Writers on the Range


Writers on the Range is opinion from the ground up. Got a beef with beef? An experience that changed your mind about the American West? Writers from the region tell their story in 750 words. Op eds are syndicated to 50-plus papers, and they also appear here, on the HCN website. For more information, contact Writers on the Range editor, Betsy Marston: betsym at hcn.org.


Remembering a “free man” who died at the Grand Canyon
Remembering a “free man” who died at the Grand Canyon
A transient outdoorsman, he only wanted to be in the mountains or down some canyon.
In Northern New Mexico, a piñon-nut culture is vanishing
In Northern New Mexico, a piñon-nut culture is vanishing
A warming climate hits piñon pines — and the community that harvests them.
Consider the vole, endangered and adorable
Consider the vole, endangered and adorable
How a collective effort is protecting one of the most endangered mammals in the nation.
Biking bill is a smokescreen for opening up wilderness
An electric-power giant is poised to fail
An electric-power giant is poised to fail
A radical change could be coming to the way electric co-ops across the country do business.
Salmon supporters win again in court
Salmon supporters win again in court
Washington will have to fix up culverts that block fish passage.
Partisan politics are pulling my town apart
Partisan politics are pulling my town apart
Can lessons from ecology offer a way to find common ground in our polarized nation?
Don’t let Bears Ears go the way of Moab
Don’t let Bears Ears go the way of Moab
Industrial tourism has transformed the town. Bears Ears doesn’t have to suffer the same fate.
Have farmers markets been spoiled by their own success?
Why does the outdoor recreation community ignore horseback riders?
Why does the outdoor recreation community ignore horseback riders?
We love and make use of our public lands, but we get no respect.
Sometimes, the West must be protected from itself
Sometimes, the West must be protected from itself
Today, we need to listen more carefully than ever to the ideas of Western historian, Bernard DeVoto.
How my adopted daughter made peace with the outdoors
How my adopted daughter made peace with the outdoors
If our daughter couldn’t tolerate nature, how would we integrate her into our world?
Outdoor outfitters can’t stay quiet on climate change
Outdoor outfitters can’t stay quiet on climate change
The industry is short-changing millions of visitors at a time when dialogue is needed.
Let’s be clear: TSA’s new tactics are bribery
Let’s be clear: TSA’s new tactics are bribery
A new program lets you cut in line at security, for a fee.
How Leonard Peltier has unjustly spent forty years in prison — and why it’s time to change that
Federal coal leasing needs a major overhaul
Federal coal leasing needs a major overhaul
There’s no Brexit from our climate problems
There’s no Brexit from our climate problems
A rant against the mindless pleasure of simply smashing something to see what happens.
In this season of potential megaburns, nix the campfire
We should be proud of delisting grizzlies
We should be proud of delisting grizzlies
The bear is a huge conservation success story, and it shows that the Endangered Species Act works.
Why is an Estonian energy giant trying to revive failed Utah oil dreams?
Why is an Estonian energy giant trying to revive failed Utah oil dreams?
There’s a new proposal to extract oil from shale, at great cost to the Colorado River Basin.