Smoke Turns Pink in the Evening Sun

The evening sun turned the smoke and ash pink as it set—hidden from view.
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Ash Clouds Over the Hulsey Bench

These photos are of ash from the Wallow fire.  The pictures look up from Nutrioso toward the Hulsey Bench.
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Construction May 24-26

Construction continues….on and on…with lots of dust!!!
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We have a big hole….

We broke ground on Monday and the digging went very well.  The basement is just about finished and we have a heap of top soil.  The guys said this was the easiest digging since playing in a sand box.  We are really lucky to not be on top of a bunch of rocks.  COOOOOOL
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Hunting and Predators–does it work?

Perhaps the best control we have on the effects of hunting on predator-human conflicts is California. In 1991 California voters passed an initiative that outlawed hunting of cougars. Today California has more cougars (about 6000) than any other western state, yet has the lowest per capita rate of cougar attacks in the West. In other words, in states where cougars are hunted so they presumably “fear man” there are far more cougar attacks on people than in California—even though California has more people, and more cougars than any other state—thus should, statistically speaking, have much higher per capita cougar attacks.

California also has one of the lowest livestock losses in the West attributed to cougars as well suggesting that hunting is ineffective at reducing conflicts with ranchers—in fact the evidence suggests that hunting actually increases livestock losses in many instances. Read the full article.

ORVs Impact on Environment

The Apache-Sitgreaves National Forest has released its Draft Environmental Impact Statement for Travel Management Planning. All of us who cherish quiet recreation and the conservation of our public lands need to stand up and be heard. The ORV industry is large and vocal.

There are 36 million registered All-Terrain Vehicles (ATM’s), also called Off-Road Vehicles (ORV’s), and 12 million registered snowmobiles in the U.S. And nearly 93 percent of the 262 million acres of public land in the U.S. West and Alaska managed by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) is open to some form of off-road vehicle activity. More than 400,000 “ghost roads” have been carved into the American wilderness by these vehicles, and only 2 forests, the Hoosier in Indiana and the Monongahela in West Virginia, do not allow off-road vehicle use. The prolific usage of these off-road vehicles as a source of recreation is a major source of air, soil, and water pollution. These motorized vehicles disturb wildlife habitat and natural vegetation, and destroy national monuments, parks, forests, deserts, and even archaeological sites.

In the Footsteps of Leopold at the Foot of Escudilla