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Know the West

Dear Friends


Corrections and emendations

We apologize for garbling names in our coverage of the Adam's Rib ski resort battle in Colorado (HCN, 2/19/96). Bud Gates, not Bud Grant, is the Eagle County commissioner; Kathy Heicher, with a K, is on the Eagle County planning commission, and Kathleen Forinash, not Forinesh, is the county's director of health and human services. We regret the errors.

Gene Lorig of the Concerned Citizens for Eagle County would like us to add that a number of environmental organizations helped his group fight the proposed ski resort, including the Colorado Chapter of the Sierra Club, the Colorado Wildlife Federation, the Colorado Environmental Coalition, and the Land and Water Fund.

It's easy

The same day's mail contained an order from Eugene Simon of Faywood, N.M., for six gift subscriptions to HCN, starting with "that excellent think piece" on Santa Fe, and a postcard from Mark Miller of Santa Fe canceling his subscription because, instead of Santa Fe and tourism, "you should stick to the bigger problems in the West."

Running HCN is easy: We just do what readers tell us to do.

Visitors - in person

Hal Brill, who tells us he is an environmentally responsible investment advisor, stopped by to pick up the issue on Santa Fe, where he lives when he's not house-sitting for friends near Paonia.

Long-time subscriber John Welfelt of nearby Delta visited HCN after talking to the Paonia Rotary Club about economic development. John, who owns Welfelt Welding, has helped form an economic development group to diversify the local economy and improve the quality of life. Without such efforts, he says, rural communities become desperate and grab for whatever jobs they can get.

Also passing through Paonia were subscribers Tim and Wren Wirth, on their way from a standing-room-only conference in Glenwood Springs on quality of life and growth. Tim is a former senator from Colorado who is now with the U.S. State Department. They were on their way to Crested Butte to celebrate publication of Reflections on a Western Town: An Oral History of Crested Butte, Colo., by their daughter Kelsey Wirth. The book features lots of historic photos and is published by Oh-Be-Joyful Press, Box 804, Crested Butte, CO 81224.

The book points out one difference between Crested Butte, the mining town, and Crested Butte, the ski town:

"Whereas before locals worried that there would be too much snow, the constant fear today is that there will not be enough." In the old days, too much snow closed the railroad tracks, which shut down the coal mines. Today, too little snow shuts down skiing.

And Norm Mullen dropped by to tell us about the Colorado Environmental Coalition. He is its Western Slope representative in Grand Junction. HCN and CEC have since decided to hold a joint potluck on Saturday, May 18, in Grand Junction, after both groups hold a board meeting.

Visitors - by mail

When HCN got six requests by E-mail for samples from Ithaca, N.Y., associate publisher Linda Bacigalupi became curious. Karen Tang filled her in: "Hi, yes, we are all in an environmental economics class in Cornell. Our professor put the link to your site on the class's web page, that's why..."

Subscriber Garrett Ray of Fort Collins, Colo., tells us that the Regional Environment Center for Central and Eastern Europe is looking for a communications officer, presumably to be based in Budapest, Hungary. If you are interested, the center's E-mail address is [email protected]

Michael Frome writes from Bellingham, Wash., to comment on the financial report in the Feb. 5 issue. "I love the idea of (HCN) spending only 5 percent on newsprint, for advertising is not only what's wrong with newspapers, but with society." Michael has a new book coming out in the spring: Chronicling the West - Thirty Years of Environmental Writing.

Goodbye, hello

If we had four more Jon Christensens, we used to joke, HCN would have the West completely covered. That's because Jon reported on the 200,000-square-mile Great Basin, leaving only 800,000 square miles for all the rest of us to cover.

Jon is still covering the Great Basin for HCN, but as a freelance writer rather than as its Great Basin editor. With the extra time, the Carson City, Nev., resident intends to set up a news service and publish a quarterly newsletter about the basin.

In memorium

Inside-the-Beltway wilderness champion James Gould Bradley died on Dec. 25, 1995. John Twiss of the Black Hills National Forest in South Dakota wrote to say that "he deserves tribute. He did so much for this country."

Bradley worked for the U.S. Forest Service for 18 years defending wilderness on the ground, and then worked for former Congressman Bruce Vento, D-Minn., helping to pass laws that protected 3 million acres of land as wilderness, added 700,000 acres of national forest, and established five national recreation areas and two national monuments.

In his eulogy at a Jan. 21, 1996, memorial service, John Twiss said Jim Bradley, from his position on a congressional staff, vigorously protected the Forest Service's integrity "against attack by big money interests, political manipulation and budget attacks."

Coming up

Our lead story squeezed out a Bulletin Board page this issue, but two conferences set for Colorado deserve mention.

The experience of discovery, from documenting climate changes to analyzing farm practices, will be the focus of Field Scientists and the Shaping of the American West, at the University of Colorado at Boulder March 15-16. The conference features talks by Wes Jackson of the Land Institute and Ted Strong of the Columbia River Inter-Tribal Fish Commission. Contact the Center of the American West, 303/492-4879.

You can learn the intricacies of water rights and water quality issues at the third annual Western Water Law get-together in Denver March 7-8. Conference topics include citizens' lawsuits under the Clean Water Act and off-reservation use of Indian-owned water. Contact Continuing Legal Education International, 1541 Race St., Suite 100, Denver, CO 80206 (800/873-7130).

- Ed Marston for the staff