Magazine
The Last Open Range

March 1, 2004

Wyoming’s Green Mountain Common Allotment is one of the West’s last big, wide-open landscapes – but these days, ranchers, environmentalists, history buffs and the BLM are arguing over whether it’s time to start putting up fences. Also in this issue: Nearly a decade after Imperial Valley irrigators fought off a water grab by Texans Ed and Lee Bass, the Imperial Valley Irrigation District buys the old Bass property, Western Farms, and the water rights that come with it.

Feature

The Last Open Range
Wyoming’s Green Mountain Common Allotment is one of the West’s last big, wide-open landscapes – but these days, ranchers, environmentalists, history buffs and the BLM are arguing over whether it’s time to start putting up fences

Editor's Note

Watt turns history on its head
Former Interior Secretary James Watt still sees himself as a victim of environmental "selfish interest groups," conveniently forgetting that he fought against popular conservation laws on behalf of powerful corporations

Uncommon Westerners

Creating immigrant leaders: Labor organizer Ramon Ramirez
Ramon Ramirez of PCUN, the Northwestern Treeplanters and Farmworkers United, fights on behalf of the rights of immigrants, at home in the Willamette Valley of Oregon and across the globe

Essays

We're bickering with our neighbors while the feds spend our money
The defeat of Oregon’s Measure 30 by anti-tax zealots shows that voters angry at state and local governments are going after the wrong enemy
My great-grandfather the crow killer
The author’s family likes to think that his great-grandfather has come back as a crow after a lifetime spent shooting the rambunctious birds

Dear Friends

Dear Friends
Arjun Tadini Bacigalupi is born; HCN’s February board meeting & our new business plan; board members Mark Gordon and Terry Janis step down; new board members Annette Aguayo and John Heyneman; Gary Paul Nabhan on desert agriculture; and familiar faces Geof

News

Postscript to a water war
Nearly a decade after Imperial Valley irrigators fought off a water grab by Texans Ed and Lee Bass, the Imperial Valley Irrigation District buys the old Bass property, Western Farms, and the water rights that come with it
Follow-up
Federal judges fight over snowmobiles in Yellowstone; Kennewick Man is scientific data, not sacred remains; Arlo Looking Glass convicted in murder of Anna Mae Pictou-Aquash; and Union of Concerned Scientists says Bush administration systematically abuses
Old-growth trees to fall in the Sierra
In California, the Forest Service abandons the collaborative Sierra Nevada Framework in favor of a new management plan that cuts big trees
Arizona land swap dogged by questions
Critics say the Yavapai Ranch Land Exchange in Arizona is a sweetheart deal between developer Fred Ruskin and the Forest Service
Oil and gas drilling could oust elk — and Boy Scouts
Plans for oil, gas and coalbed methane development in northern New Mexico’s Valle Vidal have aroused the opposition of environmentalists, ranchers, hunters, and the Boy Scouts

Book Reviews

Resurrected memories of a prison camp
"Snow Country Memories: Interned in North Dakota," a new exhibit at the North Dakota Museum of Art, brings to life the World War II-era Fort Lincoln Internment Camp and the people who lived there, like poet Itaru Ina
Calendar
Reading for — and about — a rainy day
Best Essays NW gathers a collection of Oregon Quarterly essays, most of them written by unknown writers who look at the Northwest from a unique perspective
Ski areas get greener
The Ski Area Citizens’ Coalition grades Western ski areas in its Environmental Scorecard, and the average grade is pretty average

Heard Around the West

Heard around the West
Nevada’s getting big; urbanite hunters and the NRA; knapweed-sniffing dog; His Royal Highness goes skiing in Jackson Hole; blatant bellybuttons at BYU; Astrolawn in California; reindeer meat

Letters

Related Stories

The New West collides with open-range laws
As the West grows and develops, more people find themselves drawn into the conflict over open-range laws