | The World Is On Fire! | Continue Reading | Comments { 5 }

Dave Foreman

“Well, if I was a rich Republican pulling down $100,000 a year as executive director of the Sierra Club or the National Wildlife Federation, I’d call Earth First terrorists too…The terrorists are the National Park Serivce, the U.S. Park Service and their corporate masters.”

Watch Dave Foreman, co-founder of Earth First, being interviewed at a rally in 1986 after the jump.

Continue Reading →

July 5, 2011 | The World Is On Fire! | Continue Reading | Comments { 2 }

VSO DAY

On Thursday, February 17th, the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society announced a VICTORY IN THE SOUTHERN OCEAN DAY. The Sea Shepherd ship Bob Barker has been tailing the Japanese Nisshin Maru factory ship since February 9th, making it impossible for the whalers to continue their illegal whaling operations. The Japanese whaling fleet hadn’t even taken 10% of their quota. Sea Shepherd estimates that over 900 whales have been saved this year.

“I have a crew of 88 very happy people from 23 different nations including Japan and they are absolutely thrilled that the whalers are heading home and the Southern Ocean Whale Sanctuary is now indeed a real sanctuary,” said Captain Paul Watson.

February 23, 2011 | The World Is On Fire! | Continue Reading | Comments { 0 }

MONKEY WRENCHER: Tim DeChristopher

On February 28, Tim DeChristoper goes to trial in the state of Utah. One month prior to President Bush leaving office, the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) intended to auction off thousands of acres of southern Utah wilderness to private oil and gas companies. Twenty seven year old student and environmental activist Tim DeChristoper threw a stick in the spokes, and that stick was a bidders paddle.

In their mad rush to sell the land before President Obama was sworn into office, the BLM failed to properly clear each bonded bidder, something that DeChristopher quickly understood when attending the auction. DeChristoper, intending only to protest and stir things up, realized his chance amidst the haphazard operation to stall the sale by buying as much land as possible. In the end, DeChristoper had bought over 22,000 acres of land surrounding Arches National Park, land that he never intended to pay for. The truth quickly surfaced that he bid falsely to save the land from sale, but his ploy worked. The BLM, now under the Obama administration, is still sorting out the sale.

Abbey’d be proud.

Check out this article for more info on DeChristopher, and his upcoming trial.

February 22, 2011 | Politics, Public Lands, The World Is On Fire! | Continue Reading | Comments { 4 }

International Year Of Forests 2011

On February 2nd, The U. S. Forest Service, with partner organizations, the National Association of State Foresters and the American Forest Foundation, announced the U.S. celebration of the official United Nations International Year of Forests 2011. The theme of the U.S. campaign is “Celebrate Forests. Celebrate Life.”

More PR blabble here. Thank you BP.

February 7, 2011 | Public Lands, The World Is On Fire! | Continue Reading | Comments { 2 }