A land that is facing ceaseless development. A people mired in obesity from their over-reliance upon technology and motorized equipment. A quality of life—particularly the sporting life—that is rapidly careening downhill. These are some of the basic tenants of our call to arms—for American and Canadian sportsmen and women to stand up for the wild country and wildlife that depend so much upon it. Now, more than ever before, we need wild lands: places to rekindle the depths of the human soul. Backcountry Hunters and Anglers is a non-partisan group of sportsmen and women who are standing up for wilderness and for the wildlife that depends upon it.
Pebble Mine: BHA has been working to stop the proposed Pebble Mine near Bristol Bay. The Pebble Mine, if allowed to proceed, would be the largest copper/gold mine in North America. The location of the mine would be right above Bristol Bay, a pristine fishery that is home to the world’s largest Sockeye salmon run. In addition to salmon, the bay is home to a huge diversity of other fish and marine mammals and sea birds. BHA does not believe the short term benefits would make up for the long term effects of placing a gigantic mine above one of our last great fisheries. This part of Alaska has frequent earthquakes, which could easily jeopardize the dams necessary to hold back toxic mine tailings. Alaska BHA members have been meeting with biologists and Board of Fisheries directors and making comments about proposed actions and proposed legislation.
For a BHA blog on the Pebble Mine.
To read more about BHA Alaska’s efforts to stop the Pebble Mine, as well as other issues that Alaska BHA is involved in, click here.
BHA members founded a new Arizona State Chapter of Backcountry Hunters and Anglers in September and will be working to identify key areas for protection.
Nathrop, Colo. -- After 18 months of collaboration with sportsmen, Chaffee County leaders, businesses and residents, Sen. Mark Udall introduced legislation today that would designate Browns Canyon as a national monument.
The bill would establish protections over 22,000 acres that would help maintain the quality of hunting and fishing habitat around the canyon as well as the always popular Arkansas River. Given the flexible nature of monuments, undeveloped portions of the monument would be designated as wilderness and less stringent protections would be placed on the rest of the area, encouraging public use and recreation.
“The Arkansas is the most popular rafting river in the country. I’ve spent many years guiding raft and fishing trips on the Arkansas and spending time in Browns Canyon is a highlight of any trip,” said Bill Dvorak, a longtime outfitter and organizer for Sportsmen for Brown’s Canyon. “Protecting Browns Canyon would maintain an important, sustainable part of the area economy. Just as important is protecting air and water quality and wildlife and fish habitat at a time when increasing population and development are creating more demands on public lands.”
This is the 2nd installment of a two-part series on wilderness navigation.
During the 2013 bow hunting season, BHA member Dan Martel observed a horseman and motorcyclist driving cattle on the border of the South San Juan Wilderness in Colorado. The motorcyclist was illegally off-road and had driven right past a “No Motor Vehicles” sign at the trailhead. Dan approached the cattlemen and was able to take a number of photographs that explicitly identified the violation. However, because Colorado's OHV identifiction remains small and very difficult to read, other identifying information was needed.
Dan returned to the trailhead where he identified the trailer and tow vehicle using tracks and engine temperature of the tow vehicle. He then contacted Chris Ortiz, a law enforcement officer for the Rio Grande National Forest and provided photographs, a detailed description of the incident, location, and physical descriptions of the suspects.