Secure the areas we love |

Secure the areas we love

Dear Editor:

There is a lot of speculation concerning the Wilderness Gems expansion of wilderness areas. We are afraid of losing precious trails for our bikes, sleds or dirt machines. Our time in the wild country is our most precious experience. This is our mountain homeland, and we want to keep it.

I look in our valleys and see the change from my 50 years here. I am stunned, yet I know that only a hundred years ago these were all wilderness lands visited by the Ute most summers and left to creation during the winters. I see the last 10 years’ growth, compounded by what is coming before commissioners now, and then I imagine that logarithmic leap in density for the next 100 years! Take a drive up Piceance Creek out of Rifle, and look into our future!

We owe it to ourselves and children to actually look at the maps and work with Wilderness Gems to secure the pristine areas we love. Chances are our runs are not affected by any wilderness designations being proposed. Chances are better that the area has already been closed by the U.S. Forest Service or BLM. The ones I have walked are minuscule. It barely takes an hour to cross into Wilderness or another road and pipeline.

Let’s KNOW for sure before we slam our future into a gutter for no reason at all! The maps are naturally complex. Please study them. Help the Gems help us.

John Hoffmann


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