A valentine to you, dear reader:

Some call us cynics. They think High Country News is a downer. But anyone who steps into our office or talks on the phone with our freelance writers, artists or contributing editors can palpably feel our passion.

WE LOVE THE WEST (yes, we're shouting) just like you! We want it -- in all it's tousled, breathtaking, diverse glory -- to be our valentine, all year long.

In honor of that holiday that celebrates the beating heart, we gathered a few of our favorite "love stories" for your pleasure. We hope you enjoy these and share them with someone you love.

Yours truly,

HCN Staff


 


For the
love of trees
By Michelle Nijhuis, Dec. 9, 2013
When trees change due to the planet's shifting climate, we change too.


Obama's love letter to natural gas
By Judith Lewis Mernit, July 22, 2013
The political and practical potential of gas in the climate fight


For the love of hummers
By Jean Palumbo, Sept. 5, 2011
The dedicated volunteers of the Hummingbird Monitoring Network gather field data to help conserve the birds they love.


Love and tomatoes -- a natural combination
By Jeremy N. Smith, Aug. 20, 2012
Diamonds aren't always a girl's best friend; sometimes a fresh, ripe, local tomato is.


The Tao of Pow: Learning to love winter
By Christoper Cokinos, March 21, 2011
A newcomer to Utah learns to love winter with the help of snowshoes.




I don't
love my dog
By Laura Pritchett, Feb. 20, 2012
It's hard to love your dog when she keeps rolling in dead animals and bringing half-eaten deer parts into your formerly tranquil home.

Westerners love erotic landscapes
By Stephen Lyons, March 18, 2013
The Western landscape is full of arousing features.


Date with a climate-change denier
By Megan Kimble,
Dec. 21, 2012
A first (and last) date with someone who doesn't believe in global warming.



Love wins

By Ana Maria Spagna, Feb. 4, 2013
After 22 years, a couple gets the first same-sex marriage in their rural Washington county.



Heart-Shaped River

By Craig Childs, Sept. 16, 2013
Not all maps are made of paper. The best ones are spooled in memory.