Our lands are still ours to enjoy in a wilderness

Posted on Thursday, September 28th, 2017 by »

Bonner County Daily Bee
Sept. 17, 2017

Dear Editor,

I’m from Clark Fork. I’ve spent significant time in the proposed wilderness:  I’ve climbed Middle Mountain and Sawtooth, camped near Horseshoe Lake, and gazed awestruck at the Compton Crags. I’ve stood atop Scotchman No. 2 and scrambled along Vertigo Ridge in the wind. I’ve summited Scotchman Peak from the northeast — not an easy feat — and via the trail more times than my neighbors have planted silly white signs in their front yards. I love this proposed wilderness, and this is my front yard. I’d invite those who misunderstand the wilderness to take a deep breath and look squarely at the facts — which have been on the table for years — and not be misled by a few whose noise appears to be in inverse proportion to their basis in fact.

To my neighbors near and far who oppose the proposed wilderness, fear not. Don’t be so frightened at your imagined slights and losses. The wilderness managed itself beautifully long before man came on the scene, and somehow we’ll all survive if one small patch is left alone to manage itself without us. We are blessed with hundreds of thousands of acres of forest to mangle to our collective hearts’ content. Those who fear the wilderness are like a wealthy child who ignores the riches he already has to wail after one small bauble he doesn’t; it’s comically sad that such a hue and cry is raised at the suggestion that one small corner be left alone, free of our trails and noise and trash. You might even find that something good comes of this change; that “our lands” are ours still, to enjoy and preserve for generations, and your fears have evaporated along with their reasons.

DOUG FLUCKIGER
Clark Fork

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