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High Country News December 22, 1997


Gold Rush: Mining seeks to tighten its grip on the "last, best place'

An introduction to HCN's special issue on mining in Montana shows the state at the center of debate on hardrock mining.

Montana on the edge: A fight over gold forces the Treasure State to confront its future

Montana has long had a love-hate relationship with hardrock mining, and the prospect of new massive gold mines is bringing all the problems to a boil.


The West from a snowmobile: a 50 million-acre theme park

We are fools to throw away, for a snowmobile's adrenaline rush, the chance to really get close to nature, the writer believes.

Dear Friends

Dear Friends

Snowtime in the Rockies, skipped issue, corrections, Tucson board meeting, John McPhee recommends HCN.


An 1872 law still calls the shots

In Congress, the 1872 Mining Law still rules despite attempts to change it, but some think there is hope in the future for reasonable reform.

Activists "shepherd' wayward bison

Activists seek to protect Yellowstone's bison from another slaughter by physically shepherding wandering bison back onto protected land.

A rural county says no to pork

Rural Colorado's Gunnison County turns down $38 million to upgrade hihghways, saying the people would rather preserve their quality of life.

The Wayward West

Forest Service admits losing money on timber; Utah plans to block nuclear waste shipment; Clinton nixes mineral rights transfer to Montana; Maine's Edwards Dam to be removed for salmon; Ted Turner sees bucks in bison.

Dicey future for Northwest casinos

Washington's Lummi Casino closes because of too much competition.

Judge says wolf reintroduction was illegal

Judge William Downes rules that the wolf reintroduction in Yellowstone and central Idaho was illegal and orders the animals to be removed.

Idaho chokes Spokane

Activists try to end crop burning by farmers in eastern Washington and northern Idaho, saying the resulting air pollution is harming the health of area residents.

Heard Around the West

Heard around the West

Romanian road rage in Mont.; Idaho poachers spear chinook salmon; Wonder Bread recaptures roaming zoo buffalo; crows chase coyote in Seattle; goldfish surgery; escaping emu in Utah; beaver re-landscapes condominium; drinking and riding in Great Falls.

Related Stories

Mine wastes haunt a mythic river

The proposed McDonald Mine on the Blackfoot River would impact a landscape made mythic by anglers and Norman Maclean's "A River Runs Through It."

Gold mines exist in a shaky financial world

McDonald mine owners, Canyon Resources, face problems related to spills, finances and falling gold prices.

Montana's army of writers tested the power of the pens

Montana writers collaborate on a book called "Headwaters," hoping to protect the Blackfoot River from a gold mine.

A gold mine is a city until the ore runs out

The statistics of a huge gold mine like the proposed McDonald Mine are impressive, but the de facto city created will last only 10 to 20 years.

Where one sister sees gain, another sees ruin and loss

The Garland family in Lincoln, Mont., illustrates Montana's love-hate relationship with mining, with Teresa Garland in favor of the McDonald Mine and her sister Becky strongly against it.

Don't worry, says the McDonald Mine's geologist

In his own words, mining geologist KD Feeback defends the proposed McDonald Mine.

Don't trust the mining industry, says a retired rancher

In his own words, retired rancher Land Lindbergh warns against the damage the McDonald Mine would do to the Blackfoot.

The rise and fall of a gold mining company

A time line describes the decline and fall of gold mining at Montana's Zortman-Landusky Mine.

Miners and Montana were too cozy

In his own words, former water-quality enforcer Kevin Keenan criticizes the state of Montana for its favoring of the mining industry.

Can silver be mined safely from under a wilderness?

Two companies want to mine the silver that lies underneath Montana's remote Cabinet Mountains Wilderness.

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