Magazine
Of Birds and MenDigital Edition

August 6, 2012

Piecing together a 50-year restoration in San Francisco's South Bay, one species at a time. Also, why defensible space around homes still burns, finding and growing edible camas, a Native American staple, the Bakken water boom, and more.

Feature

The Salt Pond Puzzle: Restoring South San Francisco Bay
The Salt Pond Puzzle: Restoring South San Francisco Bay
The unintended consequences of the most ambitious wetland recovery project on the West Coast -- and the tough choices biologists may face as they try to balance the competing demands of rare species.

Current

What the High Park wildfire can teach us about protecting homes
What the High Park wildfire can teach us about protecting homes
After the Colorado wildfires, experts try to figure out why some "fire-proofed" neighborhoods with defensible space burned, while similar neighborhoods didn't.
The Continental Divide Trail gains new protectors
The Continental Divide Trail gains new protectors
After its original trail group dissolved in January, in July the new Continental Divide Trail Coalition formed. They'll coordinate protection and maintenance of the long-distance hiking route through five Western states.
The Bakken oil play spurs a booming business -- in water
The Bakken oil play spurs a booming business -- in water
Hydraulic fracturing's extraordinary appetite for water is creating friction between North Dakota's farmers and drillers.

Editor's Note

Not "pristine", but still wild and unpredictable
Not "pristine", but still wild and unpredictable
In this new, human-dominated epoch, the "Anthropocene," every attempt at restoration is likely to be filled with tough and risky choices.

Uncommon Westerners

In search of camas, a Native American food staple
In search of camas, a Native American food staple
Botanist Madrona Murphy traces long-lost edible wild plant gardens cultivated by the Pacific Northwest's Coast Salish.

Essays

Of balloons, littering and birthday parties
Of balloons, littering and birthday parties
When you're a curmudgeon in Nevada's high desert, you regard deflated, abandoned balloons as an especially vile form of trash – until it's your daughter's birthday party, and she "needs" to airlift some balloons.

Dear Friends

High Country News gets new interns
HCN's newest interns are Brendon Bosworth and Emily Guerin; farewell to Philip Fradkin; correction.

Book Reviews

Arapaho Journeys: Photographs and Stories from the Wind River Reservation
Arapaho Journeys: Photographs and Stories from the Wind River Reservation
In Arapaho Journeys, photographer Sara Wiles assembles 30 years' worth of photos and stories about life on Wyoming's Wind River Reservation.
Practical pyromania: A review of The Flamer
Practical pyromania: A review of The Flamer
In his new novel, Ben Rogers tells the coming-of-age story of a young Nevada boy named Oby Brooks who just loves to blow things up.
We cannot drill our way out of this mess: A review of Arctic Voices
We cannot drill our way out of this mess: A review of Arctic Voices
In Arctic Voices: Resistance at the Tipping Point, renowned photographer Subhankar Banerjee hears from 39 writers, biologists, activists and Native Americans about the need to save the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.

Letters