Magazine
Invasion of the rock jocks

July 7, 2003

Bishop, Calif., is a hot spot for the lively new sport of bouldering, but some fear that the new generation of rock-climbers is short on environmental ethics, treating nature as little more than an outdoor climbing gym. Also in this issue:Even as wildfires blaze in Arizona and New Mexico, and President Bush’s forest-thinning plan moves through Congress, Western governors counsel moderation in logging and suggest more research and collaboration.

Feature

Invasion of the rock jocks
Bishop, Calif., is a hot spot for the lively new sport of bouldering, but some fear that the new generation of rock-climbers is short on environmental ethics, treating nature as little more than an outdoor climbing gym

Essays

Fire in the West: It’s no simple story
A group of scientists says that the West is facing a megadrought, and the notion that wildfires should be allowed to burn is simplistic and downright dangerous
Once touched by drought, you never forget
The writer remembers his mother and grandmother’s stories of the Dust Bowl and the Great Depression as he faces the current drought afflicting the West

Dear Friends

Dear Friends
We need a vacation! Paonia board meeting; visitors; Karen Mockler’s first novel

News

As fires rage, governors counsel discretion
Even as wildfires blaze in Arizona and New Mexico, and President Bush’s forest-thinning plan moves through Congress, Western governors counsel moderation in logging and suggest more research and collaboration
Follow-up
Klamath farmers have to cut back on water; hunters asked to use lead-free ammo to protect condors; Interior Department forms new appraisal office for land swaps; Indian activist Russell Means crashes NPS dedication of Little Big Horn Memorial
Back on the range?
Controversy is rising over a plan to transfer management of Montana’s National Bison Range and several other wildlife refuges to the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes
‘New Homestead Act’ would boost dwindling towns
The "New Homestead Act" now before Congress seeks to entice the young and skilled back into the Great Plains’ dying towns -- struggling communities like Eads, Colo
Reinstating the heir to the Truckee River
The Nevada Lahontan cutthroat trout, believed to be extinct for 60 years, may still be alive, but actually restoring the fish to its native Truckee River and Pyramid Lake could prove extremely complicated
A ravaged river gets a new life
The Nature Conservancy is using the McCarran Ranch, which it recently purchased, as a river-restoration pilot project for Nevada’s Truckee River
Bikers want back in to national park
Tucson, Ariz., mountain bikers are pushing the Park Service to reopen the Cactus Forest Trail in Saguaro National Park
Trees help clean the West’s dumps
The Riverbend Landfill in McMinnville, Ore., is planting poplar trees to help clean up contaminants in a cutting-edge process called phytoremediation
Water bottles flood landfills
A nonprofit group, Californians Against Waste, is trying to double the state’s recycling deposits on beverage containers, but the industry is fighting attempts to put a bill through Congress
Demolish the dam, sayeth the Lord
Montana’s Clark Fork River Coalition is celebrating the EPA’s call for the removal of Milltown Dam and its toxic reservoir, a decision even conservative Gov. Judy Martz says God’s will
War on fire takes a toll on fish
The group Forest Service Employees for Environmental Ethics is calling for Forest Service firefighters to be more careful with fire retardants, which are causing fish kills in Western streams
Hood River dam’s days are numbered
Pacificorp has agreed to remove the Powerdale Dam on Oregon’s Hood River in 2010
Report brandishes cold facts about U.S. energy
A new report by the Rocky Mountain Institute called U.S. Energy Facts criticizes current energy policy and urges efficiency and conservation
Log on for fire news
A new Web site, Forest Fire and the American Southwest, is intended to serve as a "one-stop-shopping site" for information about regional wildfires

Book Reviews

Westerners must be fire-starters as well as firefighters
Fire specialist Stephen Pyne’s new book, Smokechasing, is a brilliant and thoughtful collection of essays on a topic he knows very well

Heard Around the West

Heard Around the West
Orange County, Calif., is running out of building room; Arizona man says, "Cage cattle, not people;" "Provider Pals" program wants Montana schoolkids to "adopt" loggers and miners; endangered Bigfoot; DNA catches rustler; arguing about prairie dogs in Gra

Letters

Pesticides killing frogs? Poppycock.
Pesticides killing frogs? Poppycock
Pesticides and frogs – it's worse than we thought
Pesticides and frogs – it's worse than we thought
Lori Piestewa's real lesson
Lori Piestewa's real lesson

Related Stories

Editor's Note: Speak up, ‘quiet recreationists’
Outdoor recreationists need to follow the lead of the Outdoor Industry Association, which is fighting the Utah wilderness rollbacks, in caring about the fate of their natural playgrounds
Who’s managing climbers?
A look at popular climbing areas around the West shows both the problems – and the solutions – inspired by the popularity of rock climbing
One park clamps down on climbers
Hueco Tanks State Historic Site near El Paso, Texas, had to enact strict regulations governing climbing after the area’s rock art was vandalized
Climbers: More than just fun-hogs?
The Access Fund says it’s out to prove that climbers care about the environment, but some say that the group’s tactics are no different from any wise-use group’s