Desert sprawl

January 18, 1999

In Tucson, Ariz., where a dozen acres are cleared for development each day, environmentalists and concerned locals try to find ways to rein in runaway growth, and to save the desert and its remaining endangered cactus ferruginous pygmy owls.


Desert sprawl
In Tucson, Ariz., where a dozen acres are cleared for development each day, environmentalists and concerned locals try to find ways to rein in runaway growth, and to save the desert and its remaining endangered cactus ferruginous pygmy owls.


Environmentalists are 'doing nothing'
Real estate broker Bill Arnold says environmentalists are not helping Tucson.
'It was God's country'
Resident Dee Dee Arnaud remembers the Tucson of her childhood and mourns the changes she has found on her return.
'The party is over'
Tucscon residents Doug and Christina McVie describe the developers' assault on desert.
'People have a voice'
Environmental activist Gayle Hartmann talks about the long struggle to keep development under control.
The roll call of sprawl
Statistics show the frightening pace of growth in the Tucson area.
Selling sizzle and steak
Planner David Taylor says the issue of sprawl is complex and has deep roots.
'Let's get it resolved'
Environmentalist-turned-zoning-consultant Ron Asta describes his journey through Tucson's land-use politics.


Bitter farewell: A Montana valley succumbs to growth fever
Montana's Bitterroot Valley in the midst of a feverish development boom that has its roots in growth that began over a century ago, when incoming whites pushed the Salish people out of the valley and began to build.
Squandering our kids' inheritance
A woman ponders the addiction to gambling which keeps her - and many others who can't afford it - going back to Nevada's slot machines, over and over.
Children teach tough lessons
A Montana teacher worries about the dark impulses that lead her schoolkids to deface a poster of a wolf, with an ink-drawn bullet through its forehead.

Book Reviews

Another dog done gone
The documentary film "Varmints," produced by Doug Hawes-Davis, stresses the controversy surrounding prairie dogs and uncovers truths that viewers might prefer to be fiction.
Crust course coming
The BLM is sponsoring a two-day course on the biology and ecology of "biological soil crust," formerly known as "cryptogamic soil."
ATV revolt
A proposal to close 400 miles of forest roads and 200 miles of trails to motorized vehicles on Idaho's Targhee National Forest has raised the ire of all-terrain vehicle advocates.
Keeping hikers and habitat happy
"Planning Trails with Wildlife in Mind: A Handbook for Trail Planners," a publication from Colorado State Parks, offers suggestions on how to keep hiking trails from interfering with wildlife.
U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
Volunteers are needed by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, from trail crew workers to campground hosts.
Western Forest Activists Conference
Headwaters' 8th Annual Western Forest Activists Conference will be held in Ashland, Ore., Feb. 5-7.
Bibliography of Native American Literature
A Web site,, developed by the Native American Writers Archival Project, includes 10,000" entries of Native American literature.
Gila National Forest
The application deadline for jobs on the Gila National Forest in southwestern New Mexico is Jan. 29.
The Future of Our Public Lands II: A Work in Progress
A second symposium on federal land policy is offered by the Andrus Center for Public Policy, in Boise, Idaho, on March 24.

Heard Around the West

Heard around the West
"Deer Avengers" video game hunts hunters; "New Coke" marketer advises Vail ski executives; skiing and global warming; "ski rage" flares between boarders and skiers; "brain leaks" on slopes; strange but true stories from Denver's Westword; Kennewick Man.

Dear Friends

Dear Friends
Tony Davis and Mo Udall; HCN's a real Western newspaper; Gary Vinyard's death a great loss; water for life; circulation is up; Salida fire; winter interns Rebecca Clarren and Juniper Davis.


A statesman steps off the stage
Morris K. Udall, former Arizona congressman who recently died, is remembered as a dedicated statesman who understood compromise.
The great bison chase continues
Even though the federal Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service admits there is little risk of cattle catching brucellosis from calves, yearlings and bulls, Montana's Dept. of Livestock is hazing all stray bison back into Yellowstone.
The Wayward West
Two Summitville managers, but no higher-ups, are fired for Colorado gold mine disaster; an 8,000-acre wildlife corridor in Montana's Paradise Valley is protected; 33 Nevada wild horses found shot; New Mexico's Baca Ranch owners pull out of purchase deal.
Agencies seek quieter public meetings
At public hearings on BLM's draft management plan for Utah's Grand Staircase-Escalante Nat'l Monument, the agency has introduced new "town meeting" format which limits comments to written rather than spoken - a change activists deem a blow to democracy.
Starry, starry night
The New Mexico Historic Preservation Alliance has declared the night sky one of the 11 most endangered places in the state, and Chaco Culture National Historic Park is leading the way in changing its lighting habits to prevent light pollution.
Keystone snowmakers get thirsty
The Colorado Water Conservation Board says that snowmakers at the Keystone Ski Area pulled more than their share of water from the Snake River to try to make up for a dry early season.


High Country News Classifieds