Essays

Public land is the essence of freedom
Public land is the essence of freedom
A hunter reflects on the gut-level connection she has to the public land she traverses.
Coal. Guns. Freedom?
Coal. Guns. Freedom?
How the Trump administration has seized mythologies around coal.
Close encounters with a scary fire season
Close encounters with a scary fire season
As wildfires have ripped through the West, take stock of what climate change has wrought.
Remembering an environmental science pioneer
Remembering an environmental science pioneer
Theo Colborn uncovered effects of chemicals, like those used in fracking, on the human body.
When neighbors spray herbicides next to your organic crop
When neighbors spray herbicides next to your organic crop
Living together with local resentments in Northern California.
Rants from the Hill: Desert Insomnia
Rants from the Hill: Desert Insomnia
Living the not-so-quiet life in the rural West.
Solace at the end of Homer Spit
Solace at the end of Homer Spit
When I quit my job and joined a pilgrimage of heartbroken dreamers staggering toward Alaska.
‘Poverty with a view,’ in the rearview
‘Poverty with a view,’ in the rearview
I spent my 20s in some of the most beautiful towns in the West.
Rants from the Hill: What’s Drier than David Sedaris?
Rants from the Hill: What’s Drier than David Sedaris?
The Ranter Defends Both Nevadans and Count Chocula.
The lost navigator
The lost navigator
Before Parkinson’s, my father never needed to consult a road map.
Adiós Charles Bowden
Adiós Charles Bowden
The writer passed away in Las Cruces, New Mexico, on Aug. 30.
On the edge with Edward Abbey, Charles Ives and the outlaws
On the edge with Edward Abbey, Charles Ives and the outlaws
One of Charles Bowden’s last essays.
On the edge with Edward Abbey, Charles Ives and the outlaws
On the edge with Edward Abbey, Charles Ives and the outlaws
One of Charles Bowden’s last essays.
Rants from the Hill: How to Cuss in Western
Rants from the Hill: How to Cuss in Western
When “Airin’ the Lungs” is registered at the swear jar.
KDNK speaks with HCN reporter John Calderazzo
KDNK speaks with HCN reporter John Calderazzo
Scientists who study climate change can be remarkably bad at communicating findings.
Teaching aliens to talk
Teaching aliens to talk
How global warming made me change my life.
Masters of Dig: A tour of authorial abodes
Masters of Dig: A tour of authorial abodes
Visiting the homes of my favorite writers
A new century with carnivores
A new century with carnivores
Learning to see predators as companions, not competition.
How my Californian father adapted to Utah
How my Californian father adapted to Utah
He found solace in growing fruit trees, but never quite made the Beehive state his home.
Rants from the Hill: The Bucket List
Rants from the Hill: The Bucket List
When making a to-do list is the most important thing on your to-do list.
Watching the world slip away
Watching the world slip away
How do our children respond to a world threatened by climate change?
Wolf pups, and the return of wild wonder
Wolf pups, and the return of wild wonder
OR-7’s family shows us there’s still something wild about California.
Hunger pangs
Hunger pangs
What’s happening in Arctic villages foreshadows a future of climate disruption.