Peter Lovera the Idaho Conservation Leagues’s 2015 Artist in Residence elegantly captured the 2015 Livingston Mill/Castle Divide trail work vacation that he volunteered on! His words and photos capture how a week of stewardship in Idaho’s wilderness can change you and connect you to the wild.
“Keep close to Nature’s heart… and break clear away, once in awhile, and climb a mountain or spend a week in the woods. Wash your spirit clean.” – John Muir
Please read his blog here: A WEEK IN THE WHITE CLOUD WILDERNESS.
We extend a huge thank you to all the volunteers for there hard work and the Idaho Conservation league for sponsoring this trail work vacation!
If it’s now wilderness, why are you working so hard to leave a big fat ugly human footprint? This log is a beautiful, totally natural feature which your misguided self important trail work turned into a reminder of human convenience. Wilderness means LEAVE IT ALONE! There are plenty of multi-use trials you can grind your egos on. Leave the wilderness alone!
David, thank you for stopping by and sharing your concerns. Be assured that ALL feedback is welcomed, even negative, as without it the conversation ceases.
You can also be assured that no one in the world of wilderness conservation would remove a log simply for the sake of removing it, just because a tree fell down. All understand the value of the fallen tree to the ecosystem, and how it supports numerous species.
Your desire to see wilderness completely unaffected (though not unappreciated) by humans is one many share — as well as by most, if not all, in the wilderness conservation community. But just as occasionally a diseased tree limb must be sacrificed to save an otherwise healthy tree, occasionally a fallen log must be sacrificed to save the future of a wild place.
On this particular trail work project, performed under the direction of a very experienced and highly knowledgeable forest ranger, the log in question was removed only because it was blocking a trail.
It is the trails that bring people into the wilderness, that help them to discover and enjoy the beauty that awaits them in the woods. And it is through this discovery and enjoyment that people learn to care about — and to work to protect — the wild places. Without caring people, much of our country’s wild places would be plowed under to build housing developments and shopping malls, highways and hotels.
The ITA, the US Forest Service, and many other wilderness groups work hard to encourage the public to get out into the wild and develop a passion for the wilderness…..with the full knowledge that, while creating a caring public is critical to the survival of wild places, the impact of people on said wild places can be detrimental. It is for this reason that a carefully maintained trail system, including multi-use trails, is so vital to wilderness, as trails aid in minimizing the impact on the environment by protecting delicate flora and fauna which would otherwise be crushed underfoot.
And lastly, you can be assured that no one likes to have to cut up and remove a log from a trail…..it’s back-breaking work. But sometimes it is necessary for the overall health of the wilderness, and isn’t it nice that we have people who care enough to do this tough work? Kudos to all who participated in this, and all trail work maintenance. There is a special “wild place” in the afterlife reserved for all of you. 🙂