The Cleanest Line

Public Lands

“Somehow, the desert would always remain in the recesses of my mind—that project I’d get to the next season, that crack we scoped that we needed to get anchors on or sometimes just that meditation and erasing of anything from the past or present.” -Luke Mehall, The Desert. Photo: Greg Cairns

The Magic of the Desert

By Luke Mehall   |   Aug 23, 2019 August 23, 2019

The creation of Bears Ears National Monument was something that seemed more inevitable in the summer of 2016. It seems like now it’s one of those things where you’re on one side or the other because after all, I’m writing this book in the Trump years, and… Read More

San Rafael Wilderness. Photo: Matthew R. Sayles

Bright Spots and Battlegrounds for California Conservation

By Obi Kaufmann   |   Aug 29, 2018 August 29, 2018

Depending on how you look at it, California’s most beloved wildlands are either under siege or experiencing a wellspring of support. In the current political atmosphere, bursting with assaults on bedrock environmental laws and protected public lands, it seems particularly important to recognize and spread the word about whatever pockets… Read More

It Was Always About Oil, Coal, Gas and Uranium

It Was Always About Oil, Coal, Gas and Uranium

By Lisa Pike Sheehy   |   Mar 29, 2018 March 29, 2018

In December of 2017, the president illegally reduced Bears Ears and Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monuments by nearly two million acres. Despite overwhelming support from the majority of Americans, nearly three million of whom spoke up during a public comment period in favor of protecting our national monuments,… Read More

Photo: Bob Wick/Bureau of Land Management

Why Should the Public Care About Public Lands?

By Hans Cole   |   Jul 6, 2017 July 6, 2017

Debates over how America’s public lands should be managed are as old as the system itself, dating back to the early 1900s when President Teddy Roosevelt pioneered our current system. Disagreements have often centered on the balance between energy or resource development and protecting wild places for recreation and wildlife. Read More

Photo: Andrew Burr

Our Common Ground

By Vincent Stanley   |   Sep 28, 2017 September 28, 2017

As Americans, regardless of our descent, we share as our greatest inheritance, both material and spiritual, the gift of our federal public lands. Most of us can readily name a piece of ground sacred to us as individuals that belongs to every soul in the country: Yosemite, the Everglades, Acadia,… Read More

Photo: Fawn Talmon

The Last Straw

By Timmy O’Neill   |   Jul 5, 2017 July 5, 2017

In mid-May, I presented at the annual NOLS instructor conference held in Lander, Wyoming. This was not only an opportunity to speak to the frontline of outdoor educators but, in light of the recent concerns with our public lands, an even better… Read More

Photo: Paul Hendricks

Defending the Idea of Wilderness

By Paul Hendricks   |   Jun 5, 2017 June 5, 2017

The Secretary of the Interior arrived in Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument midday on May 10, 2017. He came to perform an “assessment” of the monument—to see whether the current boundaries overstepped their task of protecting natural and cultural resources and spurring economic growth. It was raining, windy and cold, but… Read More