Celebrate the Wins

If you fish flies and surf the web, you might have noticed a lot of recent focus on protecting our public lands. Buster’s done a bit of mouthing off about it too, and we know it’s easy to let the bastardos get you all down in the chops.

So pick your ass up, get your Muir on, and celebrate the addition of 400 acres to Yosemite’s western boundary.

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Ackerson Meadow was part of John Muir’s original plan for Yosemite

via Luke Hunt, Ph.D. for American Rivers:

Through this addition to Yosemite National Park, Ackerson Creek – which flows through the property before flowing into the Wild and Scenic South Fork of the Tuolumne River and the greater San Joaquin River – will have its water quality protected from threats for years to come.

Aw hellz yeah!

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Gone, Gone, Like the Snows of Yesteryear

“The ugly fallout from the American Dream has been coming down on us at a pretty consistent rate since Sitting Bull’s time — and the only real difference now […] is that we seem to be on the verge of ratifying the fallout and forgetting the Dream itself.” – Hunter S. Thompson, Fear and Loathing: On the Campaign Trail ’72

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Turn around, puppy, she’s standing right there.

If you’re lucky in 2016, maybe you’re better off than your parents or grandparents. Maybe you got a better education, or are able to own a home. Maybe you’ve got a pension (ha, Google it). Maybe you’re simply able to negotiate a stroll without being harassed, beaten, tazed, or straight up shot dead. And maybe your own kids will be better off than you are. That’s what most parents hope for, anyway, but look at the rising costs and disappearing opportunity for nearly everything, and that hope might feel increasingly desperate.

Those of us lucky enough to be U.S. citizens have a heritage that’s the envy of the world. Millions of acres of wild land and clean water are bequeathed to all of us as a happy accident of birth, or the fortunate benefit of negotiating a long and costly immigration process. And in the absence of property or money or opportunity, we can at least pass this inheritance along to our kids, as long as we’re vigilant and the well isn’t poisoned.

And, you know, if it isn’t stolen by greedheads like the American Lands Council and their pet politicians, who are attempting to force the divestiture of our public land and water to the states, where they can be, or in some cases must be sold off to private interests who can keep your kids’ dirty feet from soiling it ever again.

Screw that. Start here, and here, but don’t stop there. Raise hell. Don’t be forced to tell the kids that you’re sorry, but you just didn’t do enough. It’s easy to type words about heritage and the home of the brave, but that doesn’t amount to a hell of a lot when they’re willing to set the dogs on you.

Wild and Scenic Rock Creek. Make. This. Happen.

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It starts with deep pools and log jams in its lower reaches and ends curving through meadows beneath cliff faces hundreds of feet tall; the section of Rock Creek that is being proposed for Wild and Scenic Designation has every type of water you could possibly expect.  Rock Creek hosts not only, rainbows, browns, the odd brookie, native cuts and bull trout and whitefish it provides habitat for deer, moose, goats, bears, pikas (meep!), foxes, coyotes, wolves (probably) , various species of pocket gophers, voles and moles, beavers, otters, the occasional wolverine, mountain lions, countless bird species, mayflies, caddisflies, stoneflies and terrestrials.  It is an awesome place.

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Take a moment to learn more about Rock Creek and why it needs protection here then sign the petition over here.

 

Free the Collect!

“On the lower end, two fair-sized streams drained the interior. One rose from a series of springs that poured forth from hillocks around today’s 20th Street and Fifth Avenue. The Saponickan band living there called it Ishpetenga. It flowed southwest into the Hudson near the mouth of another trout stream. This one had its origins in a deep, fair-sized pond where Worth and Centre streets now cross. It flowed northwesterly, almost in a straight line, and became the course for today’s Canal Street. The pond was known as The Collect. The Dutch name for this trout pond was derived from one of its beaches, which they which they called Kalk Hoek – Chalk Point or Chalk Hook. It was given the name because the early Dutch settlers came here to collect the shells of freshwater mussels, which were ground and added to the mortar used to build their homes. When the English took over management of Manhattan in 1664 they assumed many of the Dutch words already in use for geographic features. Their inelegant pronunciation of Dutch turned the monosyllabic word “Kalk” (or “Chalk”) into the dissylable “Kal-leck”- hence, “Collect.” The pond’s name had nothing to do with collecting water in the area, as some writers have suggested, although it did have two small feeder streams. For decades, in the 1600s and 1700s, it was the source of drinking water for all of lower Manhattan’s residents. The Collect and its associated streams contained brook trout as late as 1740.”

– from Brook Trout by Nick Karas

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…and a shovel and a fly rod!