Essays

The boondoggle of Trump’s border wall
The boondoggle of Trump’s border wall
There’s no separating the land and people of the border region.
How to face the ecocide
How to face the ecocide
Climate chaos, mass extinction, the collapse of civilization: So what if we’re doomed?
The women confronting California’s farm conditions
The women confronting California’s farm conditions
Female farmworkers face sexual assault, pesticide exposure and low wages.
Ranch Diaries: Why cowboy life is intense
Ranch Diaries: Why cowboy life is intense
We have other interests, like art and cooking, that take a backseat to the needs of our land and animals.
Rants from the Hill: The aliens that make Nevada home
Rants from the Hill: The aliens that make Nevada home
Military history, conspiracy theories and the landscape itself make Nevada ground zero for the bizarre and otherworldly.
Anatomy of a flash flood
Anatomy of a flash flood
After a series of deaths, a writer considers his own close calls in canyons.
Ranch Diaries: Is ranching a form of conservation?
Ranch Diaries: Is ranching a form of conservation?
Our cattle can help restore wildlife habitat, reduce fire fuels and sequester carbon, when used creatively.
Claustrophilia: Do wide-open lands bring us closer together?
Claustrophilia: Do wide-open lands bring us closer together?
A writer finds that Colorado small-town life and Mongolian mishaps strengthen her human connections.
Notes from the road to bestsellerdom
Notes from the road to bestsellerdom
An author’s promotional book tour includes incontinent owls and posh but uncomfortable luncheons.
Ranch Diaries: One dog can be worth three hands
Ranch Diaries: One dog can be worth three hands
A cowboy and a good canine or two can handle several hundred cattle.
Rants from the Hill: Don't fence me in
Rants from the Hill: Don't fence me in
Marking our territory with wildlife-friendly fences.
Bringing a long-lost artifact back to the Hopi
Bringing a long-lost artifact back to the Hopi
Iconic Western author journeys with a tribe’s spiritual talisman.
How movies have changed our expectations of the wild
How movies have changed our expectations of the wild
Decades of Disney have prepared us for a tamed, cleaned-up version of nature.
Dispatch from a medic on the North Star Fire in Washington
Dispatch from a medic on the North Star Fire in Washington
What base camp and wildfire look like from one firefighter's perspective.
Ranch Diaries: Is it worth it to raise our calves 'naturally'?
Ranch Diaries: Is it worth it to raise our calves 'naturally'?
The logistics of raising natural beef at Triangle P.
What we've lost in the Methow Valley wildfires
What we've lost in the Methow Valley wildfires
Three firefighters have died as fires continue to rip through Washington.
Dreaming where I walk
Dreaming where I walk
An Indian writer becomes an American citizen — and finds herself.
Ranch Diaries: Selfie culture meets rustic ranch life
Ranch Diaries: Selfie culture meets rustic ranch life
We miss a lot with a device in front of our eyes, a filter between us and the real world.
Finding the quiet West inside
Finding the quiet West inside
A writer remembers a week spent on a cattle ranch, and an unexpected discovery.
Rants from the Hill: Watching the desert flood
Rants from the Hill: Watching the desert flood
When the ghost rivers rage in Nevada.
Ranch Diaries: How to coexist with wild animals
Ranch Diaries: How to coexist with wild animals
When your livelihood depends on the boundaries you set with the natural world.
In the middle of nowhere, a Promised Land
In the middle of nowhere, a Promised Land
A community with environmental sensitivities makes a home in Arizona’s desert.
Misadventures in packrafting
Misadventures in packrafting
Is the new sport just an expensive way to get into trouble on the river?