Features

The Big Swing: Why a blue Colorado county voted for Trump
The Big Swing: Why a blue Colorado county voted for Trump
How a wave of retirees and a changed economic landscape reshaped rural politics.
Meet Nevada’s cow cops
Meet Nevada’s cow cops
Where crime scene investigators ride the range.
The cost of the bighorn comeback
The cost of the bighorn comeback
In California’s Eastern Sierra, bringing back bighorn has meant killing more mountain lions.
Heart-Shaped River: Craig Childs finds his center in Canyonlands
Heart-Shaped River: Craig Childs finds his center in Canyonlands
Not all maps are made of paper. The best ones are spooled in memory.
Of Sparrows and Sodbusters
Of Sparrows and Sodbusters
Western and Mexican conservationists race against time to save grasslands – and the bird species that depend on them.
Idaho Power is waging war on renewable energy. Is it winning?
Idaho Power is waging war on renewable energy. Is it winning?
One of the West's great old-school monopolies and its multi-pronged attack on wind and solar.
Dinosaur Wars
Dinosaur Wars
Startling, one-of-a-kind fossils are unearthed in Montana – and shunned by scientists.
Can we save Mojave desert tortoises by moving them out of harm’s way?
Can we save Mojave desert tortoises by moving them out of harm’s way?
The feds aim to save threatened tortoises by moving them out of the path of development, but no one knows if the strategy really works.
New route to end Utah's wilderness stalemate
New route to end Utah's wilderness stalemate
Can one of the West's most conservative, anti-federal lands lawmakers broker a mega-wilderness deal in the Beehive state?
California farm communities suffer tainted drinking water
California farm communities suffer tainted drinking water
In California's agricultural hub, the Central Valley, Latino communities fight for clean water.
Conservation goals in Jackson Hole collide with a need for worker housing
Conservation goals in Jackson Hole collide with a need for worker housing
In Wyoming's top resort town, the desire to protect the environment and the community's character kills big affordable housing projects.
The power grid may determine whether we can kick our carbon habit
The power grid may determine whether we can kick our carbon habit
How the huge and fragile network of wires intertwined into our very existence may determine whether we can kick our carbon habit.
How right-wing emigrants conquered North Idaho
How right-wing emigrants conquered North Idaho
Conservative transplants largely from California have taken over Kootenai County -- have they gone too far?
Seeking balance in Oregon's timber country
Seeking balance in Oregon's timber country
Can logging towns and old-growth forests both thrive in the Northwest?
Sacrificial Land: Will renewable energy devour the Mojave Desert?
Sacrificial Land: Will renewable energy devour the Mojave Desert?
An unlikely group of activists is championing a new bill to protect the Mojave Desert. But even if it passes, large swaths of once empty land will be developed.
Secret getaways of the National Landscape Conservation System
Secret getaways of the National Landscape Conservation System
A desert hiker finds a lot to like in little-known Bureau of Land Management gems.
Field notes from a solo paddle in Alaska’s Inside Passage
Field notes from a solo paddle in Alaska’s Inside Passage
A journalism professor kayaks alone for nearly 1,000 miles, dealing with difficult seas, icebergs, orcas and bears.
Climate change turns an already troubled ski industry on its head
Climate change turns an already troubled ski industry on its head
California's Mammoth Mountain provides a case study on the uncertainty of the ski business, and how global warming threatens to make it even more unpredictable.
Farmers agree to tax those who deplete groundwater
Farmers agree to tax those who deplete groundwater
Amid drought and climate change in Colorado’s San Luis Valley, farmers vote for a new approach to rein in their overpumping of groundwater.
Will the Badlands become the first tribal national park?
Will the Badlands become the first tribal national park?
Oglala Lakota leaders hope to transform their bombed-out Badlands and help lift the tribe out of poverty, but it won't be easy.
How Outward Bound lost, and found, itself
How Outward Bound lost, and found, itself
The original outdoor education school came close to falling apart after consolidating into a single national school. Now, its newly separate branches are thriving and redefining themselves.
A field program teaches undergrads to think differently about public lands
A field program teaches undergrads to think differently about public lands
Whitman College's Semester in the West and similar programs strive to make students think about resource issues critically and compassionately, and often change their lives in the process.
Oil and gas companies pour money into research universities
Oil and gas companies pour money into research universities
In the midst of the nation’s current oil and gas frenzy and controversies over fracking, energy company contributions to schools are raising questions about academic integrity.