Posts Tagged ‘Press Releases’

Support for National Wilderness Month Grows

Posted on Sunday, September 13th, 2009

As you may know from last week’s announcement of President Barak Obama’s Proclamation commemorating of the 45th Anniversary of the Wilderness Act, September is National Wilderness Month.

Below are statements of support for the Proclamation from the Secretaries of Interior (Ken Salazar) and Agriculture (Tom Vilsack).

The Friends of Scotchman Peaks Wilderness hopes you’ll join us in celebrating National Wilderness Month! Become a Friend and join us on one of our Guided Hikes. Come see for yourself this beautiful pristine area that we are working hard to preserve for all of us through our efforts to achieve official Wilderness designation.

Be sure to read the “Extra Feature – Celebrate National Wilderness Month!” from Campaign for America’s Wilderness

And if you’re interested you can read the History of Wilderness Progress – a time line of wilderness legislation.

Secretary Salazar Joins President Obama in Commemorating 45th Anniversary of Wilderness Act

WASHINGTON — Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar today joined President Obama in commemorating the 45th anniversary of the Wilderness Act and the creation of the National Wilderness Preservation System by President Lyndon Johnson on Sept. 3, 1964. 

“The creation of the National Wilderness Preservation System is one of the greatest events in the history of American conservation,” said Salazar, who oversees 73 million of the 109 million acres of designated wilderness in the United States. “These pristine places that are set aside to be forever wild and untouched inspire us and remind us of the bounty with which our nation is blessed in the beauty and richness of our land.” 

Wilderness areas are areas of undeveloped federal land that retain their primeval character and influence, without permanent improvements or human habitation, which are protected and managed to preserve their natural conditions. Uses of these lands are generally restricted to non-motorized activities such as hiking, backpacking, horseback riding, and other non-invasive activities. 

In March, President Obama signed the Omnibus Public Land Management Act of 2009 into law. This law designates 52 new wilderness areas and adds acreage to 26 existing areas, a total addition to the National Wilderness Preservation System of more than 2 million acres.

In an official proclamation issued today, the President declared: “The Wilderness Act is widely recognized as one of this nation’s most important conservation laws.  This law and the National Wilderness Preservation System it established have served as a model for similar wilderness protection laws in a number of our States and in nations around the globe.” 

The 762 wilderness areas in the United States range in size from the 5-acre Rocks and Islands Wilderness in California to Wrangell-Saint Elias Wilderness in Alaska, which is more than 9 million acres.

Within the Department of the Interior, the National Park Service manages 43.9 million acres, the Fish and Wildlife Service manages 20.7 million acres, and the Bureau of Land Management oversees 8.7 million acres. The Department of Agriculture’s National Forest Service manages 36.2 million acres of wilderness.

All but six states have designated wilderness areas. Alaska has the most wilderness acres — 57.5 million – followed by California with 14.9 million.


Release No. 0424.09
Office of Communications 202-720-4623

Landmark legislation created framework that now protects over 109 million acres of wilderness around the country 
WASHINGTON, Sept. 4, 2009 – Today, Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack joined President Barack Obama in marking the 45th anniversary of the landmark Wilderness Act. President Obama signed a proclamation this week designating September as National Wilderness Month and calling on “all Americans to visit and enjoy our wilderness areas, learn more about our wilderness heritage, and explore what can be done to protect and preserve these precious national treasures.”
“As we celebrate the 45th anniversary of the Wilderness Act, we recognize that a healthy and prosperous America relies on the health of our wilderness areas,” said Secretary Vilsack. “Our National Forest Wilderness Areas are a national inheritance that not only help generate rural wealth through recreation and tourism, but also supply communities with clean water, shelter wildlife, and help us mitigate and adapt to climate change.”
The U.S. Forest Service, one of the four federal agencies administering the National Wilderness Preservation System, oversees over 36 million acres of Wilderness, which comprise roughly 19% of the entire National Forest System. The National Wilderness Preservation System, which 45 years ago started with a little over 9 million acres, has grown tenfold over this period.
Tom Tidwell, Chief of the US Forest Service, who administers almost 60% of the 756 areas in the National Wilderness Preservation System, said, “The Wilderness Act of 1964 and subsequent congressional designations, represent collaboration of citizens, agencies and Congress to preserve wild, undeveloped places for the benefit of current and future generations.” Chief Tidwell added, “Wilderness Areas offer an immense variety of natural, scenic, historical, and cultural settings. During this month, we will give special emphasis to stewardship of our 440 National Forest Wilderness Areas. The Forest Service is committed to quality resource management of our wilderness areas including the completion of many projects through the American Reinvestment and Recovery Act. Efforts like the work of AmeriCorps and many other youth and partner organizations play an important role in the care and protection of these special places.”
2009 was a banner year for Wilderness, with over 2 million acres added to the National Wilderness Preservation System through the Omnibus Lands Act of 2009, bringing the total system acreage to over 109 million.

2009 Annual State Of The Scotchmans

Posted on Friday, May 1st, 2009

Join the Friends of Scotchman Peaks Wilderness at the new Ponderay Events Center (behind Sandpoint Furniture off the east entrance to the Bonner Mall complex) on Tuesday May 26th for our annual “State of the Scotchmans” celebration. Doors open at 5pm to meet and mingle with special guests Congressman Walt Minnick and Wilderness Historian Doug Scott during a happy hour reception. We will serve up fun, food, information and a lot of inspiration. The evening’s theme is “Wilderness – Our Common Ground”. Bring your family, friends and neighbors. Admission is free and this is sure to be an exciting evening for anyone interested in wilderness!

Come help us celebrate the start of summer, learn more about our upcoming summer hikes, concerts, activities and events. Our hats, shirts, hiking maps, bumper stickers and buttons will be available. We will look at what lies ahead on the pathway to wilderness for the Scotchmans. And we will honor some outstanding volunteers! Plus we have two exciting speakers!

Congressman Walt Minnick will open our event with reflections and remarks about his first several months in Washington DC and the general climate for public lands management in the new congress and administration.

Our keynote speaker will be Doug Scott, one of the legends of the wilderness movement. Doug’s two books tell the story of how America has preserved more than 100 million acres of diverse wilderness areas in 44 states. Doug’s multimedia presentation will include readings from his book as well as slides which demonstrate the history and dynamics of wilderness protection. We’ll have plenty of time for a question and answer dialogue.

Doug’s first book, “The Enduring Wilderness: Protecting Our Natural Heritage Through the Wilderness Act” is detailed history of the Wilderness Act and how it has been applied over the last 45 years to protect special places like the Scotchmans. Doug’s newest book, “Our Wilderness: America’s Common Ground” is a 64-page full-color book depicting the diversity of our National Wilderness Preservation System and how it is used by Americans. Included in this book are several photos of the proposed Scotchman Peaks Wilderness!

Read the full Press Release – 252kb PDF
View the Flyer (it’s pretty) – 412kb PDF

Holiday Sip & Shop

Posted on Saturday, November 1st, 2008

For Immediate Release

Date: Friday Nov 21st, 2008

Friends of Scotchman Peaks Wilderness Holiday Sip and Shop

The Friends of Scotchman Peaks Wilderness invites you to toast the holidays with us!

On the Monday after Thanksgiving, the family has gone home and the holiday season is just getting into the full swing; so swing out in Scotchmans style.

On Monday December 1st, the Pend d’Oreille Winery, on Cedar Street in Sandpoint, will host a special holiday “Sip and Shop” event from 4pm to 7pm, to benefit our wilderness efforts. The winery will donate 10% of proceeds from all sales during this event (including wine by the glass!). So, come kick off the holiday shopping season in “wild” style – meet and mingle with other “Friends”, do some seasonal shopping and enjoy a glass of holiday cheer!

See you at the winery!

North Idaho Wilderness Advocate Awarded

Posted on Friday, May 25th, 2007

May 24, 2007

For Immediate Release

Rick Johnson, (208) 345-6942 ext. 19
Phil Hough, (208) 255-2780


Wilderness advocate Phil Hough, of Sagle, Idaho, was awarded the Idaho Conservation League’s highest award for environmental activism on May 19, 2007 during the organization’s Wild Idaho Conference in Stanley, Idaho.

Hough received the Keith and Pat Axline Award for Environmental Activism for his work on the proposed Scotchman Peaks Wilderness. He is chairman of the grassroots group Friends of Scotchman Peaks Wilderness, which is working to designate an 88,000-acre wilderness in the Cabinet Mountains on the border of Idaho and Montana.

“In our work you create success by building the political inevitability that something will happen,” said Rick Johnson, executive director of the Idaho Conservation League. “Phil has been at the center of making wilderness protection for Scotchman Peaks politically inevitable.”

Formed in 1973 to be the voice of conservation in the Idaho Legislature, the Idaho Conservation League was instrumental in the campaign to create the Frank Church River of No Return Wilderness. In addition to protecting public lands, the group also protects clean water, clean air and quality of life in Idaho.

Hough co-founded the Friends of Scotchman Peaks Wilderness in January 2005 with other wilderness supporters whose interest was piqued during the Panhandle National Forest Plan process.

“This area had been proposed as wilderness since 1987 and so few people in our community had heard of that,” Hough said. During the forest planning process, he added, “the discussion of wilderness values was getting lost in the broader conversation of forest planning.”

In the last two years, the group has gained more than 1,000 supporters as well as endorsements from the Bonner County Commissioners, cities of Sandpoint, Ponderay and Thompson Falls, Mont., area newspapers, Montana’s governor, and numerous other business and community leaders.

Hough is one of several North Idaho residents who have been awarded the Keith and Pat Axline Award for Environmental Activism, which is named for two long-time Idaho Conservation League members dedicated to conservation causes. The award was established in 1995.

Past North Idaho winners include former state Sen. Mary Lou Reed, University of Idaho Professor Fred Rabe, retired Fish and Game employee Wayne Melquist and Spokane physician John Osborn.


Kinnikinnik Native Plant Society Supports the Scotchmans

Posted on Friday, May 12th, 2006
KinnickinnickNPSLogo copy
Phil Hough
(208) 255-2780Vice-President
Rae Charlton
(208) 255-7666Secretary
Annette Fraser-Runnalls
(208) 263-9234

Marilyn George
(208) 263-9470

Arboretum Manager
Sylvia M. Chatburn
(208) 263-2175

Lois Wythe
(208) 263-8038

Board Members
Ken Haag
(208) 255-4413

Molly O’Reilly
(208) 255-7336

Nancy Rodgers
(208) 265-2541

Ann Wimberley
(208) 264-5379

“Resolution Supporting the Proposed Scotchman Peaks Wilderness Area

The Kinnikinnick Native Plant Society recognizes the need to protect contiguous and intact ecosystems, retaining their natural state, in order to ensure the continued health and survival of native flora.

Therefore we encourage and support local, state and federal representatives to act in favor of the proposed Scotchman Peaks Wilderness.

Designating the Scotchman Peaks as wilderness protects the natural beauty, the unique qualities and the biodiversity of this special place, offering safe harbor for many rare and endangered species and their habitats.”

Download the PDF here.

Sandpoint City Council Endorses the Scotchmans

Posted on Monday, April 24th, 2006
No: 06-23
Date: April 19, 2006



WHEREAS:  Scotchman Peaks are located above Lake Pend Oreille and the Clark Fork River in the Cabinet Mountains, straddling the Idaho/Montana border, with the highest point in Bonner County at 7,009 feet; and,

WHEREAS:  The Friends of Scotchman Peaks Wilderness is a non-profit organization that is concerned that the 88,000 acre Scotchman Peaks roadless area deserves permanent protection as a wilderness area;


WHEREAS:  Its steep slopes, remote valleys, natural beauty and unique flora and fauna all suggest that its greatest value would be wilderness.

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED THAT:  The City of Sandpoint supports the designation and management of the Scotchman Peaks as a wilderness area to ensure our public lands continue to offer the quality of life that our residents desire while protecting its unique qualities for future generations.

Raymond P. Miller, Mayor

Maree Peck, City Clerk

City Council Members:

    Yes No Abstain Absent
Boge   X      
Elliott Motion X      
Spickelmire         X
Lamson   X      
Lockwood Second X      
Newton   X