Zach has disabilities that make hiking extremely difficult
Wilderness designation removes all mechanical travel including biking. The system limits access to the handicap, the elderly and others with mobility problems. It limits the use of chainsaws to clear existing trails; it limits the use of helicopters in the maintenance of land, people rescues and other necessary jobs including the logging of damaged, diseased and dying forests.
Wilderness designation also limits logging which despite what a lot of environmentalists think is often beneficial to the forest. Look at the damage of the bark beetle.Â Even famous enviromental activist Robert Redford has allowed logging on his Sundance Resort. Redford understood that the health of the forest sometimes neccesitates man’s help when fires and other natural forest elements are limited by man. The forest in its natural state fixes its self but with the absensce of fire the forest needs the help of man. Logging can and must be done responsibly. We are a long way away from the irresponsibility of strip logging.
The problem with designating additional Wilderness Areas is that any type of active management, such as timber thinning or prescribed burning, is restricted on those parts of the forest. However, trained wildlife biologists know that active management is the key to forest diversity.
Many people believe that wilderness protects the forest and its wildlife species from man. Science simply does not corroborate that belief, in fact the studies above and many more prove that active forest management, including prescribed fire, reduces the build-up of fuel levels within the forest and protects against catastrophic wildfires and protects biodiversity. Further, wilderness designations severely limit what can be done to mediate the damages after a catastrophic event such as a wildfire or storm.
National Wild Turkey Federation Senior Wildlife Biologist Dowd Bruton of Traphill, N.C Testimony before members of the U.S. Senate Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry Committee
There are too many people that think that wilderness designation is the best way to protect the forest from man. It is not. All it does is limit the managementâ€™s ability to manage federal lands and fails to make a better healthier wilderness.
Because of this I am asking everyone to send a message.Â I have included my letter below.
The Honorable Nick J. Rahall II
Chairman Committee On Natural Resources
1324 Longworth House Office Building
Washington DC -20515-0001
Dear Chairman Nick J Rahall II (D-WV),
As a concerned and responsible motorized outdoor recreationist, I am writing to ask that you oppose H.R. 980, the Northern Rockies Ecosystem Protection Act (NREPA), introduced by Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-NY). Â The bill will designate 24 million acres in Idaho, Montana, Oregon, Washington and Wyoming as Wilderness and components of the national Wilderness Preservation System.
H.R 980 would close all the trails to responsible motorized access in these areas. Our public lands are for the enjoyment of all Americans and not just an elite few. Enthusiasts include families with small children who recreate together, active senior citizens and the handicapped who enjoy the freedom to access the outdoors that off-highway vehicles provide. We cannot afford to close any more trails to responsible motorized recreation without providing an alternative riding opportunities. Therefore I am asking you to please oppose H.R. 980.