Heard around the West

 

Did you think intellectual activity at the Forest Service is strangled with red tape? Then you've never heard them on the subject of wilderness golf. Forest Service employee Wendy Keeler recently sent an e-mail about her encounter with a group of families in the midst of a friendly golf tournament in the middle of a Colorado wilderness. "It has been an annual event for the families involved for about 15 years," she wrote. Keeler added the golfers were complying with all the wilderness area's rules, but the tournament presented her with a philosophical problem.

Within two days, 22 messages had come in from more than a dozen of her peers. A few excerpts follow:

Could a person be busted for "being in the wilderness with the intent to play golf?"

"As long as no resource damage is occurring, go do something important!"

"How 'bout: they can play if they use the archaic versions of the equipment - I'm sure that someone around St. Andrews could show them what they would use."

"I could bet big $$ that this wasn't what Howard Zahniser had in mind when he fought for 8 years for the Wilderness Act."

"I'm not saying this because I'm a golfer ... but I wonder if there would have been a problem if the folks had been playing hacky-sack?"

"Because it is not a common activity in wilderness does not mean that it is automatically an inappropriate use. This is called "freedom." "

"I guess I don't even understand why this is an issue ... It doesn't sound any more destructive than pitching a tent or carrying a gun or running 1,000 head of cattle."

"By the way, what is the date of the tournament?"

--

The golfers aren't the only renegades running loose in the West.

There's Carlene Kauer of Rigby, Idaho, who drove her car through five different properties, jumped seven ditches and damaged various fences and irrigation pipes before stopping at the home of Bud Leslie of Salmon. At 5:30 a.m., she was sitting at Leslie's kitchen table wearing nothing but a T-shirt.

"Who the hell are you, and what are you doing in my house?" yelled Leslie, according to the Salmon Recorder Herald. Kauer replied she had been sent by the Lord to save his soul because he is an angry man.

"The more this woman said this, the angrier Bud got," noted Bud's wife, Gayla.

--

Speaking of angry men, it should be noted that former Durango Mayor Jeff Morrissey's rudeness to two women whose car sported a bumpersticker critical of the Animas-La Plata water project (HCN, 11/11/96), was apparently not an isolated episode.

In a letter to the Durango Herald, David Eckenrode recalls a close encounter he had with Morrissey and U.S. Sen. Ben Nighthorse Campbell on a downtown street corner. After Eckenrode related his unfavorable opinion of the project, Campbell told him that he changed parties in part because the Democrats hounded him about Animas-La Plata. Morrissey followed that up with advice to Eckenrode to "grow up and get a clue" and to "get a job!" When Eckenrode suggested that both the ex-mayor and ex-Democrat read what is widely considered the bible on Western water, Cadillac Desert by Marc Reisner, Morrissey said, "I wipe my **** with that book!"

--

Women don't get mad, they get lawyers. In Winter Park, Colorado, housekeeper Tammara Keisler, a self-described California "surfer girl," didn't mind working up to 96 hours a week cleaning rooms at the ritzy Colorado Arlberg Club. But she didn't like it when the company pushed her too far. They fired her last March, not long before the season's end. They said it was for tardiness and insubordination; she suspected it was so they could avoid shelling out the bonus she was entitled to for sticking it out for the whole season. So she sued the club and won, reports Westword. The court ordered the Arlberg to pay her $2,100 - nearly $700 more than they had owed her in the first place.


Heard around the West invites readers to get involved in the column. Send any tidbits that merit sharing - small-town newspaper clips, personal anecdotes, relevant bumpersticker slogans. The definition remains loose. Heard, HCN, Box 1090, Paonia, CO 81428 or [email protected]

High Country News Classifieds
  • PUBLIC LANDS PROGRAM MANAGER
    Conserve Southwest Utah is seeking a candidate with excellent communication skills and a commitment to environmental conservation for the position of Public Lands Program Manager....
  • EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR
    The Western Slope Conservation Center in Paonia, CO, seeks a dynamic leader who is mission-driven, hardworking, and a creative problem-solver. WSCC is committed to creating...
  • PLANNED GIVING OFFICER
    National Parks Conservation Association (NPCA), the nation's oldest and largest national parks nonprofit advocacy organization seeks a Planned Giving Officer. Do you find energy in...
  • NORTHERN NEW MEXICO PROJECT MANAGER
    Seeking qualified Northern New Mexico Project Manager to provide expertise, leadership and support to the organization by planning, cultivating, implementing and managing land conservation activities,...
  • REGIONAL TRAIL STEWARDSHIP COORDINATOR
    Are you passionate about connecting people to the outdoors? The Pacific Crest Trail Association (PCTA) is looking for someone with trail maintenance and volunteer engagement...
  • TRAIL CREW MEMBER
    Position Title: Trail Crew Member Position Type: 6 month seasonal position, April 17-October 15, 2023 Location: Field-based; The RFOV office is in Carbondale, CO, and...
  • CEO BUFFALO NATIONS GRASSLANDS ALLIANCE
    Chief Executive Officer, Remote Exempt position for Buffalo Nations Grasslands Alliance is responsible for the planning and organization of BNGA's day-to-day operations
  • IDAHO DIRECTOR - WESTERN WATERSHEDS PROJECT
    Western Watersheds Project seeks an Idaho Director to continue and expand upon WWP's campaign to protect and restore public lands and wildlife in Idaho, with...
  • DIRECTOR OF DEVELOPMENT, NA'AH ILLAHEE FUND
    Na'ah Illahee Fund (NIF) is seeking a highly qualified Development Director to join our team in supporting and furthering our mission. This position will create...
  • DIRECTOR OF OPERATIONS, NA'AH ILLAHEE FUND
    Na'ah Illahee Fund (NIF) is seeking a highly qualified Operations Director to join our team. This position will provide critical organizational and systems support to...
  • DEVELOPMENT DIRECTOR
    Grand Staircase Escalante Partners (GSEP) is seeking a leader to join our dynamic team in the long-term protection of Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument (GSENM). We...
  • GRASSLAND RESEARCH COORDINATOR
    The Grassland Research Coordinator is a cooperative position with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service that performs and participates in and coordinates data collection for...
  • HYDROELECTRIC PLANT
    1.3 MW FERC licensed hydroelectric station near Taylorsville CA. Property is 184 deeded acres surrounded by National Forrest.
  • "PROFILES IN COURAGE: STANDING AGAINST THE WYOMING WIND"
    13 stories of extraordinary courage including HCN founder Tom Bell, PRBRC director Lynn Dickey, Liz Cheney, People of Heart Mountain, the Wind River Indian Reservation...
  • GRANT WRITER
    JOB DESCRIPTION: This Work involves the responsibility of conducting research in the procurement of Federal, State, County, and private grant funding. Additional responsibilities include identifying...
  • ASPIRE COLORADO SUSTAINABLE BODY AND HOME CARE PRODUCTS
    Go Bulk! Go Natural! Our products are better for you and better for the environment. Say no to single-use plastic. Made in U.S.A., by a...
  • CANYONLANDS FIELD INSTITUTE
    Field seminars for adults in the natural and human history of the Colorado Plateau, with lodge and base camp options. Small groups, guest experts.
  • ATTORNEY AD
    Criminal Defense, Code Enforcement, Water Rights, Mental Health Defense, Resentencing.
  • LUNATEC HYDRATION SPRAY BOTTLE
    A must for campers and outdoor enthusiasts. Cools, cleans and hydrates with mist, stream and shower patterns. Hundreds of uses.
  • LUNATEC ODOR-FREE DISHCLOTHS
    are a must try. They stay odor-free, dry fast, are durable and don't require machine washing. Try today.