NEWSLETTERS OF FRIENDS OF EAGLES NEST WILDERNESS
CONTENTS

41. October 2019: Nature as Healer - Susie Kincade
40. September 2019: The Blue River Watershed Group - Jennifer Hopkins
39. August 2019: The 1935 Gore Range Expedition - Stan Moore
38. July 2019: Lessons from Mt Everest - Mike Browning
37. June 2019: I-70 (Vail Pass) wildlife crossing structures - Paige Singer
36. May 2019: Route 9 wildlife crossing structures - Paige Singer
35. April 2019: The Fight to protect wildlife from Berlaimont - Peter Hart
34. March 2019: FENW changing its name? - FENW committee
33. February2019: Combating Noxious Weeds - Jim Alexander
32. January 2019: New Leadership at FENW - Bill Betz
31. December 2018: Saving the Lower Blue River Valley - John Fielder
30. September 2018: Trail Maintenance Trip report - Kate Demorest (not available)
29. August 2018: Driven Wild - Dr. Paul S. Sutter
28. July 2018: Where the Heart Is - Dr. Esther Doyle
27. June 2018: The Mystery of Aerie Cabin - Maria DiBiase Eisemann
26. May 2018: Protecting Migratory Birds in Eagles Nest - Dr. Susan Bonfield
25. April 2018: Summit County Rescue Group - Charles Pitman
24. March 2018: Bill Mounsey, Father of Eagles Nest Wilderness, by his granddaughter - Senator Kerry Donovan
23. Ferbruary 2018: Wilderness/Recreation/Camp Hale Bill introduced in Congress - Susie Kincade
22. January 2018: Meet FENW President Tim Drescher - Tim Drescher
21. December 2017: The search for powder - Joel Gratz
20. November 2017: The Cabin on Bighorn Creek - Andy & Victor Walker
19. October 2017: Rename the Gore Range - Karn Stiegelmeier
18. September 2017: The Battle for Our National Monuments - Julie Mach
17. August 2017: Global Warming in the Gore Range - Dr. David Schimel
16. July 2017: Continental Divide Wilderness & Recreation Act - Josh Kuhn
15. June 2017: The American Beaver: An Icon of the West - Elissa Slezak
14. May 2017: Meet Mike Beach, Wilderness Manager - Mike Beach
13. April 2017: Future of Eagles Nest (April Fool issue) - April Phule
12. March 2017: Required Permits in Wilderness? - Kay Hopkins
11. February 2017: A Cry From the Wilderness - Bill Reed
10. January 2017: Public Lands at Risk - David Lien
9. December 2016: My Journey to Eagles Nest Wilderness Manager - Cindy Ebbert
8. November 2016: Saving native cutthroat trout in Eagles Nest Wilderness - Matt Grove
7. October 2016: Is Social Media Spoiling Colorado's Hanging Lake? - Jackie Fortier
6. September 2016: Toward a Natural Forest - Jim Furnish
5. August 2016: Save the Colorado River - John Fielder
4. July 2016: 150 Years on Ute Pass - Bayard Taylor
3. June 2016: Birds of Eagles Nest Wilderness - Dr. Susan Bonfield
2. May 2016: Bicycles in Wilderness? - Tim Drescher
1. April 2016: After Malheur - Currie Craven
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EAGLE POST 41

We are in the process of CHANGING OUR NAME from Friends of Eagles Nest Wilderness to EAGLE SUMMIT WILDERNESS ALLIANCE - ESWA, but we will still be apprising you of important activities in and around Eagles Nest, Holy Cross, and Ptarmigan Peak Wilderness Areas. 
October 2019
Dear *|FNAME|*

Greetings! Our topic this month is

NATURE AS HEALER
By Susie Kincade
Environmental Activist, Nature-based coach, and
Founder,
Women’s Empowerment Workshop
INTRODUCTION: "Those who contemplate the beauty of the earth will find reserves of strength that will endure as long as life lasts" (Rachel Carson). "In wildness is the preservation of the world" (H.D. Thoreau).
These and myriad other eloquent statements by the founders of the wilderness movement and subsequent enthusiasts have for a century fueled enthusiasm to preserve and protect public lands in general and Wildernesses in particular (read 34 excerpts 
HERE). While the truths of these statements seem self-evident to many - perhaps most - of us, they are nevertheless anecdotal opinions of individuals, lacking evidenced-based support. But lately, scientists have been testing those hypotheses, with quantitative results that are robustly supportive, confirming that contact with wild nature provides diverse, measurable, salutary effects on one's health, adding powerful confirmation to the affirmations of Murrie, Muir, Zanhiser, Carson, Thoreau, Leopold, Abbey, and many more.

Below, life coach and environmental activist Susie Kincade describes some of these new results and activities, including "Forest Bathing". In her personal and professional life, Susie's blend of spirituality and pragmatism has created an effective and extensively tested guide for mining the unlimited resources for personal growth that await one in wilderness. 


Nature as Healer
By Susie Kincade
Environmental Activist,
Nature-based coach, and
Founder, Women’s Empowerment Workshop

As stewards of our beloved mountain environment, we have experienced the evidence we need to believe that nature is a powerful healer. We know wild nature feeds our body, mind and spirit. Nature’s magic melts away the creases on our face; our breathing slows and deepens, shoulders let go, anger/frustration/anxiety dissipate, and a sense of calm softens our energy. This is Nature as medicine. And the science is pouring in to support this.

Forest Bathing or Shinrin-yoku, developed in Japan during the 1980s, means "taking in the forest atmosphere" and is a cornerstone of preventive health care and healing in Japanese medicine. Many employers require their workers to take time in the forest areas set aside in cities. Documented effects include boosting the immune system; reduced blood pressure, stress and anxiety; improved mood and ability to focus; increased energy and sense of well-being.

What is happening ‘out there’ in nature is also happening inside our brain. There is a frequency to the natural world and it is curious that our brains tend to resonate at similar frequencies. Consider that in our awake, busy, multi-tasking state, our brains run in the Beta electrical frequency which is about 12 – 24 cycles per second (Hz). When we meditate, our brain waves relax to the slower Alpha state, 7-12 Hz. This is similar to the measured electromagnetic frequency of the earth's resonance, which is about 7.84 Hz. While no scientific measurements have directly linked the earth's resonance to brain waves, it is soothing to know that when we go into the forest our brain naturally slows down to earth's natural resonance, bathing us in gentle electromagnetic waves. 


Thus, a walk in the woods or sitting in verdant gardens can relax and rejuvenate the brain, much like meditation. Add a water feature into the landscape and you just upped your nature dosage. Moving water like the ocean or waterfalls produce the uplifting effect of negative ions that trigger serotonin releases in the brain which, in turn, counteracts stress, anxiety and depression.
 
In the book, Your Brain on Nature, Dr. Eva Shelub and naturopath Alan C. Logan cite a hospital study showing that more aesthetically pleasing nature views fire up a specific portion of the brain rich in opioid receptors. These opioid receptors trigger feelings of wellness and can enhance healing significantly. In a sense, nature is like a little drop of natural, non-addictive morphine for the brain. 


David Strayer, a cognitive psychologist at the University of Utah, has done studies that reveal the “3 day effect”. Nature immersion significantly revives the brain and cognitive ability, as in one study where subjects performed 50% better cognitively after three days backpacking.

In his book, Last Child in the Woods, Richard Louv postulates that “nature deficit disorder” as a key factor in the rise of childhood problems like attention deficit, obesity and possibly even diabetes. When children don’t play regularly and freely in nature they miss out on developing critical skills like spatial awareness and mapping; three-dimensional problem solving, as in building forts, and crossing creeks; and developing a sense of wonder about and connection to the natural world.  

All science aside, nature’s overall healing is a powerful felt sense, one that John Muir eloquently described more than a century ago: “Climb the mountains and get their good tidings. Nature's peace will flow into you as sunshine flows into trees. The winds will blow their own freshness into you, and the storms their energy, while cares will drop away from you like the leaves of Autumn.”
 
For Muir and many of us, Nature is our most powerful medicine. While the science behind that is exciting to know, the simple nature RX is to put ourselves in a place where nature’s peace can flow into us. 

 
Learn more about the growing body of healing through nature from the book, “The Nature Fix” by Florence Williams

ABOUT SUSIE KINCADE
Since she can remember, Susie has been an advocate for our earth and especially for water and wilderness. Raising her daughters on a small ranch in Eagle, she experienced their empowerment from living close to nature. She founded Women’s Empowerment Workshop to help women, girls and families discover their power, confidence and deep connection to nature and Self through retreats, workshops and life coaching.   

Susie has worked for Wilderness Workshop for the past 11 years as a grassroots organizer for new wilderness in Eagle and Summit Counties. The current iteration of this campaign is the Colorado Outdoor Recreation & Economy (CORE) Act, now making its way through the U.S. House and Senate. She balances her industrious work life by hiking, rafting wild rivers, growing a voluminous organic garden and cultivating fantastic adventures in the garden of life. Learn more at
www.womenempower.us. Contact Susie directly: 970.328.5472. susie@womenempower.us.

 
A-Basin logoA huge thanks to ARAPAHOE BASIN SKI AREAFor more than two decades, A-Basin staff have donated generously to their Employee Environmental Fund, of which FENW has been a steady beneficiary. Last year, more than 150 employees donated, led by A-Basin Director Alan Henceroth. Our enduring THANKS!
 
Our Business Sponsor SPOTLIGHT is on  one of our major business supporters. Developed by an oncologist for post-radiation skin therapy, Elite products provide soothing anti-aging benefits that are of special use in our intense, high altitude sunshine. Supplier to   Support ELITE - support FENW.
So many to THANK, so little space... Our deep thanks to:

Avalanche Ranch: Chuck Ogilby and daughter Molly Jacober of Avalanche Ranch  have generously donated for 5 years Jay’s Hut at Shrine Mountain Inn for our Volunteer Wilderness Ranger end-of-season party.  The gathering is a highlight every year for our volunteer rangers.

Restop, the leader in personal sanitation and hygiene in the backcountry (as well as many other venues), for donations of wag bags, which we offer to backpackers headed to the deep backcountry. 

Abbey's Coffee for their generous and frequent caffeine catalysts to get our volunteers off on an early start

Whole Foods Frisco provided delicious pastries to go with the coffee for the work crew on Lily Pad Trail.

Donors to the WilderFest Silent Auction: Target (gift card), REI Dillon (daypack), Kim Fenske (2 hiking guidebooks), Elite Therapeutics (basket of skincare products), Epic Mountain EXPRESS (round trip coupon), Maryann Gaug (hiking guidebook), Baker's Brewery (gift card & free beer), Red Buffalo Cafe (hat, mug, coffee), and The Clubhouse (one hour on golf simulator).

OUR SINCERE THANKS TO YOU ALL FOR HELPING TO PRESERVE AND PROTECT THE CROWN JEWEL OF PUBLIC LANDS - WILDERNESS!
 
Make a donation to FENW....
 
 
... make a difference!

Check out other recent monthly eNewsletters
Hard copy newsletterThe Summer 2019 hard copy newsletter was mailed in mid-May. It contains two dozen fun and informative articles, all of them about FENW - past, present, and future. If you didn't receive a copy, then we don't have your mailing address - please send it to us at info@fenw.org
 
 
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THURSDAY OCTOBER 10, 5:30 PM,
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Details at www.fenw.org/

CITY MARKET COMMUNITY REWARDS PROGRAM 
Please register your City Market Value Card, linking it to FENW, which will send rebates to FENW without compromising your earned fuel points. Please note that each card holder may only sign up for one tax exempt organization. THANKS!
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EAGLE POST 40

The newsletter of Friends of Eagles Nest Wilderness, apprising you of important activities in and around Eagles Nest, Holy Cross, and Ptarmigan Peak Wilderness Areas. 
Before we begin... we urgently need volunteers for 2 projects:
1. HELP! Lily Pad Lakes Wetland Crossing Project - Saturday September 14:  Meet at Dillon Ranger District Office (MAP) at 8:30 AM. Safety meeting, project overview, and morning snacks before carpooling to Lily Pad Lakes Trailhead at the top of Wildernest.  Bring gloves, hiking boots, head gear – tools provided.  Sign-up in advance with project leader KIM FENSKE. See below essay for more.

2. HELP! with east Vail Trailhead surveys - Booth, Gore, Pitkin, and Bighorn THs Sept 19-29. We have many 2 or 4 hour time slots. SEE BELOW essay for details. THANKS!
 
September 2019
Dear *|FNAME|*
BRWG logoGreetings! Our topic this month is

The Blue River Watershed Group
By Jennifer Hopkins
INTRODUCTION: 
Pity the poor Blue River. It may not have burned like the Cuyahoga River in Cleveland, but it has been roughed up repeatedly over the last 160 years.
 
In the 19th century, John Frémont and party traveled the river's length from mouth to headwaters (1843) and described its pristine beauties, which had been maintained in that state by the resident Ute Indians for more than ten-thousand years. Read Frémont's description HERE
 
Just a few decades later things were changing, bigtime, owing to mining activities around Breckenridge. In 1866 William Byers and friends crossed the Ute Pass (about 30 miles downstream from Breckenridge), and Bayard Taylor described the view in his book Colorado: A Summer Trip. After waxing poetic over the view of the Gore Range, Taylor noted, "The usual line of cotton-wood betrayed a stream, and when we caught a glimpse of the water, its muddy tint - the sure sign of gold-washing - showed that we had found the Blue River."
 
Colorado RiversThere followed in the 20th century the dams at Green Mountain and Dillon, and an attempt by the Denver Water Board to build a canal that would have diverted water from every creek in the Gores (including those on the west side) into Lake Dillon (see an earlier eNewsletter by State Senator Kerry Donovan).
 
Into the 21st century flowed the Blue, and early on (2004) a new organization was formed - finally - to protect the watershed. The Blue River Watershed Group (BRWG) has already completed a number of educational, planning and river restoration projects. Read about this forward-looking group below in the article by BRWG Coordinator Jennifer Hopkins.
 
Next month: BRWG is currently addressing a vexing problem, namely the loss of Gold Medal fishing status along a stretch of the Blue River downstream from Silverthorne. In an attempt to identify the cause, they are studying the roles of degraded habitat, unnatural stream flow, and sparse aquatic invertebrate populations. We hope to bring you details of this work next month.



THE BLUE RIVER WATERSHED GROUP
By Jennifer Hopkins
 
Blue RIver WatershedDid you know that over 30% of Denver’s municipal water supply comes from the Blue River watershed? The majority of Colorado’s precipitation occurs on the western slope of the continental divide while the majority of Colorado’s population lives along the eastern slope, requiring the trans-mountain diversion of water. Dillon Reservoir is Denver Water’s largest water storage facility, capable of holding nearly 84 billion gallons. The water is diverted to the South Platte River Basin via the 23.3-mile Harold D. Roberts tunnel, one of the largest diversion tunnels in the world.  Green Mountain Reservoir, owned and operated by the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation, is also an important part of the Colorado-Big Thompson Project (C-BT), which diverts water from the Colorado river to the northern front range via the 13.1-mile Adams tunnel. Green Mountain Reservoir provides compensatory water storage for the Western Slope to offset diversions made through C-BT.

The Blue River is approximately 65 miles in length and flows northward from Quandary Peak, at an elevation of 14,270 feet, to the confluence with the Colorado River just south of Kremmling, at an elevation of 7,400 feet. The watershed is a headwater for the Colorado River and drains an area of approximately 680 square miles, including all of Summit County, and small portions of Grand and Lake Counties. Most of the annual stream flow results from snow melt during spring and early summer, while short, intense, thunderstorms can produce significant rainfall events in July and August. Summit County is known for its scenic beauty and abundant outdoor recreation opportunities which rely on adequate snowfall, stream flows and healthy river systems. Coined “Colorado’s Playground”, the watershed is home to some of North America’s most visited ski resorts and our scenic waters and forests attract outdoor enthusiasts from all over the world.

The Blue River watershed is one of the most important watersheds in Colorado. The health and sustainability of mountain water is vitally important to the overall health and well being of the entire state. Recognizing the need for strategic planning for Colorado’s growing water needs, especially in light of increasing variability of water supply, such as severe droughts followed by severe flooding in the same year, the State adopted the Colorado Water Plan in 2016 (read the plan HERE). The Water Plan lays out a roadmap for water management, particularly through locally-driven and collaboratively found solutions to water issues. One objective of the Plan is to have stream management plans in place for 80% of Colorado’s important rivers and streams, including the Blue River. A stream management plan, also known as an integrated water management plan, allows communities to better understand their water resources and how to utilize those resources in the face of growth and an increasingly warmer and drier climate. The plans are intended to utilize biological, hydrological, geomorphological, and other data to assess stream flows and other conditions necessary to support the environmental, agricultural, and recreational values of the local community while respecting the rights of consumptive water users.
PlanColorado’s Water Plan emphasizes that “watershed health management involves collaboration among many interested entities” and this is perhaps nowhere more applicable than the Blue River watershed, which spans across a number of boundaries and jurisdictions, including federal, state, local and privately-owned lands. Major water uses in the watershed include: storage/reservoirs, trans-mountain diversions; agricultural irrigation; industrial mining; snowmaking; golf course irrigation; hydropower; fisheries and wildlife habitat; and municipal/domestic water providers, including approximately 3,500 wells. There are more than 1,500 legally decreed water rights throughout the basin.
The Blue River Watershed Group (BRWG) was started in 2004 as a gathering of concerned local citizens to engage on topics affecting the watershed through outreach, education and community involvement. The group received 501(c) (3) non-profit status in 2005 and is managed by a volunteer board of directors who have expertise in various fields related to water, land use and environmental stewardship. Throughout the years, BRWG has completed a number of educational, planning and river restoration projects such as:
  • co-hosting the annual State of the River event each Spring with the River Network
  • developing a watershed plan for the Snake River basin, the most disturbed river basin in Summit County, mostly due to water quality issues from abandoned mines
  • restoring, in partnership with the U.S. Forest Service, a crucial part of Tenmile Creek that had been heavily impacted by historic mining, timber harvesting, land use development, and railroad and highway construction
rafters on the Blue RiverAs a community driven organization, BRWG is well positioned to help steward collaborative discussion in the watershed and has partnered with Trout Unlimited to develop an Integrated Water Management Plan (IWMP) for the Blue River Basin. The long-term goal of the IWMP is to enable consumptive and non-consumptive water users and stakeholders to understand and quantify current and future water uses and integrate those uses for the maximum benefit of all and for the overall health of the watershed, all while respecting and protecting existing water rights. Phase I of the IWMP project will involve development of the plan, while Phase II will involve implementation. There are two main objectives to Phase I:
 
1. To understand the potential causes of the declining fishery between Dillon and Green Mountain reservoirs that led to the loss of Gold Medal Status for trout fishing and to determine whether (and how) the decline can be reversed or mitigated. The IWMP project team will work closely with the Blue River Enhancement Workgroup (BREW), a collection of stakeholders that has been investigating the issue for the past few years. IWMP funding will go towards integrating existing studies that BREW has conducted and implementing additional studies as needed. Some possible causes or contributing factors being looked at include water temperature, invertebrate health and phytoplankton habitat.

2: To compile, review and integrate existing studies, plans and other information regarding physical and biological aspects of the Blue River basin water resources for the purpose of formulating objectives and goals that will guide future water management decisions in Phase 2. This "inventory" of watershed data and information will identify gaps where additional studies or reports may be needed and will help identify and prioritize watershed projects for future implementation.

Stakeholder and community involvement is vital to the success of the project and an Advisory Committee has been formed that currently has representatives from over 20 stakeholders from agriculture, recreation and tourism, federal/state/local governments, water managers/providers, environmental groups, industry and land development, and individual users/property owners. We will be holding community meetings in the future to seek input and feedback on the plan from the wider public and have published a questionnaire to help gather information and data from the community. If you are interested in providing your input, please complete the questionnaire here. Learn more about the IWMP and how you can get involved HERE

The IWMP project has over $250,000 in funding from three Colorado Water Conservation Board grants: a Stream Management Plan fund grant, a Colorado Water Plan fund grant and a Water Supply Reserve fund grant; as well as donations from Blue Valley Ranch, Summit County, The Town of Silverthorne, and the Summit County Water Quality Committee. In addition, BRWG received a $100,000 WaterSMART Cooperative Watershed Management grant from the US Bureau of Reclamation. This funding will enable BRWG to grow as an organization and to take the lead on ensuring the IWMP has a long-term home for coordination, action and community involvement. There are a number of issues in the watershed that impact the quantity and quality of water, from water pollution due to historical mining activities to invasive species such as brook trout and quagga mussels. The IWMP will provide Blue River basin water users and stakeholders with a set of community-vetted goals, objectives, priorities, multi-use projects, and innovative management techniques to help guide decision-making in the future and create a tighter network of individuals and organizations working for a sustainable and healthy Blue River Watershed.

 


ABOUT JENNIFER HOPKINS
Jennifer HopkinsJennifer Hopkins is the part-time Coordinator for the Blue River Watershed Group and was hired as the result of the WaterSMART grant. She has worked with the Blue River Watershed Group since 2016, writing grants and helping to organize events and she has extensive experience in governmental and non-profit grant management, operations, and logistics. Jennifer developed a keen interest in water management issues while on assignments in Haiti and Africa as an Emergency Logistician for the International Rescue Committee, an international non-profit that supports refugees and post-conflict development. Jennifer has a degree in International Relations and Management from the University of St. Andrews in Scotland and an MSc in Politics of the World Economy from the London School of Economics. 
 
The woods surrounding our backcountry lakes are suffering from the increased amount of human waste and toilet paper left by visitors. Our VWRs will be handing out WAG BAGS that have been generously donated by RESTOP, the leader in personal sanitation and hygiene in the backcountry, as well as many other venues. THANKS RESTOP!
By wag bagthe way WAG is an acronym for Waste Alleviation and Gelling. A powder absorbs the moisture (and the smell). The bag fits conveniently inside another bag and is good for 2-3 uses.
A-Basin logoA huge thanks to ARAPAHOE BASIN SKI AREAFor more than two decades, A-Basin staff have donated generously to their Employee Environmental Fund, of which FENW has been a steady beneficiary. Last year, more than 150 employees donated, led by A-Basin Director Alan Henceroth. Our enduring THANKS!
 
Business Sponsor SPOTLIGHT on  one of our major business sponsors. Developed by an oncologist for post-radiation skin therapy, Elite products provide soothing anti-aging benefits that are of special use in our intense, high altitude sunshine. Supplier to   Support ELITE - support FENW.
VOLUNTEER
EAST VAIIL TRAILHEAD: The Town of Vail and US Forest Service are again looking for volunteers to help administer surveys at the four trailheads in East Vail in September. These surveys will support a planning effort aimed at better understanding visitor use on these busy trails with goals of alleviating some of the issues the trails face.
 
The dates of the surveys are as follows:
Booth & Gore –Sept 19-22 
Pitkin & Bighorn –Sept 20-29
 
There are 2-4 hour time slots, during which people would hand out and collect surveys and answer any questions that arise. We would give you all of the training you need. This survey is very important to the planning process and will help us with determining next steps. Please contact Mike Beach or Amanda Zinn to sign up! Also, it's a lot of fun!
VOLUNTEER
SAT SEPT 14 Lily Pad Lakes Wetland Crossing Project. Meet at Dillon Ranger District Office (MAP) at 8:30 AM. Safety meeting, project overview, and morning snacks before carpooling to Lily Pad Lakes Trailhead at the top of Wildernest.  Bring gloves, hiking boots, head gear – tools provided.  Sign-up in advance with project leader:  Kim Fenske 
 
Make a donation to FENW....
 
 
... make a difference!

Check out other recent monthly eNewsletters
Hard copy newsletterThe Summer 2019 hard copy newsletter was mailed in mid-May. It contains two dozen fun and informative articles, all of them about FENW - past, present, and future. If you didn't receive a copy, then we don't have your mailing address - please send it to us at info@fenw.org
 
 
Follow us
         
Join us! Next  Planning Meeting
THURSDAY SEPTEMBER 12, 5:30 PM,
USFS offices in Minturn & Silverthorne (video link)
Details at www.fenw.org/

CITY MARKET COMMUNITY REWARDS PROGRAM 
Please register your City Market Value Card, linking it to FENW, which will send rebates to FENW without compromising your earned fuel points. Please note that each card holder may only sign up for one tax exempt organization. THANKS!
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EAGLE POST 39

The newsletter of FENW logoFriends of Eagles Nest Wilderness, apprising you of important activities in and around Eagles Nest, Holy Cross, and Ptarmigan Peak Wilderness Areas. 
Before we begin...
1. The FENW PHOTO CONTEST deadline has been extended to AUGUST 6. Submit your favorite photos (up to 3) from Eagles Nest, Holy Cross, or Ptarmigan Peak Wilderness by August 6. First prize is a canvas-mounted copy, ready to hang. Send photos to photocontest@fenw.org. Read detailed rules HERE
2. SAVE THE DATE: AUG 18  FENW's Annual Meeting / WILDERFEST as we THANK YOU for your support and celebrate our 25th year, new name, new logo, new Award, and more... Free lunch for our member/donors and VWRs.
Sunday, Aug 18. noon-3pm, Frisco Historic Park
August 2019
Dear *|FNAME|*
Greetings! Our topic this month is

The 1935 Gore Range Expedition
By Stan Moore
INTRODUCTION: 
Eighty-four years ago, the Colorado Mountain Club (CMC) made the astonishing choice of Black Creek in the Gore Range as the venue for its annual expedition. This was no Lily Pad Lake (today's most popular destination, hosting hundreds of hikers on a typical summer weekend day). Rather, it was then, as it remains today, the most rugged, inaccessible drainage in the entire range. It took the two dozen women and men three full days just to get from Denver to their campsite, which was still more than 3 trailless miles from the headwall of Black Creek. For the next two weeks, in their jodhpurs and high-laced hob-nailed boots, they joyfully climbed every peak in sight, some for the first recorded time ever.

The crew was led by Charles Moore. His son Stan Moore, popular Colorado historian and lecturer, writes below about the adventure, drawing from his personal archive, as well as that of the CMC.

Stan and his friends reprised the 1935 trip a few years ago, and photos from that trip are also included.

Altogether, the photos are wonderful, and you can see the entire gallery, which is annotated by Stan, by clicking HERE or on any photo

CLICK ANY IMAGE BELOW TO SEE THE ANNOTATED PHOTO GALLERY
THE 1935 CMC GORE RANGE EXPEDITION
By Stan Moore

Twenty four members of the Colorado Mountain Club (CMC) participated in the 1935 summer outing. These folks made historic and unique contributions to mountaineering. That outing was virtually the last home grown, self funded expedition to attain significant mountaineering feats in the lower 48.
 
By the early 1930�s, the Gore Range was probably the last area near an American city which offered a number of unclimbed peaks. Not just virgin routes, but unclimbed peaks.
 
Even for Colorado, the Gore Range is craggy and harsh. Access is difficult and the range was never logged for fuel, railroad ties or mining timbers.
 
For years the range was little explored. Prospectors made a few desultory attempts to pierce the range in the 1860 and 70s. Minerals worth mining weren�t found. The rocky jumble of valleys and sharp peaks enjoyed a lofty peace. Elsewhere, mining, tourism, ranching and railroad development occurred all around.
 
There was an exception to this regal solitude. Not surprisingly, it involved Major John Wesley Powell. He did some climbing in 1868 before he started to boat down the Colorado River. On August 23rd he led the first party of Europeans to the top of Longs Peak. Despite this, Powell is not remembered as a mountaineer. His name is connected with first descents, not first ascents.
 
A month later, Powell climbed a prominent peak in the northern �Eagle River Range.� On September 26 he and his party stood atop what is now called Mount Powell. At 13,534� above sea level, it is the high point of the range. The party left papers with names and the date, stashed in a cocoa tin under a cairn.
 
The peak was next climbed in 1873. A party from the Hayden Survey got to the top on August 28. They found the tin with Powell�s register and added their own paper register with date and names. The peak was listed as Mount Powell in the Hayden Survey Atlas of 1877.
 
The CMC has traditionally put on a summer outing. They last a week or two and go to a specific area to climb, hike, and enjoy. In the early years, with limited access and few people, these outings were exploratory and expeditionary in nature.
 
1935 mapThe March 1935 CMC magazine Trail and Timberline announced the Gore Outing for August 11-24: �Designated as a primitive area by the United States Forest Service, this region is noted for the ruggedness of its peaks, the beauty of its lakes and valleys, and the excellence of its fishing possibilities. It has been this inaccessibility of the Gore Range that has kept it from being chosen as the site of the Summer Outing in previous years. This year, however, the committee is planning to establish camp in the heart of the wildest part of the region.� The best map available wasn't exactly thick with details (right).
 
In the Gore, most peaks are known not by name but by letters of the alphabet. In 1932, the CMC�s Ed Cooper and Carl Erickson combined the alphabet with the Gore. From north to south, Eagles Nest was designated Peak A, Powell B, and so on all the way south. This structure remains today. Starting with Peak C just to the south of Powell, the range is populated with letters not names. This runs to Peak R at least. The USGS doesn�t put these letters on their maps, nor have they approved other names.
 
The Outing Committee had peaks in the Black Creek valley in its crosshairs. The peaks they wanted were named for the middle letters of the alphabet, from D through P.
 
The October 1935 Trail and Timberline reported on the Outing. Referring to upper Black Creek and access: �This spot was made available through the cooperation of the Forest Service in building five miles of trail.�
 
That description is, shall we say, sanitized. Charles Moore was in the advance party. He later recollected how it went. �Some of the descriptions of the trail building in the T&T article are classic understatements.
 
He concluded, �As further evidence that this was just a �way� & not a �trail�, we made no attempt to pack in tent poles. They just wouldn�t go so we cut all poles on site from aspen & small firs.�
 
Moore and the rest of the advance party left Denver August 6. They improved the trail for several days. By Friday the 9th tents were being set up.
 
camp on Black CreekThe camp was set up in a meadow at the north end of the valley of upper Black Creek. The trees open up as one comes up the steeps and there is a nice meadow in the lower valley. It has room for tents and horses to graze. The twenty four participants listed in the T&T were all in camp by Sunday evening the 11th. Also there was Hod Nicholson, a horsepacker from Aspen who had worked with other Summer Outings. He brought in supplies and tents with his horses with the help of several hired hands. When all were set up, there were about fifteen tents for sleeping and cooking. The cook tent was sited about twenty five yards from the creek. Much of the area between tents and creek was marshy. Trees were cut, limbed, and laid as a walkway so the kitchen crew could easily walk to get water.
 
The cook was Homer Taylor. He cooked and fed the group, very well from all reports. He faced some unique challenges. Not only did he need a steady supply of wood and water, but other citizens of the valley took an interest in his duties. One day there was a commotion in the cook tent. Out of the tent burst a bear with a ham in its mouth, followed by a yelling Taylor, waving a frying pan. The bear made good its escape. No word on whether it tried again.
 
Hiking and exploring started right away. On Monday most of the group hiked to lakes at the head of the valley. Legs were stretched, and equipment was fine tuned. People were eager to get out at altitude and use the gear they would be hiking with for two weeks.
 
Equipment was state of the art, the latest in design and utility. Pictures of the expedition show people in denim jeans, laceup leather boots, fabric jackets, and head covering of some sort. Most of the men wore fedora type hats; the women slightly more stylish tams or other women�s hats. The women wore pants, not skirts, and sported boots as well.
 
Moore spoke to the sport and craft of mountaineering in 1935: �Basically it was not greatly different than today except in the equipment. Footgear was hobnailed boots, usually knee high. And if you were really into it they had Swiss edging nails for rock climbing. Sleeping bags were pretty poor compared to today�s down & fiber fill articles. Pack boards and ruck sacks were primitive equipment alongside the current pack styles.�
 Here is a map showing the peaks that they climbed over the next several days:
map of peaks climbedAfter Monday�s warmup, the fun started. On Tuesday, Moore took the main party, of about eighteen or twenty, up Peak L, 13,193�. Most reached the summit ridge and almost a dozen climbed to the summit. This was not a first ascent.
 
The same day, a party of four early went to the head of the valley, to the right of upper Black Lakes. They were Stanley Midgely, Clifton Snively, Maxwell Mery and Pete Alexander. The group climbed what they thought was Peak G. They found themselves on a false summit and for a short while looked up at their mountain. Traversing a ridge with �a precipitous drop� to the true summit, they got the Outing�s first �first� at 13,274. They weren�t done. The trip report describes the rest of their day: �Continuing their traverse, the four worked their way to the top of Peak F at 13,200, for another first ascent. The descent was made to the north and east, part of the way over an unnamed glacier of considerable extent.�
 
The camp was set about three and a half miles from the head of the valley. To reach the peaks from there, hikers had to gain 2000 to 2500 feet of vertical. The country had no trails and was strewn with fallen timber, bogs, and in places avalanche debris. Despite all this, the job got done. Almost every peak summited during these two weeks was bagged in a day. From camp to summit to camp meant that some of those days and hikes were long and demanding.
 
Wednesday the 14th saw a first of the Elephant, 12,732 by a party of four: Stanley Midgely, Clifton Snively, Don McBride, and Carleton Long. They worked up the valley, gained the ridge, and followed it northwest to the summit.
 
What is a �first ascent� and how did they determine if they had one? The climbers looked for signs of people. For example, Peak H was climbed later in the trip. As they neared the summit, it was thought the group was going to be able to brag of another first. But �upon reaching the summit a weathered match stick bore mute evidence of human predecessors.� It was conjectured in the T&T that the climber came in from the Piney Lake drainage to the west. Even today that approach offers much easier access to peaks in the Range.
 
None of the peaks claimed as a first by the Outing Committee bore any evidence of human contact or presence. It is conceivable but unlikely that someone came to the top of one or more of those peaks, looked around, and left with no mark. In that era, it was common, even expected, to leave a cairn or some other evidence of having gained a summit. The �leave no trace� ethic practiced today was far in the future. Nature was still something to be bested, not coexisted with.
 
Thursday the 15th. Everett Long and Carl Blaurock led a large group past the lakes at the head of the valley. Goal for the day was Peak K, 12,858. Some of the group became �converts to the Order of the Snail�, that is, they dropped off at the upper lake, sat, and enjoyed the scenery. The fifteen remaining hikers reached the col between K and J, 12,450�. They followed the ridge north to K. A cairn was constructed and a club register in a tube was deposited. The group returned to the col for a rest and lunch. They then followed the ridge southwest, reaching Peak J (12,924) in less than an hour. Approaching weather dictated a quick retreat, which was made down the northwest ridge to a col at 12,600. From there �an exhilarating slide 1,000 feet down a large snow and ice bank brought them to the highest of the four upper Black Lakes�.� Camp was reached in a drizzling rain.
 
On Saturday the 17th Carl Blaurock led a party through rain, sleet, hail and wind. Objective was Mt. Powell. This was the fifth recorded ascent of the peak. All who started from camp made the summit. The party�s route isn�t clear but was challenging. As the T&T reported, �The Mt Powell trip was the longest made from camp.�
 
That same day, Saturday, a group of four (Bob Lewis, Fred & John Nagel, and Gene Shaetzel) regained the J-K saddle. From there they crossed the valley to bag a first of Peak P (12,965). On the return they came along the ridge, over J for a second ascent.
 
Wednesday the 21st saw the final first ascents of the trip. Fred Nagel, Bob Thallon, Gene Schaetzel and Bob Blair climbed both D (13,047) and E (approx. 12,960). This is the one trip which took more than a day. The group ran out of daylight and had one lagging member; they bivouacked out but returned to camp in time for breakfast.
 
Another group went to Mt Powell, the sixth recorded climb, on Thursday the 22nd. Led by Charles Moore, the group had good weather and all attained the summit. The group found the original summit register (in a cocoa tin) left by Major Powell�s 1868 party. The register left by the 1873 Hayden party was in the same can. Both registers and the can were recovered, brought back to camp, and ultimately turned over to the State Historical Society (they are difficult to read). A standard summit register and tube were left in Powell�s summit cairn.
 
The CMC participants not mentioned by name were also busy. They climbed numerous peaks including M, N, Little Powell (Peak O), and the Elephant twice.
 
Those fortunate enough to have participated in the Gore Range Outing went into tough, unknown country. They explored the valley and climbed numerous peaks, many for the first time. It is an unparalleled but little known accomplishment in American mountaineering.
 
The Trail and Timberline summed things up well: �Participants in the Gore Range Outing had an opportunity for exploring and pioneering in a new region � an opportunity that cannot be had every year�.�
 
Joe Kramarsic had an interesting experience in 2015. He ascended Peak K and traversed over to J then down to camp. He was accompanied most of the way along the ridge by a mountain goat.
 
Members of the 2015 CMC Gore Range Black Creek trip: Helen Carlsen, Joe Kramarsic, Katie Larsen, Dan Martel, Stan Moore, Herb Taylor, Jim Wheeler, Candace Winkle.
The 2014 scouting crew: Dan Martel, Herb Taylor, Stan Moore.
Note, photos are from CMC archives or Stan Moore�s collection.
 
Sources:
 
Personal recollections, Charles Moore.
Colorado Mountain Club Trail and Timberline magazine.
Colorado Mountain Club 1935 Outing photo album.
Roof of the Rockies, a History of Mountaineering in Colorado by William M Bueler.
Mountaineering in the Gore Range, A Record of Explorations, Climbs, Routes and Names,
by Joe Kramarsic.
Personal recollections, Joe Kramarsic.
 PICTURES FROM THE 2015 RETURN TRIP (click any to see the gallery)


And a personal thanks to Katie Sauter, librarian at the American Alpine Club.

 


ABOUT STAN MOORE
 Stan MooreStan Moore is a husband, father, grandfather; a third generation Coloradan; a graduate of the University of Colorado; an author and historian; a Vietnam veteran; a retired small business owner; a (very) amateur blacksmith, and an avid mountaineer, backpacker and desert rat.    Moore and his wife make their home near Denver with a cat that lets them stay there.

BELOW: Charles (Stan's father and the leader of the 1935 Expedition) in 1978 (left) and Stan leaning on the same tree (2015).
Charlie and son Stan
Our backcountry lakes face a growing problem: human waste in the surrounding woods. There's just too much of it to count on natural processes of degradation to do the cleanup work. Short of limiting the number of visitors, the only solution is to CARRY IT OUT, like they do on raft trips in the Grand Canyon. WE CAN HELP! Thanks to a generous donation from RESTOP, volunteer rangers from FENW and FDRD carry a limited supply. ot Toitels To Go. Or order your own. Restop is the leader in personal sanitation and hygiene in the backcountry, as well as many other venues. THANKS RESTOP!
A-Basin logoA huge thanks to ARAPAHOE BASIN SKI AREAFor more than two decades, A-Basin staff have donated generously to their Employee Environmental Fund, of which FENW has been a steady beneficiary. Last year, more than 150 employees donated, led by A-Basin Director Alan Henceroth. Our enduring THANKS!
 
Business Sponsor SPOTLIGHT on  one of our major business sponsors. Developed by an oncologist for post-radiation skin therapy, Elite products provide soothing anti-aging benefits that are of special use in our intense, high altitude sunshine. Supplier to   Support ELITE - support FENW.
 
Make a donation to FENW....
 
 
... make a difference!

2019 TRAIL & CAMPSITE WORK SCHEDULE
Join a crew this summer and help maintain trails and campsites in the Wilderness. No training required!
OVERNIGHT PROJECTS head deep into the backcountry. Gear is packed by our two llamas - Dom and Powell. Contact Trail Boss Tim Drescher to reserve a spot.
July 12-14 - Eagles Nest Wilderness Overnight with llamas (Slate Lakes, Summit County)
August 9-11 - Eagles Nest Wilderness Overnight with llamas (Gore Creek, Eagle County)
DAY PROJECTS (no reservation necessary)
June 8 - National Trails Day with FDRD (Salt Lick Trail) (contact Laurie Alexander)
June 28 - Deluge Lake Trail (contact
Ken Harper)
July 4 and July 10- Gore Creek Trail (contact
Tim Drescher)
July 13 - Weed Pull with the Sierra Club on Acorn Creek (contact
Jim Alexander)
July 26 - Deluge Lake Trail (contact
Ken Harper)
August 13 - Gore Creek Trail (contact Tim Drescher)
August 23 - Deluge Lake Trail (contact Ken Harper)
August 24 - Lily Pad Lake Trail Bridge Construction

 
Follow us
         
Join us! Next  Planning Meeting
THURSDAY AUGUST 8, 5:30 PM,
USFS offices in Minturn & Silverthorne (video link)
Details at www.fenw.org/

Coming up: In our September edition: JENNIFER HOPKINS of the BLUE RIVER WATERSHED GROUP (BRWG) will describe the important work that they do to protect Summit Couty's liquid gold. They are holding their annual Headwater Hops Fest on August 15 at the Dillon Marina.

 
Check out other recent monthly eNewsletters
Hard copy newsletterThe Summer 2019 hard copy newsletter was mailed in mid-May. It contains two dozen fun and informative articles, all of them about FENW - past, present, and future. If you didn't receive a copy, then we don't have your mailing address - please send it to us at info@fenw.org
CITY MARKET COMMUNITY REWARDS PROGRAM 
Please register your City Market Value Card, linking it to FENW, which will send rebates to FENW without compromising your earned fuel points. Please note that each card holder may only sign up for one tax exempt organization. THANKS!
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EAGLE POST 38

The newsletter of FENW logoFriends of Eagles Nest Wilderness, apprising you of important activities in and around Eagles Nest, Holy Cross, and Ptarmigan Peak Wilderness Areas. 
Before we begin...
1. The FENW PHOTO CONTEST is officially OPEN! Submit your favorite photos (up to 3) from Eagles Nest, Holy Cross, or Ptarmigan Peak Wilderness. Send them to photocontest@fenw.org. Deadline is July 31. Read detailed rules HERE
2. SAVE THE DATE: AUG 18  FENW's WILDERFEST as we THANK YOU for your support and celebrate our 25th year, new name, new logo, new Award, and more...
Sunday, Aug 18. noon-3pm, Frisco Historic Park

3. Join us in July for TRAIL & CAMPSITE Projects 
*July 12-14 - Eagles Nest Wilderness Overnight with llamas to Slate Lakes. NO EXPERIENCE NECESSARY! Meet Dom and Powell, our pack llamas who will schlep tools and gear deep into the backcountry for us. Learn more HERE.
*July 13 - Weed Pull with the Sierra Club at 9:30 at Acorn Creek. Expect to hike about a mile, work gloves will be provided. Contact Jim Alexander.
July 2019
Dear *|FNAME|*
Greetings! Our topic this month is

Lessons from Mt. Everest
By Mike Browning
INTRODUCTION: 
Mt EverestWe read the shocking accounts of the crowds on Mt. Everest this spring, and of the tragic deaths, eleven in all, including Coloradan John Kulish. The situation has changed mightily in the 29 years since 1990, when Mike Browning and his small team had the mountain almost entirely to themselves. Mike's essay below is full of fascinating images, thoughtful reflections, and concrete proposals. 

First, be sure to download the pictures, which show startling side-by-side images of his climb in 1990, and news media images of the crowds in 2019.

Second, Mike reflects on those changes and the messages they hold for Wilderness lovers right here in Colorado. His four suggestions are that we take seriously the dangers and challenges of wilderness, that we not focus so intensely on a few places, that we respect the resource (see our special appeal for Restop below his essay), and that we prepare for the inevitable restrictions that will be needed to protect the wilderness as the number of visitors soars. 

Third, Mike offers a realistic plan for Everest itself, based on the four principles above, in which climbers must earn their permit to brave the world's highest peak.

We at FENW are glad that Mike, as he enters retirement from his law practice, has chosen to join us. His essay significantly enhances our ongoing efforts to think globally and act locally.

LESSONS FROM EVEREST
 
 On the summit of Everest           At 8:45 a.m. on May 10, 1990 I was fortunate enough to stand on top of Mt. Everest with five close friends.  We were the only ones there.  I was the 37th American ever to summit.  In recent years hundreds of climbers summit each season, and even on the same day. You have probably seen the pictures of the long line of climbers waiting to get to the summit.  Can we learn anything from this with respect to our local Wilderness Areas? I think so.
 
Mike Browning on Everest            We applied for our Everest permit in 1983 after summiting Mount Shishapangma (the 14th highest peak in the world) without Sherpas, porters or bottled oxygen (it was the first American ascent). We had previously climbed over a hundred other peaks around the world.  We thought we were ready to take on Everest.  At the time, however, the Nepalese government was  issuing only a single permit for a single team each season � one in the Fall and one in Spring.  The first Spring permit was not available until 1990. We continued to hone our skills, climbing Makalu (the 5th highest peak in the world) in 1987, Aconcagua (the highest point in South America) in 1989, and other high peaks.
 
In 1989, the Nepalese government changed the rules and began issuing multiple permits for Everest.  In 1990, there were two other groups on the mountain with us, still with a total of less than a dozen climbers.  One of those groups was what I believe was the first commercial trip on Everest � four experienced Italian climbers guided by Rob Hall of �Into Thin Air� fame. 
 
Base CampThis year, the Nepalese government issued 381 permits.  With porters, Sherpas and camp staff, there were well over 1,000 people in Base Camp.  It is now a much different experience than in 1990. 
 
Summit RidgeIn 1990 Everest was still pretty much a wilderness.  We had no cell phones or satellite phones. There were no helicopters for rescue or otherwise.  We camped in tents during the two- week trek to Base Camp, whereas nowadays there are Tea Houses all along the way.  Once in Base Camp we were cut off from the outside world, except for a mail runner carrying in letters (remember those?)  every couple weeks. No party tents, no shower tents, no gourmet food, no calls home, no weather forecasts. No crowds.
 
Crossing the Yellow BandBut wilderness is fragile and all too often fleeting.  That applies both to Everest and Wilderness Areas in the United States.  We tend to love to death the places we love.  Easy transport, commercial trips, light-weight equipment, social media, increasing affluence and the other conveniences of modern life make venturing into wilderness a lot easier, so more and more people do it.  But to what end?
 
Perhaps Everest should teach us some lessons.  First, take wilderness seriously.  People still die on Everest.  People can still die in the Eagles Nest Wilderness. Nature doesn�t care whether you live or die, so you must.  Just because it�s easy to get there doesn�t mean that it will be a walk in the park. 
 
On the Lhotse FaceSecond, we need to spread our love out.  There are thousands of mountains other than Everest.  If you want bragging rights, give to charity.  If you want to prove yourself, pick a mountain without fixed ropes and oxygen tanks all the way to the top.  Pick a trail other than Lily Pad or Booth Lake.  And create more Wilderness areas, both in Colorado and elsewhere. 
 
Third, respect the resource.  If Everest can succumb to garbage, so can Cataract Lake and Booth Falls.  One person�s presence may seem to have no impact, but cumulative impacts can be destructive.  Remember that and tread lightly.    
 
Fourth, the day may come when we need to issue permits or use reservation systems to protect our most favorite areas �e.g.. Hanging Lake.   Not everyone can have everything they want whenever they want it when there are so many of us.  Demographics are destiny.  Donate to Planned Parenthood. 
 
As for Everest, powerful forces have led to the increase in climbers.  It brings money into the coffers of the Nepalese government.  It provides jobs for hundreds of local people who have few other opportunities.  It is big business for guiding companies, both local and foreign. Any solution to the Everest problem will fail unless it recognizes and works with, rather than against, these economic forces. 
 
Here is my solution to �the Everest problem.�  Require that anyone wanting a permit to climb Everest first summit some other 8,000 meter peak.  There are thirteen others in the Himalaya, eight of which are in Nepal.  The five others are in equally poor areas in Pakistan and Tibet. This would spread out the crowds and actually increase permit revenue for the Nepalese government.  It would encourage and allow guiding companies to offer trips to other wonderful mountains, provide more work for Sherpas and porters, and help develop the tourist industry in other parts of Nepal.  And it would ensure that those attempting to climb Everest have the requisite experience and skills to not be a danger to themselves and others. Many super strong people don�t acclimate well above 20,000 feet. The only way to know if you will is to have climbed and lived at high altitudes for extended periods before. Figure this out before you go to Everest, not once you get there. Finally, it would help weed out the �one off� climbers who just want bragging rights. Everest should not be your first big mountain.  Earn the right to be there.  My proposal flows with the economic forces, not against them, so it would seem to have a chance of adoption.
 
Having inexperienced people on Everest not only ruins the aesthetics of the place, it is dangerous for everyone else on the mountain, both climbers and Sherpas. A conga line moves only as fast as its slowest member. So do people clipped into a fixed line.   Earn your opportunity to be on Everest by proving your skills, not just writing a check. 
 
Back home let�s recognize the fragility of our own wilderness areas.  Take care of them. Respect them.  Increase them.  Once they are gone, they are gone forever.  Help educate others about the value and fragility of wilderness.  One way of doing so is to support FENW. 
 


ABOUT MIKE BROWNING:
Mike BrowningMike Browning is one of our newest Board members.  He was born and raised in Montana. After graduating from Yale Law School in 1977, he returned to his beloved Rocky Mountains and put down roots in Colorado.  Mike practiced water law in Boulder for 40 years. He has done an extensive amount of high-altitude mountaineering throughout the world, beginning with all the Colorado 14ers.  His notable summits include the first American ascent of Shishapangma in Tibet in1983 (the 14th highest peak in the world), Mt. Everest in 1990, and each of the other Seven Summits (the highest peak in each of the seven continents).  He and his wife, Frances Hartogh, have spent 30 years hiking throughout both the Eagles Nest and Holy Cross Wilderness Areas. Now that they have both retired they hope to spend even more time in their second home in Vail and do even more hikes in our fabulous Wilderness Areas.  
What do we want? NONE OF YOUR BUSINESS! That's right, we're talking how you do your business in the Wilderness - that business - specifically NUMBER TWO. Exposed human waste is a seriously growing problem, especially around backcountry lakes, and it's high time to start packing it out, just like rafters do in the Grand Canyon. So make a new business plan for your next Wilderness trip - check out RESTOP, the leader in personal sanitation and hygiene in the backcountry, as well as many other venues. They have GENEROUSLY DONATED SAMPLE WAG BAGS to FDRD and FENW, which our Volunteer Wilderness Rangers will be exhibiting (not demonstrating!) and handing out to backcountry visitors this summer. THANKS RESTOP!
By wag bagthe way WAG is an acronym for Waste Alleviation and Gelling. Yeah, someone got paid to come up with that. A powder absorbs the moisture (and the smell). The bag fits conveniently inside another bag and is good for 2-3 uses.
A-Basin logoA huge thanks to ARAPAHOE BASIN SKI AREAFor more than two decades, A-Basin staff have donated generously to their Employee Environmental Fund, of which FENW has been a steady beneficiary. Last year, more than 150 employees donated, led by A-Basin Director Alan Henceroth. Our enduring THANKS!
 
Business Sponsor SPOTLIGHT on  one of our major business sponsors. Developed by an oncologist for post-radiation skin therapy, Elite products provide soothing anti-aging benefits that are of special use in our intense, high altitude sunshine. Supplier to   Support ELITE - support FENW.
 
Make a donation to FENW....
 
 
... make a difference!

2019 TRAIL & CAMPSITE WORK SCHEDULE
Join a crew this summer and help maintain trails and campsites in the Wilderness. No training required!
OVERNIGHT PROJECTS head deep into the backcountry. Gear is packed by our two llamas - Dom and Powell. Contact Trail Boss Kate DeMorest to reserve a spot.
July 12-14 - Eagles Nest Wilderness Overnight with llamas (Slate Lakes, Summit County)
August 9-11 - Eagles Nest Wilderness Overnight with llamas (Gore Creek, Eagle County)
DAY PROJECTS (no reservation necessary)
June 8 - National Trails Day with FDRD (Salt Lick Trail) (contact Laurie Alexander)
June 28 - Deluge Lake Trail (contact Ken Harper)
July 4 and July 10- Gore Creek Trail (contact Tim Drescher)
July 13 - Weed Pull with the Sierra Club on Acorn Creek (contact Jim Alexander)
July 26 - Deluge Lake Trail (contact Ken Harper)
August 13 - Gore Creek Trail (contact Tim Drescher)
August 23 - Deluge Lake Trail (contact Ken Harper)
August 24 - Lily Pad Lake Trail Bridge Construction (contact Laurie Alexander)

 
Follow us
         
Join us! Next  Planning Meeting
THURSDAY JULY 11, 5:30 PM,
USFS offices in Minturn & Silverthorne (video link)
Details at www.fenw.org/

Check out other recent monthly eNewsletters 
Hard copy newsletter
The Spring 2019 hard copy newsletter was mailed in mid-May. It contains two dozen fun and informative articles, all of them about FENW - past, present, and future. If you didn't receive a copy, then we don't have your mailing address - please send it to us at info@fenw.org

CITY MARKET COMMUNITY REWARDS PROGRAM 
Please register your City Market Value Card, linking it to FENW, which will send rebates to FENW without compromising your earned fuel points. Please note that each card holder may only sign up for one tax exempt organization. THANKS!
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EAGLE POST 37

The newsletter of FENW logoFriends of Eagles Nest Wilderness, apprising you of important activities in and around Eagles Nest, Holy Cross, and Ptarmigan Peak Wilderness Areas. 
Before we begin... SAVE THE DATE -
FENW's WILDERFEST
Sunday, August 18, noon-3pm, Frisco Historic Park
Join us in 2019 for FENW TRAIL & CAMPSITE WORK 
*June 8 - National Trails Day with FDRD (Salt Lick Trail)
*July 12-14 - Eagles Nest Wilderness Overnight with llamas (Slate Lakes, Summit County)
*July 13 - Weed Pull with the Sierra Club at 9:30 at Acorn Creek. Expect to hike about a mile, work gloves will be provided. Contact Jim at jimofcolorado@gmail.com
*August 9-11 - Eagles Nest Wilderness Overnight with llamas (Gore Creek, Eagle County)
*Aug 24 - Lily Pad Lake Trail Bridge Construction.
 NO EXPERIENCE NECESSARY! Meet Dom and Powell, our llamas who will pack in tools and gear to the backcountry. Learn more HERE.
June 2019
Dear *|FNAME|*
Gr
eetings! Our topic this month is

OVER & UNDER - Building safe highway crossings for wildlife in Colorado
Part I: (LAST MONTH): State Highway 9 in Grand County (completed in 2016)
Part 2 (THIS ISSUE): Safe Passages on Vail Pass in Summit County
INTRODUCTION: 
In last month's eNewsletter, PAIGE SINGER described the incredible success of State Highway 9 Wildlife and Safety Improvement Project (SH9 Project) in the lower Blue River Valley. Designed to minimize wildlife-vehicle collisions (WVCs), a series of five underpasses and two spectacular overpasses, plus an array of wildlife fencing, escape ramps, and wildlife guards has reduced WVCs by nearly 90% since its completion in 2016.

As they continue to monitor the SH9 Project, Paige and her colleagues are also turning to a new challenge, this one on I-70 between Copper Mountain and the summit of Vail Pass (highlighted on the map below). It's called the Vail Pass Wildlife Byway and was identified as a priority in the Summit County Safe Passages Connectivity Plan for Wildlife.
MAP
near WVCAs Paige describes below, I-70 bisects important wildlife habitat between Eagles Nest and Holy Cross Wildernesses, with tens of thousands of vehicles per day zipping along the 4-lane highway. The plan calls for wildlife over- and under-passes, like the SH9 Project, with some new twists. Fundraising has begun, with $200,000 in the bank to fund the planning stages.

Also included is an exciting citizen-science project led by Rocky Mountain Wild and Denver Zoo; it's called the Colorado Corridors Project. Read about it, and get involved in wildlife monitoring with remote-triggered cameras! (Photos below from CO Corridors Project - Rocky Mountain Wild & Denver Zoo)

Summit County Safe Passages and the Vail Pass Wildlife Byway
By PAIGE SINGER
Summit County is unrivaled in its outstanding beauty and outdoor recreation opportunities. As a result, new residents are moving into the county at an unprecedented rate � up 10% in 8 years - and visitation has skyrocketed with over 7.4 million visitors a year. Wildlife in Summit County appeals to residents and visitors alike, drawing hunters, anglers, photographers and wildlife watchers from across the globe. As the population in Summit County grows, so does the amount of traffic on the county�s roadways. More vehicles on the road mean more challenges to wildlife as they seek food and water, presenting a heightened risk of wildlife-vehicle collisions. Each year in Colorado, 3,600 wildlife related crashes are reported, with an additional 2,000-4,000 unreported incidents with deer and smaller animals. Moreover, collisions with wildlife pose a serious safety concern for motorists, resulting in property damage, injuries and fatalities, at a cost to society of $66.4 million per year in Colorado.

To address this problem in Summit County, the Dillon Ranger District of the White River National Forest, in coordination with a diverse group of stakeholders, developed the Summit County Safe Passages Connectivity Plan for Wildlife to provide a common vision for multi-species landscape connectivity throughout the county. Summit County Safe Passages, the vision of which is to create collaborative solutions for safe wildlife passage across Summit County roadways through active participation from community stakeholders, emerged in 2017 following the year-long planning effort. Summit County Safe Passages is organized by Ashley Nettles with the U.S. Forest Service and Julia Kintsch with ECO-resolutions and has 24 partner organizations, including local, state and federal agencies, open space organizations, county and town planning departments, ski areas, recreation groups, conservation organizations and interested community members.

The Vail Pass Wildlife Byway on Interstate 70 (I-70), between Copper Mountain Resort and the top of Vail Pass, was identified by Summit County Safe Passages as a top priority area in which to focus wildlife mitigation efforts in the near term. The Byway lies entirely within the White River National Forest and connects two important wilderness areas - the Eagles Nest Wilderness to the northeast of I-70 and the Holy Cross Wilderness to the southwest. It provides important habitat for several wildlife species including mule deer, elk, moose, black bear, mountain lion and one of the few known breeding populations of Canada lynx in Colorado outside the southwest corner of the state. Yet up to 22,000 vehicles a day on this stretch of I-70 present a significant barrier to wildlife movement, with many animals no longer attempting to cross the roadway. Those that do, often do so unsuccessfully. 

Wildlife crossing structures, such as overpasses and underpasses, are the most effective way to create safer roads for wildlife and people, providing access to habitat and resources for wildlife and reducing wildlife-related vehicle collisions by upwards of 95%. To restore connectivity in the Vail Pass Wildlife Byway, the Summit County Safe Passages Plan recommends three wildlife crossing structures � one overpass and two underpasses � to allow for the safe passage of wildlife over or under I-70 (see MAP above). This section of I-70 is divided by a wide median and the three proposed wildlife crossing structures need to span only the westbound lanes of traffic. Once over or under the westbound lanes via the proposed structures, wildlife can pass under one of the five existing eastbound highway bridges to complete their safe crossing of I-70.

An effort to implement the mitigation recommendations in the Vail Pass Wildlife Byway is underway, co-led by Cinnamon Levi-Flinn with the Colorado Department of Transportation and Paige Singer with Rocky Mountain Wild, with support from the U.S. Forest Service, Colorado Parks and Wildlife, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Denver Zoo, Wilderness Workshop, Copper Mountain Resort, ECO-resolutions, Friends of the Dillon Ranger District, Summit Eagle Wilderness Alliance, Walking Mountains, Vail Resorts and Arapahoe Basin Ski Area. This inter-organizational team aims to implement these recommendations through community outreach and fundraising for design and construction. Already, local ski areas have contributed nearly $200,000, which is targeted for a design and engineering study slated to begin in the summer of 2019. 

In addition, the Colorado Corridors Project has been engaging the local community in wildlife monitoring at the proposed overpass location since 2015. The CCP is co-led by Paige Singer with Rocky Mountain Wild and Erica Garroutte with Denver Zoo in coordination with the U.S. Forest Service, Colorado Parks and Wildlife, the Western Transportation Institute and Walking Mountains. Wildlife monitoring is an essential step in determining whether wildlife crossing structures are effective in restoring connectivity for wildlife. Through stakeholder visits and citizen science monitoring, the CCP aims to build broad community awareness and support for the Vail Pass Wildlife Byway implementation effort. Volunteers help maintain remote-triggered cameras in the field and identify and catalog species captured on the cameras through an online platform developed by Zooniverse.org. Sign up HERE to help out in the field this summer.

 
ABOUT THE TEAM:
Paige SingerPaige Singer is a conservation biologist with Rocky Mountain Wild where she specializes in transportation ecology and geospatial information systems analyses. She co-leads the implementation effort in the Vail Pass Wildlife Byway and the Colorado Corridors Project. She has been working with partners around the state to collect and analyze data related to wildlife-road interactions, wildlife linkages and the effectiveness of wildlife crossing structures.

Ashley NettlesAshley Nettles is a wildlife biologist with the Dillon Ranger District of the White River National Forest, and a lead organizer of Summit County Safe Passages. Her interests are in landscape connectivity for multiple species as well as habitat restoration, but she gets the most enjoyment out of working collaboratively with community groups, finding innovative solutions to complex environmental problems. A huge part of this is building trust and strengthening partnerships among agencies and the public.

Julia Kintsch is Senior Ecologist and Principal at ECO-resolutions ecological resource consulting, and a lead organizer of Summit County Safe Passages. She specializes in transportation ecology, wildlife connectivity, and the collaborative processes needed to achieve conservation objectives across large landscapes. In addition to working with Summit County Safe Passages, she is leading the research effort evaluating the effectiveness of wildlife crossings mitigation on State Highway 9 in Grand County, and is helping to develop Colorado�s Wildlife and Transportation Alliance.

Cinnamon Levi-Flinn is a biologist with the Colorado Department of Transportation and co-leads the implementation effort in the Vail Pass Wildlife Byway. Within her organization, she is responsible for biological assessments, and project development and NEPA management, which includes inter-agency collaboration and coordination. She participates on panels for numerous research studies across the western slope such as the State Highway 9 wildlife crossing mitigation research and the Western Slope Wildlife Prioritization Study, as well as other local efforts to minimize wildlife-vehicle conflicts.

Erica Garroutte is the Community Engagement Manager in Denver Zoo's Field Conservation Department and co-leads the Colorado Corridors Project. Applying expertise in landscape ecology and community engagement, Erica provides support for the Colorado Corridors Project�s collaborative efforts to engage community stakeholders in efforts to mitigate the impacts of I-70 on wildlife populations along Vail Pass. 

 
CAN WE TALK? It's not something people like to talk - or even think - about, but it's a growing reality: human poop in the wilderness is a problem, and it's getting worse. For example, in 2016, Rangers removed 273 PILES OF HUMAN POOP from the Maroon Bells Wilderness, where a mandatory permit system for overnight backpacking is now in force. Here in Eagle & Summit Counties, we are headed in that direction - our volunteers report increasing signs of improperly disposed human waste in the Wilderness. 
Enter RESTOP, the leader in personal sanitation and hygiene in the backcountry, as well as other venues. They have GENEROUSLY DONATED 200 WAG BAGS to us, which our Volunteer Wilderness Rangers will be exhibiting (not demonstrating!) and handing out to backcountry visitors this summer. THANKS RESTOP!
A-Basin logoA huge thanks to ARAPAHOE BASIN SKI AREAFor more than two decades, A-Basin staff have donated generously to their Employee Environmental Fund, of which FENW has been a steady beneficiary. Last year, more than 150 employees donated, led by A-Basin Director Alan Henceroth. Our enduring THANKS!
 
Business Sponsor SPOTLIGHT on  one of our major business sponsors. Developed by an oncologist for post-radiation skin therapy, Elite products provide soothing anti-aging benefits that are of special use in our intense, high altitude sunshine. Supplier to   Support ELITE - support FENW.
CORRECTION
Beau SchuetteWe regret that, in our recent hard copy newsletter, we misidentified the year that BEAU SCHUETTE (right) died, and his age. He died in 2017 at age 35. His family and friends have established two significant funds for Wilderness preservation and protection in his honor.

Make a donation to FENW....
 
 
... make a difference!

Volunteer Wilderness Rangers met more than 12,000 wilderness visitors in 2018. It's too late to sign up this year (training is June 8), but you can learn more about the program here.

Join us! Next  Planning Meeting
THURSDAY JUNE 13, 5:30 PM,
USFS offices in Minturn & Silverthorne (video link)
Details at www.fenw.org/

Check out other recent monthly eNewsletters 
Follow us
         
Hard copy newsletter
The Spring 2019 hard copy newsletter was mailed in mid-May. It contains two dozen fun and informative articles, all of them about FENW - past, present, and future. If you didn't receive a copy, then we don't have your mailing address - please send it to us at info@fenw.org

CITY MARKET COMMUNITY REWARDS PROGRAM 
Please register your City Market Value Card, linking it to FENW, which will send rebates to FENW without compromising your earned fuel points. Please note that each card holder may only sign up for one tax exempt organization. THANKS!
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EAGLE POST 36

The newsletter of FENW logoFriends of Eagles Nest Wilderness, apprising you of important activities in and around Eagles Nest, Holy Cross, and Ptarmigan Peak Wilderness Areas. 
USFS patchBEFORE WE BEGIN - BECOME A VOLUNTEER WILDERNESS RANGER - Applications are now open but time is short. Training day is SATURDAY JUNE 8. You will meet, greet, and teach Wilderness visitors, and will wear the same patch (right) as real Forest Service Wilderness Rangers. More INFO. View the application here.
May 2019
Dear *|FNAME|*
Gr
eetings! Our topic this month is

OVER & UNDER - Building safe highway crossings for wildlife in Colorado
Part I: (THIS ISSUE): State Highway 9 in Grand County (completed in 2016)
Part 2 (JUNE ISSUE): Safe Passages on Vail Pass in Summit County
INTRODUCTION: 
In 2016 CDOT and its partners completed the construction of seven wildlife crossings along State Highway 9 as it descends through the lower Blue River Valley. Five underpasses and two spectacular overpasses, plus an array of wildlife fencing, escape ramps, and wildlife guards were built (see MAP for details). Of course, the success of the project is being carefully monitored, which is the topic of this month's eNewsletter. Paige Singer and her colleagues from a variety of organizations are responsible for the research that documents many details of the project, now that it is built. But like pudding, for all the details of its creation, the proof is in the eating, and as Paige describes, the State Highway 9 (SH9) Project is proving to be phenomenally successful in preventing wildlife-vehicle collisions.
 
They are not resting on their laurels. Now, a new coalition of organizations, called Summit County Safe Passages, which includes some organizations involved in the SH9 Project, is turning its attention to new targets, including the I-70 corridor in Summit County on Vail Pass. Paige co-leads that nascent effort, and will write about it in next month's eNewsletter. If "nothing breeds success like success", Paige and her colleagues are destined for kudos once again.

State Highway 9 Wildlife and Safety Improvement Project:
Paving the Way for Similar Projects Across Colorado
By Paige Singer
Paige SIngerState Highway 9 was always an important roadway for my family - we lived in rural Craig - as we sought recreation opportunities in central Colorado, the big cities on the Front Range, and beyond. I have since moved away from Craig, but State Highway 9 - all 140 miles of it - remains a major transportation route for people traveling to and from Kremmling, Silverthorne, Breckenridge and Fairplay, all the way to its terminus near Canyon City and the Royal Gorge.

Yet this vital roadway is also the scene of numerous casualties. For example, from 1997 through 2016, there were more than 600 reported vehicular crashes just along an 11-mile stretch between the Colorado River south of Kremmling and the Grand-Summit county line, which resulted in 200 people injured and 16 people killed.

State Highway 9 runs through the lower reaches of the Blue River Valley, a vast sagebrush landscape that provides winter range and year-round habitat for wildlife like mule deer, elk, moose, bears and mountain lions. Animals that spend the summer up in Colorado�s high country move down to the lower elevations on the valley floor to escape the deep snow and access the food and water they need to survive the winter. Because State Highway 9 is located low in the valley, wildlife, in particular mule deer, concentrate near the highway, sometimes crossing the roadway multiple times a day. With each crossing, they risk the possibility of colliding with oncoming traffic. Prior to 2016, more than 60 animals were killed in wildlife behicle collisions (WVCs) on this stretch of road each winter.

Wildlife OverpassIn order to address these safety issues, the State Highway 9 Wildlife and Safety Improvement Project (SH9 Project) was completed in late 2016 on the 11-mile stretch of State Highway 9 just south of Kremmling. This project included the construction of Colorado�s first wildlife overpasses (two in count) and five underpasses, allowing wildlife to travel safely over or under the highway. In addition to these large crossing structures, which are connected with 8-foot high wildlife exclusion fencing, small and medium species can use several smaller structures to cross under the roadway without being hit. Escape ramps, placed intermittently along the wildlife fence, provide an escape route for animals inadvertently trapped on the highway side of the fence.

GraphPrior to construction of these wildlife crossing structures, an average of 56.4 vehicle collisions with mule deer and elk occurred annually on this stretch of highway. WVCs were the most common type of accident reported to law enforcement, accounting for 60% of all accidents.  As shown in the graph, since the construction of this mitigation project (completed in two phases as depicted by the arrows), there has been nearly a 90% reduction in WVCs with mule deer and elk in the project area. Researchers have documented mule deer successfully using the wildlife crossing structures to move safely over or under the roadway more than 45,000 times. Some of these movements are by the same individuals but every time an animal used one of the crossing structures, the possibility of a collision with a vehicle was avoided! Mule deer aren�t the only wildlife to use the crossings � elk, white-tailed deer, moose, bighorn sheep, pronghorn, bears, mountain lions, coyotes, red foxes, bobcats, badgers, hares, skunks, raccoons and even river otters have been documented safely crossing over or under the roadway by way of the crossing structures.
Click for photo gallery
This SH9 project was the result of an unprecedented collaboration between Colorado Parks and Wildlife, the Colorado Department of Transportation, Grand County, the privately-owned Blue Valley Ranch and the Citizens for Safe Highway 9 committee as well as a number of other partners. Currently a team of researchers, led by Julia Kintsch from ECO-resolutions and Dr. Patricia Cramer, is studying the wildlife crossing structures and other components of the mitigation project to assess their effectiveness in allowing safe wildlife passage over or under State Highway 9 and reducing wildlife-vehicle collisions. The research study is funded by Colorado Parks and Wildlife and Colorado Department of Transportation with assistance from the Woodcock Foundation, Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation and the Muley Fanatic Foundation. If you haven�t already, take a drive to check out Colorado�s very first wildlife overpasses and see the project that is paving the way for similar projects around the state.
 
ABOUT PAIGE SINGER & COLLEAGUES: 
Paige & Zoey SingerPaige Singer, biologist and Geographical Information System (GIS) specialist wth Rocky Mountain Wild, is part of the research team studying wildlife crossing structures on State Highway 9 to determine their effectiveness at reducing wildlife-vehicle collisions while allowing wildlife to move safely over or under the roadway. As a research assistant on the project, Paige works with these amazing people behind the research effort:

Dr. Patricia CramerDr. Patricia Cramer is an independent researcher, nationally recognized in transportation wildlife research. She works with state departments of transportation and wildlife agencies to help research and design the best wildlife crossing and mitigation measures, and to bring wildlife considerations into the transportation planning process. Dr. Cramer�s work has earned awards from Utah Department of Transportation (2015), Federal Highways Environmental Excellence Awards (2013, 2011), Utah Wildlife Society (2013), the Mule Deer Foundation (2012), and Denver Zoo (2010). She co-leads the State Highway 9 research effort with...

Julia Kintsch... Julia Kintsch is Senior Ecologist and Principal at ECO-resolutions ecological resource consulting. She specializes in transportation ecology, wildlife connectivity, and the collaborative processes needed to achieve conservation objectives across large landscapes. For more than a decade, Julia has played an instrumental role in advancing the field of road ecology in Colorado. She co-leads the State Highway 9 research effort with Dr. Cramer.


Michelle CowardinMichelle Cowardin is a wildlife biologist with Colorado Parks and Wildlife, and the lead biologist on the development of the State Highway 9 Wildlife and Safety Improvement Project. Michelle�s wildlife expertise and passion for the project helped to make it a huge success. In addition to working extensively with the Colorado Department of Transportation during the design and construction phases, she is also the Colorado Parks and Wildlife project lead for the State Highway 9 research effort. When not keeping wildlife and the traveling public safe in the Blue River Valley, she works to preserve species of concern and habitat in the Middle Park area. 

Joy PhelanJoy Phelan is an independent researcher assisting primarily with retrieving, entering, and analyzing data.  She has processed thousands of photos for the SH9 project and enjoys seeing how the local wildlife adapt to these structures.  When not working on photos, she's either working with the US Forest Service as a Fish and Wildlife Technician or going on adventures with her son. 

 
A-Basin logoA huge thanks to ARAPAHOE BASIN SKI AREAFor more than two decades, A-Basin staff have donated generously to their Employee Environmental Fund, of which FENW has been a steady beneficiary. Last year, more than 150 employees donated, led by A-Basin Director Alan Henceroth. Our enduring THANKS!
A-Basin slopes
Business Sponsor SPOTLIGHT on  one of our two major business sponsors. Developed by an oncologist for post-radiation skin therapy, Elite products provide soothing anti-aging benefits that are of special use in our intense, high altitude sunshine. Supplier to   Support ELITE -support FENW.
Make a donation to FENW....
 
... make a difference!

Join us in 2019 
FENW TRAIL & CAMPSITE WORK 
 � Sat Jun 8 - Volunteer Wilderness Ranger Training
� Sat Jun 8 - National Trails Day with FDRD (Salt Lick Trail
� Fri-Sun Jul 12-14 - Slate Lakes Overnight Trail & Campsite work with pack llamas
� Fri-Sun Aug 9-11 - Gore Creek Overnight Trail & Campsite work with pack llamas
� Sat Aug 18 - WilderFest (Frisco Historic Park)
� Sat Aug 24 - Lily Pad Lake Trail Bridge Construction
� Dates TBD:
� Sierra Club Weed Pull
� Betty Ford Botanic Gardens Visit
 NO EXPERIENCE NECESSARY! Meet Dom and Powell, our llamas who will pack in tools and gear to the backcountry. Learn more HERE.
Volunteer Wilderness Rangers met more than 10,000 wilderness visitors in 2018. Become a VWR in 2019 - training will be held on Saturday, June 8. Learn more here.

Join us! for our next  Planning Meeting
THURSDAY MAY  9, 5:30 PM,
USFS offices in Minturn & Silverthorne (video link)
Details at www.fenw.org/
Follow us
         

Hard copy newsletterThe Spring 2019 hard copy newsletter will be ready soon. Sent by mail, it will contain two dozen fun and informative articles, all of them about FENW - past, present, and future. If you didn't receive last fall's edition, then we don't have your mailing address - please send it to us at info@fenw.org
Check out other recent monthly eNewsletters 
CITY MARKET COMMUNITY REWARDS PROGRAM 
Please register your City Market Value Card, linking it to FENW, which will send rebates to FENW without compromising your earned fuel points. Please note that each card holder may only sign up for one tax exempt organization. THANKS!
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EAGLE POST 35

The newsletter of FENW logoFriends of Eagles Nest Wilderness, apprising you of important activities in and around Eagles Nest, Holy Cross, and Ptarmigan Peak Wilderness Areas. 
USFS patchBEFORE WE BEGIN - Applications are now open for Volunteer Wilderness Rangers. Meet, greet, and teach Wilderness visitors. Training day is SATURDAY JUNE 8. You will wear the same patch (right) as real Forest Service Wilderness Rangers. More INFO. View the application here.
April 2019
Dear *|FNAME|*
Gr
eetings! Our topic this month is

Berlaimont - a huge disruptive luxury development proposed for an in-holding deep inside the White River National Forest
INTRODUCTION: "The Berlaimont plan would impact a critical wildlife area and throw that fragile stability into decline." Those are the words of Bill Andree, 38-year veteran Eagle County District Wildlife Manager for the Colorado Division of Parks & Wildlife.
     With elk herds in serious decline, hundreds of citizens attended a rally - "Buck Berlaimont" - on March 16 to protest a developer's plan to build a paved two-lane road extending more than five miles through the White River National Forest to a 680 acre in-holding slated for nineteen luxury houses. The road will impede migratory routes and impact winter habitat for deer (map), elk (map), lynx (map), and other species.
            Below, Peter Hart, Staff Attorney for,Wilderness Workshop describes in detail the impacts that the road would have on wildlife. He writes, "Berlaimont Estates is not reasonable land use. It is ludicrous backcountry sprawl.� the Berlaimont Estates access road would slice the [deer] herd�s migratory route in half. It would impede migration, pave over forage, and drive away animals that increasingly have nowhere to go."
            Peter asks for your urgent support, seeking to convince the US Forest Service to reconsider its preliminary conclusion that the road is justified.
Berlaimont - google earth

   Paving sensitive wildlife habitat
for backcountry sprawl
is not reasonable land use.
 Peter Hart
Conservation Analyst/Staff Attorney
Wilderness Workshop

Having grown up in the Eagle Valley, I know it is a stunning place. Public lands and a rich natural environment sustain an amazing quality of life for local residents. Clean air and water, majestic mountains, raging rivers, abundant wildlife and recreation opportunities are foundational to the area�s character and economy. We should be uniformly committed to protecting these values.
 
The population of Eagle County is expected to double in coming decades. That growth will seriously impact these values. More than ever before, it�s in our best interest to be thoughtful about how and where new development occurs. Yet we continue to entertain and approve land use proposals that diminish and jeopardize community values.
 
The U.S. Forest Service is currently considering approval of a new two-lane paved road across public lands north of Edwards to facilitate development of Berlaimont Estates�19 new mansions, 2,000 vertical feet above town. The sprawling subdivision would be developed on a parcel that is completely surrounded by National Forest. Unlike other nearby neighborhoods (e.g., Wildridge and Mountain Star), public land managers must approve a new road across lands owned by you and me to facilitate this proposal. To approve the new road, the Forest Service must deem Berlaimont Estates a �reasonable� land use.
 
Berlaimont, FranceBerlaimont Estates is not reasonable land use. It is ludicrous backcountry sprawl. The proposed access road isn�t a little driveway. It is a road nearly 30-feet wide, bermed, walled, plowed and paved thoroughfare switchbacking thousands of feet up a very visible hillside to provide year-round access to �estates� deep within the National Forest. According to the Forest Service�s analysis the walls necessary to support this road could be more than 1,000 feet long and dozens of feet tall. Migrating wildlife aren�t gonna just hop over these new walls.
 
The south-facing slopes that would be impacted and bisected by this road contain some of the last best winter wildlife habitat in the area. Winter wildlife habitat is not some trivial designation; it is the most important determinant of wildlife survival during seasons when food is scarce and animals persist on starvation rations.

Developing this winter habitat will reduce deer and elk populations that are already in tail-spinning decline. Old-timers remember huge herds of deer and elk in the area, so huge that migrations shut down traffic on I-70. That doesn�t happen anymore�mostly because development of the best winter range has decimated herds.
 
These are the consequences of our decisions. Destruction of winter habitat means that landscapes no longer support wildlife in historic numbers. Importantly, these wildlife resources are unique. The Piney River deer herd is the second largest migratory deer herd in Colorado. That is something to be proud of, something to protect. But the Berlaimont Estates access road would slice the herd�s migratory route in half. It would impede migration, pave over forage, and drive away animals that increasingly have nowhere to go.
 
roads & house sitesThe Forest Service has been trying to protect this important winter habitat for years. The 2002 Forest Plan designated this area Deer and Elk Winter Range and restricted winter use to minimize disturbance. Now, though, the agency is poised to change the plan and allow year-round access for Berlaimont residents. That will increase vehicle trips through the area from 0 per day in the wintertime now to an estimated 215 trips per day post-construction.
 
Deer and elk aren�t the only victims. There are rare and imperiled cutthroat trout populations in already degraded Berry Creek. The area also provides important breeding habitat for sensitive birds, like the Brewer�s Sparrow, which would be impacted. Recreationists will lose access to important trails and soft surface roads if the Berlaimont road is paved.
 
These existing values would be degraded to facilitate sprawl in the backcountry�large homes on large lots, a long way from existing infrastructure and services, resulting in disproportionate costs to the public. This kind of sprawl puts emergency responders (e.g., fire fighters) at greater risk and contributes disproportionately to degradation of the environmental values we all cherish.
 
So, please tell the Forest Service that it is not reasonable to pave sensitive habitat on public lands for access to this new subdivision. Submit comments here. Please also call the Eagle County Commissioners at 970-328-8605 and urge them to actively oppose the Forest Service�s proposal to pave this road, and to stay strong in opposition should the project come before them again in the future.
 
Peter HartABOUT PETER HART: Peter credits formative adventures in the Eagles Nest Wilderness and other wild public lands around his childhood home in Vail for sending him on a trajectory to become a public land law attorney. Peter now works as the Staff Attorney for Wilderness Workshop (WW) in Carbondale, primarily watchdogging proposals that land managers are considering on the White River National Forest and other nearby public land. For more than a decade Peter has been the lead in WW�s work to protect the Thompson Divide, but his docket also includes reviewing proposed actions like oil and gas lease sales, agency rule changes, timber projects, and recreational developments impacting public lands. He files technical comments on Environmental Impact Statements and works with outside counsel on legal actions. After graduating from high school at Vail Mountain School, Peter earned a degree in American History and Environmental Policy from Carleton College, and then a law degree and master�s of environmental law from the University of Denver. He clerked for the water rights division of the Colorado Attorney General�s Office, worked on endangered species claims at the University of Denver Environmental Law Clinic, and worked on toxic tort litigation at a Denver law firm. He enjoys riding his bike and spending time with his family, including raising two young boys with an appreciation for the great outdoors.
A-Basin logoA huge thanks to ARAPAHOE BASIN SKI AREAFor more than two decades, A-Basin staff have donated generously to their Employee Environmental Fund, of which FENW has been a steady beneficiary. Last year, more than 150 employees donated, led by A-Basin Director Alan Henceroth. Our enduring THANKS!
A-Basin slopes
Business Sponsor SPOTLIGHT on  one of our two major business sponsors. Developed by an oncologist for post-radiation skin therapy, Elite products provide soothing anti-aging benefits that are of special use in our intense, high altitude sunshine. Supplier to   Support ELITE -support FENW.
Make a donation to FENW....
 
... make a difference!

Join us in 2019 - There are many ways to take part!
Our 2018 Trail  & Campsite Projects, led by Trail Boss Kate DeMorest, took us to Slate Lakes, Piney Lake, Salt Lick Trail, Gore Creek, Deluge Lake, and more.We were greatly aided by two very special friends - Dom and Powell - LLAMAS! Join us in 2019 - learn more HERE.
Volunteer Wilderness Rangers met more than 10,000 wilderness visitors in 2018. Become a VWR in 2019 - training will be held on Saturday, June 8. Learn more here.

Join us! for our next  Planning Meeting
TUESDAY April 16, 5:30 PM,
USFS offices in Minturn & Silverthorne (video link)
Details at www.fenw.org/
Follow us
         

Hard copy newsletterThe Spring 2019 hard copy newsletter will be ready soon. Sent by mail, it will contain two dozen fun and informative articles, all of them about FENW - past, present, and future. If you didn't receive last fall's edition, then we don't have your mailing address - please send it to us at info@fenw.org
Check out other recent monthly eNewsletters 
CITY MARKET COMMUNITY REWARDS PROGRAM 
Please register your City Market Value Card, linking it to FENW, which will send rebates to FENW without compromising your earned fuel points. Please note that each card holder may only sign up for one tax exempt organization. THANKS!
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EAGLE POST 34

The newsletter of FENW logoFriends of Eagles Nest Wilderness, apprising you of important activities in and around Eagles Nest, Holy Cross, and Ptarmigan Peak Wilderness Areas. 
Before we begin - FENW announces a new advocacy campaign - Buck Berlaimont. We support a grassroots campaign led by Wilderness Workshop to stop a luxury development that threatens wildlife deep inside the White River National Forest above Edwards. Join the RALLY on Saturday, March 16! Click HERE for details.
March 2019
Dear *|FNAME|*
Gr
eetings! Our topic this month is

FENW considers changing its name - what do you think?
INTRODUCTION:
     Friends of Eagles Nest Wilderness is thinking of changing its name. Below we weigh the pros and cons, and critique several possible new names (a leading candidate is Eagle Summit Wilderness Alliance). We want your input!

     The new-name idea, long simmering, was raised at the FENW Retreat held last spring. A committee* was formed and submitted its final report last month. Ordinarily, we wouldn't print an entire committee report, but this decision is so important, and our many volunteers and other friends so devoted to Wilderness, that we want to provide you with all of the information, so that you can make an informed decision and send us your "vote." We will publish and tally these important results, and consider them carefully before a final vote is taken by the Board later in the spring. We would like your input before the end of March. Send an email to name@fenw.org (we'll print it anonymously unless you say otherwise).
     Why the fuss? Two main reasons:
1. Our name no longer accurately describes our purview. In addition to helping look after Eagles Nest Wilderness, we help with two others (Holy Cross and Ptarmigan Peak), and if the Bennet/Neguse CORE bill passes Congress, we'll add three more (marked with asterisks in the map below).
MAP


2. Our name is easily confused with other local "Friends of ..."non-profits with similar names.
Friends of ...

Below is the complete report, followed by opinions submitted by board members and other active volunteers. Send us your thoughts and opinions - we will publish them anonymously (unless you sign your name) on our website (www.fenw.org/) . Send it to name@fenw.org.

* Committee Members: Laurie Alexander, Bill Betz, Tim Drescher, Ken Harper, Cindy Muesing, Dan Seibert
COMMITTEE REPORT
8 February 2019
Friends of Eagles Nest Wilderness
Report of Committee to Change Our Name
Summary: In 2018, Board President Tim Drescher appointed a committee* to examine the advisability and feasibility of changing the name of the organization. The primary rationales for such a change were: i) our name no longer accurately describes our purview, and ii) our name is easily confused with other local non-profits with similar names.
            Below we report the results of our inquiry in six sections: background information, the rationale for considering a name change, the steps that would be necessary to implement the change, a consideration of financial and volunteer resources that would be needed, a list of potential new names, and a plan for obtaining input from our members, volunteers, and other interested people.
 
1. Background
            Eagles Nest Wilderness was created in 1976. Friends of Eagles Nest Wilderness (FENW) was established in 1994 to support the US Forest Service in caring for and maintaining Eagles Nest Wilderness, and to advocate for its protection and for other environmental causes. FENW has accepted responsibility for helping with two additional Wilderness Areas: Ptarmigan Peak (1994) and Holy Cross (~2007), which doubled the scope of our responsibility (to about 250,000 acres) - composing virtually all of the designated Wilderness in Summit and Eagle counties, all of it today in the White River National Forest.
            In 2018, FENW agreed that, if the Continental Divide Recreation, Wilderness, and Camp Hale Legacy Act (CDRWCHA) - now part of the Colorado Outdoor Recreation and Economy (CORE) Act - passes Congress, we would add to our inventory the approximately100,000 additional Wilderness acres (including 3 new Wilderness Areas) in Summit County and Eagle County.
 
2. Rationale
            Any organization's name should meet several criteria for accurate and simple descriptors. Unfortunately, our name fails, or at least falls short, for each criterion:
   A. Describe what it does: Our current name is simply not comprehensively descriptive: we are friends with two other Wilderness Areas in addition to Eagles Nest, and if the CORE Act passes Congress, we'll add three more (Williams Fork, Tenmile, and Hoosier Ridge Wildernesses). By itself, such a partial omission might not seem a particularly strong justification for changing our name; after all, Southwest Airlines flies far beyond the Southwest, but has announced no plans to change its name. That makes sense for an organization with widespread name recognition. The situation at FENW is vastly different: we rely on people; many, perhaps most, of whom don't know that our map of destinations includes many trails outside of Eagles Nest Wilderness, namely in Holy Cross and Ptarmigan Peak Wildernesses. Moreover, some of our Volunteer Wilderness Rangers (VWRs) are committed to trails in Holy Cross and Ptarmigan Peak, and they might prefer that their favorite areas are not given an evidently diminished stature in our name.
   B. Be easily recognizable: In 1994, our name stood out. Unfortunately, there are now two other "Friends of�" non-profit organizations in our backyard: Friends of the Lower Blue River (FOLBR, founded in 2000) comprises mainly property owners committed to preserving the rural qualities of the lower Blue River valley. More importantly, Friends of the Dillon Ranger District (FDRD, founded in 2007) plays a role similar to ours, but focuses mostly on trails outside Wilderness Areas in Summit County (but not Eagle County). With four full-time paid staff, FDRD has wide name recognition, and dwarfs us in terms of the size of its budget and number of its programs. It is understandable that our name is easily and frequently confused with or lumped together with theirs. Almost all of the potential new names described below drop the word "Friend" to avoid this confusion. Would this loss of "Friend" diminish the sense of support that we give the Wilderness? We don't think so; there is no doubt, for example, that The Wilderness Society is a good friend of Wilderness even though their name does not explicitly say so.
   C. Have a simple acronym: FENW is somewhat ambiguous as an acronym. Does one say the letters - F-E-N-W - or call it "fen -w"? It is not a particularly major concern, but with the growth of non-profit environmental groups in Colorado, the air is thick with acronyms (e.g., IPWA, PWV, SUWA, FOV, NWSA, FOMELC, SJMA, RMEF), and simple-to-pronounce names are the easiest to remember. Some of the potential new names discussed below fill this criterion better than our current one does.
            While these considerations make a good case for exploring the possibility of a new name, it is important to consider any negative consequences of changing our name. The main such consequence would be loss of name recognition, particularly in Summit County. This is valid concern; its mitigation would require a concerted effort of public education via the usual targeted communications - newspapers, newsletters, and posters. Such a campaign, however, need not be focused solely on the new name, because 2019 is the 25th anniversary of our founding, and celebrating this birthday in combination with announcing our new name (and perhaps new logo) could become an effective and recognized campaign. Finally, it is worth noting that we have little name recognition in Eagle County, and so the negative impact of a name change there would be minimal.
          A second concern is inertia: leave well-enough alone! The past several years have witnessed a spate of calls for renaming a variety of entities, mostly named after men whose careers comprised both good and bad deeds. Determining the threshold at which the bad should overshadow the good and warrant renaming is a tedious, usually contentious, zero-sum process, and has led some people to make a blanket decision that we should always leave well-enough alone. We can only point out that our situation is different: there is no push (nobody acted badly), just a pull, as described above.
 
logos            Have other non-profits changed their name? We identified the Colorado History Museum, which became History Colorado when their new building opened in Denver. We surmise that they wanted to drop the word "museum" from their name because they curate contemporary as well as historical shows. The Denver Natural History Museum changed its name to the Denver Museum of Nature & Science. We guess that the name change was driven in part by a desire to sound more contemporary and to be the Science Museum in Denver.
 
3. Implementation
            Effecting the name change efficiently and expeditiously would require the concerted work by a committee working on several fronts simultaneously on both one-time and continuing chores.
   A. One-time chores
      i. Legal and other administrative considerations:
            FENW is a 501(c)3 tax-exempt organization, and it is critical that we retain that designation.
            Acronym: Confirm that any acronym of the new name is not already taken.
            DBA designation: The most commonly used, and easiest way to make the name change official would be to use a �DBA� (Doing Business As) designation. Example being: Friends of Eagles Nest Wilderness, DBA (insert new name). The only reason why the FENW name would continue to be used at that point would be for legal purposes only. From a marketing and daily usage standpoint �Friends of Eagles Nest Wilderness� would cease to exist.
            Bylaws: The bylaws would need to be updated with the new name
            Articles of Amendment: The Secretary of State would need to be informed of the name change and we would need to file an �Articles of Amendment� to the Articles of Incorporation
            IRS: We would need to notify the IRS of the name change on our next 990 or 990-EZ form
            DUNS: USFS DUNS number from Dunn and Bradstreet for our cost share agreement [and also SAM?]
      ii. Notifications needed to be made: The Summit Foundation (hosts FENW endowment), US Forest Service (Dillon Ranger District, Holy Cross Ranger District), Colorado Gives (by September), partnering organizations (FDRD, VOC, Rocky Mountain Youth Corps, National Wilderness Stewardship Alliance, PWV, FOV, IPWA, FOLBR), and local government agencies (Eagle and Summit County Commissioners).
     iii. Changes to marketing collateral
            Website: The new Domain would have to be created, and the suffix (.org, .net, etc) selected. The new email address would need to be established. The website itself would of course have to be changed to present the new name. Some suffixes are already taken, and it might be necessary to use a different name. For example, the URL for Indian Peaks Wilderness Alliance - IPWA - is www.indianpeakswilderness.org.
            Social Media: Our facebook and Instagram accounts would have to be changed from FENW to the new name       
            Trailhead signs (n= about 20) would have to be updated
            Flyers, brochures, business cards, and banners would need to be reprinted with the new name
            The VWR Training Manual would need to be updated
 
   B. Sustained efforts: In addition to the one-time activities described above, we would need to mount a sustained campaign over a period of months to inform the public of the new name. This would include announcements and articles in newspapers, our own publications, social media posts, and hard copy posters in public buildings. As noted above, such a campaign has the advantage that it could be combined with our 25th anniversary celebration.
 
            It would be important to create an Implementation Committee, with an identified Chair, to insure a smooth and successful implementation process.

   4. Resources
            Do we have the resources to accomplish the name change, without compromising the other projects in which we engage, such as Volunteer Wilderness Rangers, Trail Maintenance trips, and Invasive plant mitigation? From a general overview, it seems that the process would not be unduly taxing to financial resources, but will require considerable extra efforts from volunteers, some of whom are already heavily invested in other activities.
   A. Finances
            FENW is an all-volunteer organization operating with limited funds, relying on donations from interested members of the public, and conscious of costs. At present (February 2019), the balance in the current account is about $13,000. After deducting recurring annual costs, about $10,000 will remain. From this, we donate funds to the Forest Service (e.g., llama rental); these costs have not yet been determined for 2019 and thus the funds available for implementation of the name change are difficult to estimate at present with much certainty.
            The majority of Implementation tasks fortunately would not require much money. The legal requirements, notifications of organizations, and most publicity tasks would need little financing. The new trailhead signs, and printing of flyers, business cards, and banners would require several hundred dollars. Paid notices in local newspapers would also require hundreds of dollars. Taken altogether, it seems reasonable to estimate that the total cost would be less than $2,000, which seems not an onerous amount, given our current state of finances.
   B. Identifying and recruiting volunteers to carry out the Implementation would be a greater challenge than financing the project. There is quite a large collection of chores, and while none of them in isolation is daunting, the totality would require considerable organization and time, for example to create and submit materials to government agencies, to create and post signage at trailheads, to update the website with a new domain name, to design and have printed new hard copy materials, and to mount a campaign to alert the public to the change. Currently FENW has only a small number of people who help with such �backroom� services (planning, outreach, marketing, legal, etc.). While increasing the number of volunteers active in these endeavors is one of our highest priorities, in 2019 we likely would have to rely mostly, if not entirely, on the current roster. It seems reasonable to conclude that soliciting and gaining the full agreement of the current leadership in participating in the Implementation is a prerequisite.
 
   5. Potential new names
            A considerable list of names has been proposed, including Eagle Summit Wilderness Alliance (ESWA); Summit Eagle Wilderness Advocates (SEWA); Vail Pass Wilderness Advocates (VPWA); Wilderness Advocates of Vail Summit (WAVS); Vail Summit Wilderness Advocates (VSWA); Colorado Wilderness Volunteers (CWV); Wilderness Eagle Summit Team Advocates (WESTA); Wilderness Eagle Summit Alliance (WESA); Vail Summit Wilderness Stewards (VSWS); Wilderness Friends of Summit and Eagle Counties. [See below for critiques of these names]
 
   6. Input from members, volunteers, and the public: As an all-volunteer organization, we need to be certain that we listen carefully to our constituency. Before the Board takes its final vote on whether to change our name, we need to solicit, collect, and publish input from others, especially our volunteers, past and present. In particular, there are a number of people with many years of deep experience with Friends of Eagles Nest Wilderness; their opinions matter to us deeply. After the Board accepts the final Committee Report, it should be publicized widely, with invitations to submit opinions, and a mechanism should be created to publish those opinions. In particular, key stakeholders should be contacted individually for their input. Finally, once the new Advisory Board is established in April, their collective input should be obtained. As these data are collected, the Board members can draw upon them to make a final decision about the name change.
We would love to get your opinion. Send it to name@fenw.org ]

 
INDIVIDUAL CRITIQUES OF POSSIBLE NEW NAMES
Send us your thoughts at name@fenw.org (published anonymously unless you sign your name)

Eagle Summit Wilderness Alliance
.
1. It's a nice, pronounceable acronym. ESWA is geographically accurate - we service virtually all of the Wilderness Areas in Summit and Eagle counties, and virtually none anywhere else. I like the two words - eagle and summit - because they evoke visions of wilderness (better, for example, than Pitkin&Gunnison, or Giplin&Grand). The word Eagle keeps a connection to our former name (for a different reason). We are two almost isolated groups, separated by Vail Pass, but bound into this alliance
     I do not favor any name with the word "Vail" in it. Vail evokes different things to different people - a highway engineer, a pass, a town, a huge conglomerate of private ski areas that cater to people with a lot of money - none of these particularly evokes visions of a pristine wilderness that nurtures opportunities for solitude. Moreover, A-Basin, our biggest donor (by far) for more than 20 years recently severed its ties with Vail.
     The other candidates that require pronouncing four or five letters are not very mellifluous - not like ESWA. ESWA is easy to remember, and will stand out in our increasingly acronymophonic world.
     SEWA (Summit Eagle Wilderness Alliance) sounds like a New Englander's "sewer" and is too close to SUWA (Southern Utah Wilderness Alliance).
     I do not favor keeping the word "Friend" in our name, as we are trying to get away from the confusion we face now with FOLBR and FDRD. Steamboat Springs also has an organization called Friends of Wilderness.

2. I completely agree with [these] comments�.

3. ESWA is also my preference and I agree with all the reasons � listed. In addition, � I think the word Alliance is a more accurate description and more inclusive of our mission than �Advocates� or �Stewards.�

4/ I support ESWA

5. I'm still not all that happy about changing the name after having gotten used to it for 10+ years. However if we have to change it, ESWA is a good alternative

6. ... you bring up some very excellent points here. After reading this, I would strongly favor ESWA as well

Vail Summit Wilderness Stewards
7. (VSWS): This is actually my favorite � despite what people say, I think having Vail in the name will pull interest from the Vail valley and that is very important to our future growth � member wise and finance wise.  Also I can envision a great logo where the V�s and W�s are mountains and the S�s are ski tracks coming down the mountains.  
   I don�t think any name with Advocates works, we are more stewards or an alliance.
Eagle Summit Wilderness Alliance (ESWA): This one is ok but awkward.  I like Summit Eagle Wilderness Alliance better (SEWA). It is pronounceable and doesn�t really get confused with �sewer� in my mind.
   Wilderness Advocates of Vail Summit (WAVS) This might be ok if it was Wilderness Associate of Vail, Eagle and Summit.  I think the nautical nature of the acronym is not good though.
   Vail Summit Wilderness Advocates (VSWA) I like this if you replace Advocates with Association (but Stewards below is better). Again it could be Vail{Eagle}Summit
   Colorado Wilderness Volunteers (CWV) Too big
   Wilderness Eagle Summit Team Advocates (WESTA) or Wilderness Eagle Summit Alliance (WESA):  I don�t think either of these read like good English.  Maybe works if you go with       Wilderness Alliance of Eagle and Summit Counties or something like that.
   Wilderness Friends of Summit and Eagle Counties: What I particularly like about it is we could create one of two handles (not acronyms) that are easy to remember (and the URLs are open): WilderFriends.org (this wasn't my original, inspired by Wilderbash) or 
WildFriends.org (my original) �. Something that could become Wilder<something>.org is my real goal.

A-Basin logoA huge thanks to ARAPAHOE BASIN SKI AREAFor more than two decades, A-Basin staff have donated generously to their Employee Environmental Fund, of which FENW has been a steady beneficiary. Last year, more than 150 employees donated, led by A-Basin Director Alan Henceroth. Our enduring THANKS!
A-Basin slopes
TARGET SILVERTHORNE made a GENEROUS DONATION to FENW to help relieve the pain that the government shutdown caused to Forest Service WIlderness Rangers. Target Silverthorne has a special relationship with the Forest Service - when customers (aka guests) enter the store, they can look up to see EAGLES NEST WILDERNESS, and when they leave, they can look up to see PTARMIGAN PEAK WILDERNESS. In addition, the store is right across the Blue River Parkway from the Dillon Ranger District offices. THANKS TARGET for helping protect Wilderness!Target Silverthorne
Business Sponsor SPOTLIGHT on  one of our two major business sponsors. Developed by an oncologist for post-radiation skin therapy, Elite products provide soothing anti-aging benefits that are of special use in our intense, high altitude sunshine. Supplier to   Support ELITE -support FENW.
Make a donation to FENW....
 
... make a difference!

Join us in 2019 - There are many ways to take part!
Our 2018 Trail  & Campsite Projects, led by Trail Boss Kate DeMorest, took us to Slate Lakes, Piney Lake, Salt Lick Trail, Gore Creek, Deluge Lake, and more.We were greatly aided by two very special friends - Dom and Powell - LLAMAS! Join us in 2019 - learn more HERE.
Volunteer Wilderness Rangers met more than 10,000 wilderness visitors in 2018. Become a VWR in 2019 - training will be held on Saturday, June 8. Learn more here.

Join us! for our next  Planning Meeting
THURSDAY, March 14, 5:30 PM,
USFS offices in Minturn & Silverthorne (video link)
Details at www.fenw.org/
Follow us
         

Hard copy newsletterOur current hard copy newsletter is available. Sent by mail, it contains two dozen fun and informative articles, all of them about FENW - past, present, and future. If you haven't received your copy, then we don't have your mailing address - please send it to us at info@fenw.org
Recent monthly eNewsletters 
CITY MARKET COMMUNITY REWARDS PROGRAM 
Please register your City Market Value Card, linking it to FENW, which will send rebates to FENW without compromising your earned fuel points. Please note that each card holder may only sign up for one tax exempt organization. THANKS!
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EAGLE POST 33

The newsletter of FENW logoFriends of Eagles Nest Wilderness, apprising you of important activities in and around Eagles Nest, Holy Cross, and Ptarmigan Peak Wilderness Areas. 
February 2019
Dear *|FNAME|*
Gr
eetings! Our topic this month is

The Good, the Bad, and the Pretty Ugly
by Jim Alexander
 INTRODUCTION
In 2019, FENW will be revitalizing its program to preserve the health of the wilderness ecosystems. As part of the program, we have applied for two grants to bring professionals in to: 1) treat and control several noxious weed infestations, and 2) survey and map plant life in the Wilderness. To be successful in these projects, we need volunteers - all you amateur botanists and flower lovers - to help survey and record plant life as you hike. If you'd like to learn more about the surveys contact contact Jim Alexander.

The Good, The Bad, and the�Pretty� but Ugly

By Jim Alexander
 
Jim AlexanderIn 1964, the Wilderness Act created boundaries that set aside certain primeval lands to preserve their natural conditions, with minimal impact by man. These laws cordoned off the dozens of beautiful areas across Summit County, Colorado and the entire United States. The wilderness boundaries are effective at controlling the human impact upon the wilderness � because of vigilant efforts of the USFS and groups like FENW. Unfortunately, biology doesn�t respect Wilderness boundaries and non-native plants cross freely into the fragile wilderness ecosystems and cause trouble. The invasive weeds may completely change the lands.
On any mid-summer stroll in Eagles Nest, Ptarmigan Peak, or Holy Cross Wilderness you�ll come across a magnificent array of flowers and plants: Lupin, Fireweed, Indian Paint Brush. And who isn�t thrilled to find a section of Colorado Blue Columbine swaying in an aspen grove? On that same stroll, you might see some others � pretty white Oxeye Daisy, striking red-pink Musk Thistle, delicate yellow Dalmatian Toadflax. Those last few, however pretty they may be, are ruining the wilderness ecosystems. They are invasive species that out-compete the native flora [and fauna] creating an ecological barren that little plant life can survive within. 

KudzuInvasive species are not just in the wilderness areas; you can find them almost anywhere because they are mostly spread by people.  Some are decorative [garden] plants imported from distant lands for gardens.  Some have been used to address agricultural problems. Kudzu is a good example. Kudzu is an effective ground cover and was brought from Japan and planted in Georgia for erosion control. And it was effective, so effective it spread everywhere across the American South, shading and killing many stands of trees.Another problem weed, found throughout the west and Colorado, is Cheatgrass. It is a delicate grass that bends gracefully to reveal yellow or purplish seed heads � you�ll see it all along Route 9 in Summit County. Cheatgrass has ruined many farms in the mid-west.  It germinates and blooms much earlier than native or agricultural grasses, so it gradually takes over. [In South Dakota it has taken over entire farmlands.]  Some farmlands are so infested, they are completely useless. The land can�t even be sold as banks won�t loan money to buy the infested lands, and they are just abandoned.

Downy broom - cheatgrassCheatgrass has invaded at least one Wilderness Area � Joshua Tree Wilderness. Here the grass grows among the trees, without any immediately-apparent impact on the area.  But in the event of a wildfire, Cheatgrass causes a terrible problem: normally, fires in that region don�t burn hot enough to kill the trees, but cheatgrass makes the fires hotter, and trees die. To make matters worse, after the fire cheatgrass grows back first, further squeezing out more of the native plants.So far, we don�t think there is cheatgrass in our wilderness areas (Eagles Nest, Holy Cross, and Ptarmigan Peak). Though plant ecologists I�ve talked with at the Denver Botanic Gardens worry that it is just a matter of time before it works its way in. If the ground is disturbed in some way � trails being cut, hikers scuffing up the ground, horse prints, camping areas, or dogs digging in the dirt.  Those disturbances are what provide the gap, the invitation for a noxious species to grow and often those hikers or animals unknowingly bring in the seeds as well,
Summit County and Eagle County lands are replete with noxious weeds; there are more than 30 types tracked by the various government agencies. (see a list below). You�ve certainly seen the major ones: Oxeye Daisey, False Chamomile, Musk Thistle, Bull and Canada thistle. They may even seem like a beautiful addition to the forest.  A common joke is if you see an ugly thistle, it�s a native thistle (not quite true, but close)! All these plants take hold in private lands and their seeds make their way to federal lands and on into the wilderness. There are hundreds of infestations now, and once an infestation takes hold, it takes years of diligent effort to remove.
Noxious weeds have a variety of bad impacts upon wilderness. Generally they reduce the food supply for the forest�s inhabitants. Some invasive plants bear spines and thorns that keep animals away.  Some produce nasty chemicals that irritate the animal�s mouth or skin. Others are inedible, distasteful, or even toxic to many native creatures, including insects and animals.  When these weed infestations spread and spread, the native food supply shrinks and shrinks.
Even more than the effect on the wildlife, the weeds affect the very land. Some examples:
  • Musk Thistle and Bull Thistle create monocultures that aggressively take over burned areas.
  • Chamomile�s odor is so unpleasant, animals won�t even graze nearby.
  • Orange Hawkweed produces a chemical that inhibits pollination and germination of seeds of native plants
  • Dames Rocket changes the soil, so some tree species are unable to grow (by suppressing mycorrhizae (fungi that grow symbiotically in intimate association with plant roots)
  • Oxeye daisy hosts tiny worms that invade and eat the roots of other plants.

Noxious weed infestations are a problem across the Eagles Nest, Ptarmigan Peak, and Holy Cross Wilderness areas � there are hundreds, if not thousands of infested areas. A good example is the Slate Creek Trail in the Eagles Nest Wilderness. As you can see from the map below, more than sixty infestations dot that valley. For many years FENW has fought to contain and fight back those infestations. We will treat that area again in 2019, and do so annually, until we eliminate the weeds.

Slate Creek weeds
It is critical that we treat such wilderness infestations, especially new ones. Once a noxious weed infestation takes hold, it is nearly impossible to kill. Noxious weeds drop seeds � sometimes thousands or millions � and create a seed bank. Even if you kill this year�s weeds, new weeds will pop up from the seed bank the very next year or later - sometimes decades later!

Beyond controlling existing infestations, we need to map new infestations and kill them before they gain a foothold in the wilderness. In 2019, FENW is launching a program to survey the wilderness ecosystems. The resulting data will provide a picture of the impact of weeds on our ecosystem, and guide the development of refined techniques for weed management.

Our survey work will depend on reports from hikers who love plants. For those budding botanists, we plan several educational events in 2019. The first is a private tour of the Denver Botanic Gardens on Sunday, April 28 at 2:00 PM, focusing on plant species of Summit and Eagle Counties.  Join us for this exciting event - contact Jim Alexander for more information. 


9 Bad Weeds in our wilderness areas �9 bad weeds


The rest of the invaders�The U.S. Forest Service tracks 37 invasive species in Eagle and Summit Counties. Check out the Summit County Web site:  http://www.co.summit.co.us/993/Summit-County-Noxious-Weeds.

Business Sponsor SPOTLIGHT on  one of our two major business sponsors. Developed by an oncologist for post-radiation skin therapy, Elite products provide soothing anti-aging benefits that are of special use in our intense, high altitude sunshine. Supplier to   Support ELITE -support FENW.
Make a donation to FENW....
 
... make a difference!

Join us in 2019 - There are many ways to take part!
Our 2018 Trail  & Campsite Projects, led by Trail Boss Kate DeMorest, took us to Slate Lakes, Piney Lake, Salt Lick Trail, Gore Creek, Deluge Lake, and more.We were greatly aided by two very special friends - Dom and Powell - LLAMAS! Join us in 2019 - learn more HERE.
Volunteer Wilderness Rangers met more than 10,000 wilderness visitors in 2018. Become a VWR in 2019 - training will be held on Saturday, June 8. Learn more here.

Join us! for our next  Planning Meeting
THURSDAY, February 14, 5:30 PM,
If SHUTDOWN: Copper Mountain Community Center (MAP)
IF NO SHUTDOWN: USFS offices in Minturn & Silverthorne (video link)
Details at www.fenw.org/
Follow us
         

Hard copy newsletterOur Fall 2018 hard copy newsletter is available. It contains two dozen fun and informative articles, all of them about FENW - past, present, and future. If you haven't received your copy, then we don't have your mailing address - please send it to us at info@fenw.org
Recent monthly eNewsletters 
CITY MARKET COMMUNITY REWARDS PROGRAM 
Please register your City Market Value Card, linking it to FENW, which will send rebates to FENW without compromising your earned fuel points. Please note that each card holder may only sign up for one tax exempt organization. THANKS!
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EAGLE POST 32

The newsletter of FENW logoFriends of Eagles Nest Wilderness, apprising you of important activities in and around Eagles Nest, Holy Cross, and Ptarmigan Peak Wilderness Areas. 
January 2019
Dear *|FNAME|*
Gr
eetings! Our topic this month is

Leadership turnover at FENW
Bill Betz is President in 2019, while TIm Drescher (President in 2018) becomes Past-President
  INTRODUCTION
Nearly two years ago, the FENW Board of Directors voted to change the term of the FENW president to just one year. Some expressed concern that one year was too short, that leaders need more time to make their mark.The counter argument - that a three year series of President-elect --> President --> Past President would provide the needed continuity - prevailed as the Board voted unanimously in favor of the change. The process was set in motion a year ago, when Tim Drescher succeeded co-founder and longtime President Currie Craven. Bill Betz was named President-Elect.

Now the process has racheted a notch as Bill replaces Tim for 2019.

Below, read their reports - Bill's hopes for 2019, and Tim's review of accomplishments in 2018.

Bill BetzBILL BETZ
FENW President 2019

I joined FENW about five years ago as I neared retirement. Raw guilt provided the push: having frequented the Gores for decades, saying my silent thanks as I cruised along trails cleared of deadfalls and enjoyed lakeside campsites free of fire rings, I decided it was payback time. What I didn�t realize at the time was that there existed an even stronger pull: the great joy that came from the fellowship of new friends of all ages who share a passion for wilderness, its protection and preservation. Today, a little residual guilt still persists, reflecting my net gain - no matter how hard I try, I keep receiving more than I've given back. My gratitude runs deep. 
 
I've worked on several different projects and I feel that I understand the workings of FENW in considerable detail. I am an experienced Volunteer Wilderness Ranger, and I've been on a number of trail maintenance & campsite rehab trips. I rejuvenated our website and rebooted our biannual hard copy newsletter, and I'm the editor of our monthly eNewsletter (you are reading number 32). I led successful efforts to create an archive, update our bylaws, and establish our Endowment Fund. I also screwed up, trying in my enthusiasm to organize an event that we were just too small to undertake effectively. The effort was summed up succinctly by a board member and friend who said simply, "We don't do Mardi Gras."
 
He was correct.                                                                                      
 
As we begin 2019, our signature boots-on-the-ground programs are doing well. It�s our boots-OFF-the-ground projects that present a challenge � planning and staffing events (including a celebration of our 25th year), keeping track of stuff, nurturing our endowment, creating an Advisory Board. It's not that we want to put on a Mardi Gras, but we do want to expand our committee structure. Remember the pull: if you join us, you�ll get back more than you invest, I promise. Begin by attending a monthly planning meeting (second Thursday, 5:30 PM). We'll feed you, and you'll see in action our mantra of "have fun, no drama." You might even decide to join the happy melee.
 
Of course, we won't be neglecting work in the forest. We're reviewing our Volunteer Wilderness Ranger program (led by Mike Mayrer and Ken Harper); last summer more than 50 rangers contacted more than 10,000 hikers. That's a lot, but it's less than 10% of the total. We also will consider starting a winter VWR program. Our Trail Maintenance program (led by Trail Boss Kate DeMorest) augments the hard work by Forest Service and Rocky Mountain Youth Corps rangers. And our renewed Noxious Weed program (led by Jim Alexander) is set to launch in 2019. 

Our work has never been more important. The Forest Service, that wonderful agency with an awesomely broad charge, a ginormous amount of acreage to look after, and a pitifully scanty federal budget (and none as I write: our FS advisors Cindy Ebbert (Dillon RD) and Mike Beach (Eagle/Holy Cross RD) are furloughed, due to the government shutdown) needs us more than ever.

ABOUT BILL BETZ
Joan, Jen, Emmy, Bill - 1979Bill and his wife Joan moved to Colorado in 1971, joining the faculty at CU Medical School as basic scientists (neuroscience and molecular biology, respectively). Today they hold emeritus status, and still do a little teaching.
In 1973 they bought a rustic - no, primitive - log cabin on Pebble Creek on the east side of the Gore Range. Little did they guess that the cabin would so shape their lives - for example, it was the subject of college and medical school essays by their two daughters. It remains a focus of their lives, and they delight in seeing their four grandchildren discover the joys of Nature like their children did. As FENW begins its second quarter-century of service, Joan and Bill begin their third quarter-century of marriage.
TIM DRESCHER 
FENW President 2018


It has been an honor to serve as FENW President over the past year. Twenty-Eighteen served as the first year in more than two decades since our organization has had a new President. Currie Craven passed the torch to me just over a year ago, and I�ve enjoyed leading FENW into year twenty-five. That�s right! - 2019 marks Friends of Eagles Nest Wilderness�s 25th Anniversary. We plan to commemorate this year in a few different ways, so keep your eyes and ears out for the details.
There have been many accomplishments in the past year; I�ve decided to list some of the biggies:
�            New Board Members: Jim Alexander, Laurie Alexander & Mike Browning. The board continues to revisit and review our bylaws in order to update and refresh guiding policies.
�            Received a grant from the Summit Foundation that went towards the cost of hiring Rocky Mountain Youth Corps to clear hundreds of deadfall from the Gore Range trail in Summit County
�            FENW paid for the rental of two Llamas that the USFS in Minturn was able to use on work trips into designated Wilderness throughout this past summer. The feedback that we received for covering this cost to the Forest Service was tremendous, and we plan to do the same for 2019.
�            Eight different FENW-sponsored summer work projects completed, including two overnight trips with the llamas
�            Cross-cut saw sharpening cost covered and completed for Volunteer Wilderness Rangers and the USFS
�            March FENW Board and Leadership team retreat & workshop which resulted in a number of streamlining processes and action items for improvement
�            Production of two hardcopy newsletters that were mailed out to about 250 core supporters and donors.
�            Revitalization of the FENW noxious weed program
�            Creation of the FENW Endowment Fund through the Summit Foundation, and a beginning gift of 20K to help establish it. There are now different options of donating to FENW: traditional (to the general operating budget), bequest & endowment.
�            The number of active Volunteer Wilderness Rangers is at an all-time high, and we contacted over 10,000 Wilderness visitors last summer
�            Colorado Gives contributions totaling $2400
�            Our monthly email newsletter now reaches over 900 individual mail boxes
�            We held a fun Volunteer Wilderness Ranger �Thank you� party at the Vail Pass huts to look back at our accomplishments over the past summer, and to recognize our terrific volunteers
Business Sponsor SPOTLIGHT on  one of our two major business sponsors. Developed by an oncologist for post-radiation skin therapy, Elite products provide soothing anti-aging benefits that are of special use in our intense, high altitude sunshine. Supplier to   Support ELITE -support FENW.
Make a donation to FENW....
 
... make a difference!

Join us in 2019 - There are many ways to take part!
Our 2018 Trail  & Campsite Projects, led by Trail Boss Kate DeMorest, took us to Slate Lakes, Piney Lake, Salt Lick Trail, Gore Creek, Deluge Lake, and more.We were greatly aided by two very special friends - Dom and Powell - LLAMAS! Join us in 2019 - learn more HERE.
Volunteer Wilderness Rangers met more than 10,000 wilderness visitors in 2018. Become a VWR in 2019 - training will be held on Saturday, June 8. Learn more here.

Join us! for our next  Planning Meeting
THURSDAY, January 10, 5:30 PM,
Copper Mountain Chapel (MAP) and Minturn
Details at www.fenw.org/
Follow us
         

Hard copy newsletterOur Fall 2018 hard copy newsletter is available. It contains two dozen fun and informative articles, all of them about FENW - past, present, and future. If you haven't received your copy, then we don't have your mailing address - please send it to us at info@fenw.org
Recent monthly eNewsletters 
CITY MARKET COMMUNITY REWARDS PROGRAM 
Please register your City Market Value Card, linking it to FENW, which will send rebates to FENW without compromising your earned fuel points. Please note that each card holder may only sign up for one tax exempt organization. THANKS!
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EAGLE POST 31

The newsletter of FENW logoFriends of Eagles Nest Wilderness, apprising you of important activities in and around Eagles Nest, Holy Cross, and Ptarmigan Peak Wilderness Areas. 
December 2018 
Dear *|FNAME|*
Gr
eetings! Our topic this month is

Saving the Lower Blue RIver Valley
John Fielderby John Fielder
DonateBEFORE WE BEGIN...
COLORADO GIVES DAY is this Tuesday. As an all-volunteer organization we target every dollar in our budget directly to protecting three Wilderness Areas in Summit and Eagle counties, with programs like Volunteer Wilderness Rangers and Trail Maintenance, and Forest Health projects. FENW is critically dependent upon the generosity of others. If you can support these efforts click HERE to donate to FENW. Any amount works. $35 buys a shirt for a Volunteer Wilderness Ranger shirt. $100 supports a Rocky Mountain Youth Corps crew for an afternoon. A larger contribution might build a bridge on a lovely trail. Consider donating to our ENDOWMENT FUND, which will make your gift give year after year.

About FENW




 
 

IN ADDITION... Look for your FENW Fall Newsletter! It was mailed out a week ago. If you haven't received one, WE DON'T HAVE YOUR MAILING ADDRESS. Send it to us at info@fenw.org and we'll send you the newsletter - it's chock full of trip reports and information about us.
                                 SAVING THE LOWER BLUE RIVER VALLEY
INTRODUCTION

QuarryAn open pit mine is proposed for the lower Blue RIver Valley, in the last stretch that retains the historic purity of meadowed and pastured ranchlands, nestled betweem Eagles Nest and Ptarmigan Peak Wilderness Areas. The proposal arrives like a gut punch to those who cherish the place, because they thought they had gained a respite from the relentless (some say voracious) spread of gravel quarries from farther upstream.
 
Several years ago, the Summit Sky development on Maryland Creek, originally approved for 80 homesites, suddenly was allowed to triple in size to 240, and was annexed by the town of Silverthorne. Preservationists appealed, but lost. There was, however, a consolation: developer Tom Everist put a deed restriction on the downstream (northern) part of his property, which blocks additional annexations by Silverthorne (town annexations must border existing town boundaries). A sigh of relief arose from farther downstream.
 
Alas, the consolation didn't prevent this new application for an open pit gravel quarry in the pastoral valley below.
 
John Fielder, our Photographer Laureate of Colorado and champion of environmental causes, has founded a grass roots effort to block the creation of the quarry. Below, John pleads his case in a personal essay. Below that (and at the FENW website) is his public call to action.
[photos by John Fielder]
John Fielder

To my Friends of Eagles Nest Wilderness
By John Fielder
Photographer

I moved to Summit County in 2007. I had always known that when my children flew the coop, I would head for the hills�permanently. I found land high in the Acorn Creek drainage of the Williams Fork Mountains 10 miles north of Silverthorne. I built a home that overlooks the Lower Blue River Valley, and I can see the entire Gore Range to the west. As a nature photographer, I know a good thing when I see it�it�s my job!
 
Over the past 40 years I have photographed just about the entire Eagles Nest Wilderness, including all of its alpine and subalpine lakes. The Gore Range and the Needle Mountains in the Weminuche Wilderness are my two favorite ranges in Colorado. They are both rugged, remote, and partly untrailed, my definition of paradise.

 
The Lower Blue River Valley is not only one of Colorado�s most scenic riverine valleys, it�s one of its most bucolic. In between the two mountain ranges lie working cattle ranches, most of which are protected forever from development by conservation easements, including the 1,123-acre Knorr Ranch, eased in September. In addition, there are more than 8,000 acres of Summit County Open Space open to the public.
 
ElkThe valley, itself, is a collection of superlatives. The second largest purple lupine wildflower meadow that I have photographed in Colorado lies along a certain public road. Not far away bloom the stalks of green gentian (monument plant) in a meadow that is the largest I know of in Colorado. Our aspens are the highlight of any Summit County autumn, and Lower Cataract Lake provides my favorite two-mile hike around a subalpine lake. And how about those magnificent elk and mule deer herds that hang with us down low in spring and fall?
 
quarry siteAll of these values are now threatened by a proposed new gravel mine at the confluence of Slate Creek and the Blue River along the west side of Highway 9 immediately south of Ute Pass Road. As I write this, I look down on this soon to be ravaged 80-acre property, the river itself, and the Gore Range behind it all. If the mine is approved, views from Ute Pass and other high places will be destroyed, 230 gravel trucks a day on the highway will send their tire noise through home windows up and down Highway 9, dust will cloud the valley, those elk and deer will disappear to friendlier places, and I can only imagine the adverse impacts on the already dwindling fresh waters of the Blue River.
 
I have created a non-profit organization, Lower Blue Residents United, to lead the fight to defeat the mine. Let there be no doubt, we will stop it, but we must do our diligence. Please email me and I will add you to our list of supporters, and apprise you of developments. We must raise $100,000 immediately to hire the expert witnesses and attorney to present our case at the first Summit County review, which could be as early as February. Consider how badly you do not wish to have gravel mining in the Lower Blue River Valley. Send your generous checks now to:
 
Lower Blue Residents United
c/o John Fielder
POB 26890
Silverthorne CO 80497
 
Sincerely,
 
John Fielder
Acorn Creek
john@johnfielder.com


ABOUT JOHN FIELDER
With more than forty coffee table photography books published - including Colorado's all-time best-selling book (Colorado 1870-2000) - John Fielder knows our mountains with an intimacy borne of countless backcountry trips. Among his many honors, he is the recipient of the Sierra Club�s Ansel Adams Award, the Aldo Leopold Foundation�s Achievement Award (first time given to an individual), and most recently (2017) an Honorary Degree in Sustainability Studies from Colorado Mountain College.
 
Blue River ValleyThose backcountry photography expeditions doubled as scouting trips for John as he sought a spot to build a mountain home of his own. His ultimate choice was smack in the middle of FENW country - next to Ptarmigan Peak Wilderness, looking west across the Blue River valley into the heart of Eagles Nest Wilderness. It is easy to understand his passionate desire to protect the last slender thread of unsullied river valley that connects those two magnificent Wilderness Areas, to preserve the pastoral ranchlands and bucolic public wildlands.
 
Business Sponsor SPOTLIGHT on  one of our two major business sponsors. Developed by an oncologist for post-radiation skin therapy, Elite products provide soothing anti-aging benefits that are of special use in our intense, high altitude sunshine. Supplier to   Support ELITE -support FENW.
Make a donation to FENW....
 
... make a difference!

Join us in 2019 - There are many ways to take part!
Our 2018 Trail  & Campsite Projects, led by Trail Boss Kate Demorest, took us to Slate Lakes, Piney Lake, Salt Lick Trail, Gore Creek, Deluge Lake, and more.We were greatly aided by two very special friends - Dom and Powell - LLAMAS! Join us in 2019 - learn more HERE.
Volunteer Wilderness Rangers met more than 10,000 wilderness visitors in 2018. Become a VWR in 2019 - training will be held on a Saturday in early June. Learn more here.

Join us! for our next  Planning Meeting
THURSDAY, December 13, 5:30 PM,
USFS Offices (video link) Silverthorne (MAP) and Minturn
Details at www.fenw.org/
Follow us
         

Hard copy newsletterOur hard copy newsletter is available. It contains two dozen fun and informative articles, all of them about FENW - past, present, and future. If you haven't received your copy, then we don't have your mailing address - please send it to us at info@fenw.org
Recent monthly eNewsletters 
CITY MARKET COMMUNITY REWARDS PROGRAM 
Please register your City Market Value Card, linking it to FENW, which will send rebates to FENW without compromising your earned fuel points. Please note that each card holder may only sign up for one tax exempt organization. THANKS!
PUBLIC LETTER FROM JOHN FIELDER
                     
   Stop gravel mining in the Lower Blue River Valley
November 18, 2018
 
Hello Neighbors of the Lower Blue River Valley:
 
On October 15, our neighbor Julie Hillyard sold her 80-acre lower Blue River ranch to Peak Materials (formerly LG Everest), operators of the Maryland Creek gravel/aggregate mine north of Silverthorne. Her ranch lies along the west side of Highway 9 near the confluence of Slate Creek and the Blue River. Peak Materials is a subsidiary of
Kilgore Companies, which in turn is a subsidiary of Summit Materials, a national company based in Denver that specializes in mining aggregates and making concrete. (http://summit-materials.com/companies/kilgore-companies)
 
Peak Materials apparently has determined that only limited inventory of aggregate remains at the Maryland Creek site necessitating the company to seek new gravel mining locations. We understand that Peak is planning to mine aggregate at the Hillyard site and truck it to Maryland Creek for processing. This proposal would fundamentally change the character of the Lower Blue River valley and would require up to 230 truck trips per day (full load south, empty load north).
 
Summit County Planning Dept. requires that a Conditional Use Permit (CUP) be acquired for such operations. The application would be evaluated based upon the Summit County Land Use and Development Code. The Lower Blue Planning Commission is responsible for conducting the review, which could happen as early as February of 2019. The Hillyard property permit would be a new one, but Peak Materials may also need approval of an updated Maryland Creek permit since that permit may not allow material to be imported from other locations (processing operations may increase in intensity).
 
As neighbors in the Lower Blue Valley, we must sustain and protect the valley�s traditional agricultural character, promote the safety of the residents, livestock and wildlife, and maintain the environmental integrity of the valley through education, collaboration and community involvement. We cannot allow our water quality and air quality to be degraded.  A gravel mining operation would be antithetical to these values and as neighbors we must influence the permitting process to defeat this destructive project.
 
Specifically, we will need to:
�           gain the support of the entire Lower Blue Valley community, as well as other interested and/or vested parties
�           evaluate the impact of gravel mining on Highway 9 traffic (noise from both the trucks and the mining), air quality (from dust and diesel fumes), water of the Lower Blue River and its groundwater, wildlife, wetlands, recreation, and overall property values
�           hire expert witnesses to evaluate these impacts who can effectively testify at hearings and proceedings before the county and State. We will need to retain a mining engineer, wildlife expert, water expert, property appraisers, and others.
�           hire a consultant to develop, coordinate, and oversee our strategy
�           hire an attorney to advise us in certain matters
�           raise the money needed to finance the campaign
 
All of this must happen immediately. We must have our evidence available by the date of the earliest possible hearing of the Lower Blue Planning Commission (LBPC), which could be the first Thursday in February. If that body votes not to issue the CUP, Peak Materials has the right to appeal the decision to the Summit County Board of Commissioners. At that time, we would need to present the same case again with the expert witnesses.
 
The Colorado Mined Land Reclamation Board (MLRB) also has jurisdiction over gravel mining in Colorado. An applicant can apply for a permit from MLRB through its staff agency, the Colorado Division of Reclamation, Mining, and Safety (DRMS).  This can precede or follow review by Summit County.  We do not know in what direction Peak Materials will go, therefore, we must begin to prepare a case to present to MLRB with the same research. The denial of a permit at either the state or local level usually signals the defeat of the application. However, the mining company can continue the process with litigation.
 
The existing valley advocacy organization, Friends of the Lower Blue River (FOLBR), cannot be involved, other than to provide unbiased information, due to conflicts of interest related to its three board members who simultaneously serve on the LBPC. Therefore, I volunteer to supervise the campaign for no compensation and use my full visibility as nature photographer to gain support for the campaign. I have reached out to Harris Sherman, one of Colorado�s premier natural resource experts, to serve as our strategist and consultant in this effort. Harris is a former Executive Director of Colorado Dept. of Natural Resources, former Chairman of MLRB, and former Undersecretary USDA overseeing the U.S. Forest Service. He supervised the 2017 defeat of a proposed gravel quarry near Colorado Springs. He has agreed to represent us in this matter.
 
The name of the entity that will lead the campaign is Lower Blue Residents United. It is the new trade name of a non-profit corporation I started 20 years ago. The first phase of our campaign will be to make a presentation to LBPC as early as February and will require us raise initially $100,000 to finance the hiring of the aforementioned experts, an attorney, and Harris Sherman. I have already begun the fundraising process. If the IRS approves the reorganization of Lower Blue Residents United, donations will be tax deductible. We will learn this outcome in 30-90 days.
 
In any event, we are now soliciting donations to stop gravel mining in the Lower Blue Valley. Please consider just how much you wish not view, smell, and hear an industrial operation in our valley, and give generously. Send your checks today to:
 
Lower Blue Residents United
c/o John Fielder
POB 26890
Silverthorne CO 80497
 
Finally, there must be public outrage to this unacceptable attempt to rape our valley with an industrial operation. For now, the best thing YOU can do, other than donate money, is to be patient. A unified force of valley voices leading the charge will be far more effective than each of you individually speaking your mind at this time. The first and best opportunity for you to do exactly that will be at the Lower Blue Planning Commission hearing early next year. In the meantime, we will keep you up to date on any and all developments, and prompt you when good opportunities arise for you to express your feelings to the state, county, and the media.
 
We WILL stop this outrageous attack on our beautiful valley!
Sincerely,
 


John Fielder, Acorn Creek
john@johnfielder.com

 
 
 
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EAGLE POST 29

The eNewsletter of Friends of Eagles Nest Wilderness, apprising you of important activities in and around Eagles Nest, Holy Cross, and Ptarmigan Peak Wilderness Areas. 
FENW logo
Before we begin...
We are delighted to introduce the FENW ENDOWMENT FUND. Now, in addition to the usual routes for giving, yThe Summit Foundationou can make a bequest - a donation that will be invested through The Summit Foundation, and will provide support in perpetuity for FENW Wilderness projects. Learn more at www.fenw.org/joindonate/..
Dear *|FNAME|*
Gr
eetings! 

August 2018: 
DRIVEN WILD
Professor Paul Sutter

Chair, Department of History
University of Colorado






Right: Driven Wild cover. The image is "Headin' for the Hills", 1937, by Irvin Shope, from a Montana State Highway brochure

 
INTRODUCTION
In his book Driven Wild, Paul Sutter gave a fascinating and authoritative account of how the Wilderness Movement got its start nearly a century ago, grew into the founding of the Wilderness Society in 1935, and scored its greatest achievement, passage of the federal Wilderness Act in 1964.
In his essay below, Professor Sutter revisits those battles - the first one against a complex brew of the public's desire to see Nature, the explosive growth of the automobile industry, and the tourist boosterism of growing towns - all of which identified a singular initial target for preservationists: roads. Later battles of course arose with miners, dam builders, and loggers; Dr. Sutter brings us full circle to today's challenges.
Of the history, Sutter writes,  "Wilderness was not simply about saving large swaths of wild land for the recreational enjoyment of Americans; it was about making sure large swaths of wild land were not sacrificed to the recreational enjoyment of Americans." Perhaps even truer today than nearly a century ago.
[Images below are from Driven WIld]

DRIVEN WILD
�The Automobile and the Making of Modern Wilderness� � by Paul S. Sutter


Wilderness can seem timeless, a nature that exists outside of history. That is the power of its appeal. But as wilderness advocates face new questions about wilderness policy and management in the twenty-first century, it is worth remembering that the modern system of wilderness preservation arose as a response to a specific set of historical circumstances. The cultural appeal of wilderness has a history, as do the forces that imperil it, and effective wilderness advocacy requires that we understand that history.

How did a nation born of a devotion to transform wilderness come to embrace its preservation? That is the fundamental question in American wilderness history. When I first began to study the origins of modern American wilderness advocacy, I assumed that the story would hinge on some combination of ecological and ethical changes in how Americans thought about and sought to preserve wild nature. My research focused on the 1935 founding of the Wilderness Society, the first national organization devoted to the preservation of wilderness. Aldo Leopold, the great American conservationist, was one of the founders of the Wilderness Society and had, in fact, first suggested wilderness preservation in a landmark 1921 article. Leopold was a pioneering ecological thinker who, in the most famous section of his masterwork, A Sand County Almanac, had formulated a �land ethic� premised on the idea that the natural world had values of its own that we were bound to respect. Given Leopold�s presence at the founding, the modern wilderness idea must have been a product of such ecological and biocentric thinking. These intellectual gestures, it initially seemed to me, were what separated wilderness from the scenic national park idea that had only found real purchase with the creation of the National Park Service in 1916. 

But when I found myself one evening reading through the first edition of The Living Wilderness, the magazine of the Wilderness Society, I was surprised to find a different set of motivations animating the society�s founders. Every article in that first edition bemoaned the threats that roads, automobiles, and the recreational modernization of America�s public domain posed to the nation�s remaining wildlands. The modern wilderness idea, I realized, emerged not as a more ecologically and ethically sophisticated antidote to the economic transformation of the natural world. To the contrary, wilderness was about checking Americans� growing affection for outdoor recreation and the ways in which that affection, hitched to the powerful technological force of the automobile, was mechanizing and motorizing even the remotest parts of the continent. Wilderness was not simply about saving large swaths of wild land for the recreational enjoyment of Americans; it was about making sure large swaths of wild land were not sacrificed to the recreational enjoyment of Americans. [More from early issues of The Living Wilderness HERE]

Our experience of the landscape today is so profoundly shaped by the automobile and modern roadways that it is difficult to imagine the world without them, or how their steady creep across the landscape seemed alarming to conservationists. That the automobile democratized outdoor recreation and gave many Americans easy access to remote parts of the continent should not be discounted. For just that reason, the early leaders of the National Park Service were keen to develop the national parks for motor tourists. But for the founders of the Wilderness Society, mechanized and motorized access was a kind of ruination. Once the machine was unloosed in the garden, escaping its mechanized presence seemed essential to a minority of wilderness lovers. Wilderness was a bulwark against these invading forces, and, to a certain degree, a critique of the ways in which the National Park Service was doing business. 

The interwar years brought these threats to a boiling point. Not only did the number of automobiles increase dramatically, but this era saw the federal government move into road-building on a large scale. More than that, the Great Depression loosed onto the nation�s public lands a vast army of conservation workers, and often they built roads, campgrounds, and other facilities for motorized access. Another founder of The Wilderness Society, Benton MacKaye, was driven to advocate for wilderness when he saw his big idea of the era � an �Appalachian Trail,� which he envisioned in an article that also appeared in 1921 � increasingly compromised by plans for a series of skyline drives along the Appalachian ridgeline, roads that New Deal labor would play a major role in building. The interwar era was thus the moment in our history when getting back to nature increasingly meant driving to and through it. Wilderness preservation was a way of keeping at least some of the nation�s wildlands free from those forces and thus open to a different kind of recreational experience. As Leopold observed as the 1930s came to an end, �Recreational development is a job not of building roads into lovely country, but of building receptivity into the still unlovely human mind.�

We live today in another distinct era in America�s wilderness history, one that ought to remind us of the interwar years. The immediate postwar decades seemed different, as large-scale dam building and the aggressive move of the nation�s timber industry onto the national forests brought the threat of wholesale transformation to huge stretches of remaining public wildlands. Those extractive threats certainly remain today, particularly in the form of energy development. But over the last several decades, new recreational threats and challenges have become central to wilderness preservation and management. In a curious reprise of the forces that drove the creation of modern wilderness advocacy, off road vehicles have proliferated on many of the nation�s public wildlands that are not protected as wilderness. In a more vexing challenge to the nation�s wilderness system, mountain bikers and their advocacy organizations have fought for access to wilderness areas, raising fundamental questions about whether these newer forms of mechanized transport belong in wilderness. Many wilderness areas, particularly those near urban areas, have become so heavily used that their essential wilderness qualities are threatened. Even the smartphone revolution has fundamentally changed how Americans interact with wilderness. 

The strength of the founding generation of American wilderness advocates is not that they provide clear and definitive solutions to these new wilderness conundrums. It is, rather, that their advocacy had at its core a deep and critical engagement with our modern outdoor recreational habits and the technologies that have shaped them. The modern wilderness idea, and the system of public land preservation that flowed from it, emerged from a reckoning with a similar set of questions � questions that go to the core of why we have the environmental commitments that we do. This history is a vital resource as we face the future of wilderness preservation in a changing world.
  
ABOUT PAUL SUTTER
Dr. Paul SutterPaul S. Sutter is a Professor of History and Chair of the Department of History at the University of Colorado Boulder. As an environmental historian, he is interested in the many ways in which humans have interacted with, impacted, and thought about the natural world over time. He is the author of a number of books, including Driven Wild: How the Fight against the Automobile Launched the Modern Wilderness Movement. Whenever he can, he escapes to his mountain cabin, from which he can walk (or ski or snowshoe) into the Indian Peaks Wilderness Area.
Business Sponsor SPOTLIGHT on  one of our two major business sponsors. Developed by an oncologist for post-radiation skin therapy, Elite products provide soothing anti-aging benefits that are of special use in our intense, high altitude sunshine. Supplier to   Support ELITE -support FENW.
Make a donation to FENW....
 
... make a difference!

Here�s the 2018 Trail Projects schedule:
June 2 -National Trails Day
June 16 & again June 17 -Gateways Trail Day

July 27-29 -Slate Lake - llamas / 2 nights out
Aug 2 -FENW/Colorado Outward Bound School at Piney Lake - llamas
Aug 11 & again Aug 12 -Salt Lick Connector Trail with VOC. Register in advance after June 1 HERE
Aug 17-19 -Gore Creek Overnight - llamas / overnight

Sep 15 & again Sep 16 -Deluge Lake Trail with VOC
TBD -Lily Pad Lakes Plank Bridge Project - llamas
*Adopt-A-Trail on Deluge Creek� TBD
Learn about trail work here. 
 
Join us! for our Planning Meeting
THURSDAY, August 9, 5:30 PM,
USFS Offices (video link) Silverthorne (MAP) and Minturn
Details at www.fenw.org/

Be sure to follow us on facebook and twitter!
         
Hard copy newsletterOur hard copy newsletter is available. It contains two dozen fun and informative articles, all of them about FENW - past, present, and future. If you haven't received your copy, then we don't have your mailing address - please send it to us at info@fenw.org
Recent monthly eNewsletters 
 
CITY MARKET COMMUNITY REWARDS PROGRAM 
Please register your City Market Value Card, linking it to FENW, which will send rebates to FENW without compromising your earned fuel points. Please note that each card holder may only sign up for one tax exempt organization. THANKS!
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EAGLE POST 28

The eNewsletter of Friends of Eagles Nest Wilderness, apprising you of important activities in and around Eagles Nest, Holy Cross, and Ptarmigan Peak Wilderness Areas. 
FENW logo
Before we get started, here is a message especially for Front Range residents:
FENW Denver Convocation* - Sunday July 15, 3:00-5:00
2454 S. Gilpin Street, Denver (
MAP)
Front Range members! Its not easy getting to FENW meetings in the mountains, so we're having an informal gathering in Denver. This is a great opportunity to learn more about the Friends of Eagles Nest Wilderness and its programs.  Please feel free to drop in and chat with others that treasure our three wilderness areas. For more information or to RSVP, email jimofcolorado@gmail.com
* a group of eagles
Dear *|FNAME|*Upper Boulder Lake
Gr
eetings! 

July 2018: WHERE THE HEART IS: An essay on solitude
by Dr. Esther M. Doyle

 
INTRODUCTION
It has been a busy, sometimes frenetic rollout of summer � early snowmelt, discovery of winter�s work - thousands of beetle-killed deadfalls blocking trails, training and deployment of USFS seasonals and FENW volunteers (who now number more than 80), and, of course, the scary Sugarloaf and - especially - Buffalo fires, and the residual angst as the heat and aridity continue. 

Fortunately, relief is readily available, at no cost: wilderness. A hundred years ago, the founders of the Wilderness Society, and later the Wilderness Act, began their push to preserve that most essential quality of the US landscape: untrammeled solitude. Whether or not you can get out to your favorite wilderness spot, read how one person described her home of the heart. Below are excerpts from �Where the Heart Is� by Esther M. Doyle (1910-2006), a summer visitor to Eagles Nest for the last four decades of the last century. She describes �those places that we encounter with a shock of recognition. We know immediately that they are ours. We claim them perhaps because they first claim us.� Esther identifies three essential components to such a place: separateness, solitude, and simplicity. Below are excerpts and illustrations from her monograph; you can read the entire version HERE. We have a few bound copies available; send your mailing address to info@fenw.org.

Her words are even truer today than when they were written, nearly fifty years ago.

WHERE THE HEART IS
Esther M. Doyle


Esther DoyleIt happened the summer I was ten [1920]. My father bought a canoe, a sturdy red one. We launched it on that part of the Charles River that winds through West Roxbury near Boston. On summer Sundays we would take it from its rack in the boat house furnish it with backboards and pillows from the locker, climb into it with our lunches and the Sunday paper, and paddle downstream. Although the journey was pleasant � the quiet of the countryside broken only by the trill of red-winged blackbirds in the cattails or by the dripping of water from lifted paddles � I was eager to get to my destination. At Second Pond we went ashore.

Lunch over, my parents settled down to the business of the Sunday paper. Now I was free. Across the daisy field I ran alone to my secret place, a small clearing beyond the raspberry patch where a single pine tree grew. Tall and aloof, the tree was nevertheless my friend. It welcomed me, comforted me. It spoke to me of growth, of serenity, of endurance. When I was with my tree, my heart was home. 

solitude 01I don�t know how many secret reunions there were in those early summers. One day there were no more. The canoe was sold. I never visited my pine tree again. Now in my heart�s eye (if the mind has an eye why not the heart?) I still see that tree. It was the first home of my heart.

What is a home of the heart? For one who is a wanderer it may be a simple shelter. Padraic Colum�s old woman of the road longs for a little house:
�O, to have a little house!
To own the hearth and stool and all!�
For one who is no longer young it may be the home of his youth. Thomas Hood longs for his birthplace:
�I remember, I remember
The house where I was born.�

For one who is a foreigner the home of the heart may be his native land. Keats understands the homesickness of Ruth in the Bible:
�� the heart of Ruth, when, sick for home,
She stood in tears amid the alien corn.�

Whatever one�s longing, the need for a home of the heart seems to be universal.

solitude 03However, I do not speak of homes we have known in our youth, nor of those we long for in our dreams. Nor do I speak of beautiful scenes that touch our hearts. Each has his own list of those. Rather I speak of those places that we encounter with a shock of recognition. We know immediately that they are ours. We claim them perhaps because they first claim us. Just as I found my pine tree, it found me.

There have been other homes of the heart since that early time. Some of them I have known only for a day or a month. One I have returned to again and again. I found it twelve years ago [1959] at the end of a hot midwestern summer. A friend and I had driven west to find relief in the cool mountains. Once out of Denver and over Loveland Pass, we agreed to take as long as we needed, travelling until we found �the place.� Late in the afternoon of that first day we recognized it at once. There was no need to explore further. Our hearts had found home.

What says,  �Here you belong!�? Answering that question is like trying to tell why you fall in love. Yet as I think of my homes of the heart, there are certain distinctive features that all of them share. Each has offered me separateness, solitude, and simplicity. 

[Separateness�]

My home of the heart also offers solitude, not in the sense of being lonely but rather in the sense of being alone. As Joseph Wood Krutch pointed out, every human being needs periods of withdrawal from his everyday world. To be alone, to ease into a solitude that is possible only when one is separate, is for me to begin the process of restoration. Wordsworth knew that �Nature never did betray the heart that loved her.� Here I know it, too. Alone, I am a part of all that is around me. Lying in the daisy field with the blue sky above me, I know that I belong to the earth. Walking in the pine forest, I share the serenity of a tree. Resting by a mountain stream, I sense the ongoing of all life. At last, I begin to see with the inward eye which Wordsworth declares is �the bliss of solitude.� I come close to being at one with the natural world of which I am apart. I am at home.

solitude 03In my home of the heart where there is separateness and solitude, there is also simplicity. A small cabin made of hand-hewn logs is all the shelter I need. A bed, a table, a chair, a stove are its essential furnishings. I no longer feel possessed  by my possessions. ��Tis the gift to be simple, �tis the gift to be free,� goes the old song. Here I am as simple as life ever allows me to be. 

Not only am I free from the things that I usually think of as necessary to my life, but, more important, I am free from society�s demands upon me. Here, for example, I am far from the problems of Eliot�s Prufrock. I do not need to prepare a face to meet the faces that I meet. Nor, like Prufrock, do I measure out my life in coffee spoons. I am myself.

In a world where powerful forces are at work against our true selves, it is not always possible to be oneself. These forces demand that we act out certain roles without which society could not survive. We are known as doctor, lawyer, merchant chief; as father, mother, sister, friend. And, for the most part, we ourselves need these roles. They help us to establish our identities. They are part of what and who we are. But on occasion we need to shed them.
�My heart is an onion,
You may peel it if you will,�
Writes E.P,. Lister humorously. Occasionally we need to look into our hearts, to peel off the outer layers of our professions, our soles in society, in order to learn what lies within.

To be myself is possible only in separateness, in solitude, and in simplicity.

solitude 04My home of the heart, then is a place that claims me even as I claim it. My home of the heart offers me separateness that clarifies, solitude that restores and simplicity that recreates. Here as I learn who I am, I echo a wish of  Dag Hammarskjold, �If only I may grow firmer, simpler, quieter, warmer.

Where the heart is, there is home.

ABOUT ESTHER DOYLE
Dr. Esther M. DoyleBorn near Boston, Esther became a teacher, served in the American Red Cross Military Welfare Service during WWII, and in 1944 joined the faculty of Juniata College in central PA, where she taught and oversaw the college�s dramatic productions. She was especially fond of Readers Theater. �It�s just telling the story, but in a dramatic way,� is how she described it, and on her visits to the home of her heart in Summit County, she enjoyed reciting poetry and theatrical passages with and for her friends.
 
Esther was active in the Church of the Brethren, which founded Juniata in 1876. She declined professional opportunities in metropolitan areas, explaining that �the gentle people� in central Pennsylvania were one of her biggest inspirations for staying. And stay she did, becoming a �revered professor, an icon on the campus of Juniata College for decades,� as the local newspaper described her. She earned a PhD from Northwestern in 1964.  In 2001 she received an honorary doctorate of humane letters from Juniata. The foyer of the new Center for the Performing Arts is named for her.
 
Always, for more than four decades, she returned to the home of her heart in Summit County, where her memory endures.
 

 
WELCOME USFS INTERNS!
The USFS has deployed five Wilderness Ranger Interns this summer on a variety of projects. You can view all five on the FENW website. We've introduced Ron, Ainsley, and Maria; this month meet the rest of the crew: Hannah and Franz:
HannahOriginally from the greater Cleveland area, Hannah just finished her 3rd year at the University of Pittsburgh where she studies chemical engineering. Her love of the wilderness began with national park family vacations, and only grew from there. In the summer of 2016 Hannah worked as a wrangler on a dude ranch in Bridger-Teton National Forest, Wyoming. More recently, she worked as an EMT in Hampton, Pennsylvania.
My name is Franz; I am a Southern California boy who loves the outdoors. I am currently a senior at San Diego State University studying Recreation and Tourism Management with an emphasis on Outdoor Resource Management. I was born in the Los Angeles area and moved down to San Diego when I was 7 years old. Most of my life I was involved with organized sports and now I stay active doing the things I love every chance I get. I enjoy surfing, skateboarding, camping/backpacking, and riding my dirt bike down in Baja. I have not spent much time in Colorado and am extremely excited to explore and experience the beauty of the Eagles Nest Wilderness.
Make a donation to FENW....
 
... make a difference!

Just in time to add to your summer calendar, here�s the 2018 Trail Projects schedule:
June 2 -National Trails Day
June 16 & again June 17 -Gateways Trail Day

July 27-29 -Slate Lake - llamas / 2 nights out
Aug 2 -FENW/Colorado Outward Bound School at Piney Lake - llamas
Aug 11 & again Aug 12 -Salt Lick Connector Trail with VOC. Register in advance after June 1 HERE
Aug 17-19 -Gore Creek Overnight - llamas / overnight
Sep 15 & again Sep 16 -Deluge Lake Trail with VOC
TBD -Lily Pad Lakes Plank Bridge Project - llamas
*Adopt-A-Trail on Deluge Creek� TBD
Learn about trail work here. 
 
Join us! for our SPECIAL
SOCIAL & Planning Meeting
THURSDAY, July 12, 5:00 PM,
Copper Mountain Metro District Community Room  ( MAP)
Please RSVP to info@fenw.org for a head count
Details at www.fenw.org/

Be sure to follow us on facebook and twitter!
         
Hard copy newsletterOur hard copy newsletter - the first in 3 years - is available. It contains two dozen fun and informative articles, all of them about FENW - past, present, and future. If you haven't received your copy, then we don't have your mailing address - please send it to us at info@fenw.org
Recent monthly eNewsletters  
 
CITY MARKET COMMUNITY REWARDS PROGRAM 
Please register your City Market Value Card, linking it to FENW, which will send rebates to FENW without compromising your earned fuel points. Please note that each card holder may only sign up for one tax exempt organization. THANKS!
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EAGLE POST 27

EAGLE POST - The newsletter of FENW logoFriends of Eagles Nest Wilderness, apprising you of important activities in and around Eagles Nest, Holy Cross, and Ptarmigan Peak Wilderness Areas. 
Dear *|FNAME|*
Gr
eetings! 

May 2018: THE MYSTERY OF AERIE CABIN
by Maria Eisemann

 
Introduction: In an earlier Newsletter, Andy Walker described the reconstruction of the cabin on Bighorn Creek, which has been in his family for more than a century. This month, Maria Eisemann writes tenderly about a more mysterious place that, like the cabin on Bighorn Creek, lies deep inside Eagles Nest Wilderness. She's calling it Aerie Cabin (not its real name). Aerie Cabin was rediscovered fifty years ago after lying abandoned for the previous fifty years. The family who rediscovered it, together with close friends like Maria and her family, have reawakened the spirit of the place. Maria�s research has unearthed photos from the mining days of the 19th century, and she has carefully transcribed the fascinating diaries left by visitors over the past half-century (you can read excerpts below). Hers is a labor of love and a work in progress, and we are happy that she has taken time to provide an update for us, which captures the magical romance of the place.
The Mystery of Aerie Cabin
by Maria Eisemann
There are places on this earth that touch your soul. Places to drink deep and nourish your mind with wonder. Cause you stop and look at the details and then step back and look at the grandeur. Places where you come to escape, to share with those you love, to hold secret and even for some, a place chosen to be laid to rest for eternity. Places that make you love this world and life.
One such place exists in a soaring location of great beauty in Eagles Nest Wilderness, orphaned by those who built it and decades later adopted by those it captivated. It is a cabin built soon after the Utes were driven from their land, during the time of the Colorado mining boom of the late 1800s. Its origins are obscure and have led me on a journey to solve its mysteries and record its history. Such a special place is held secret, but there are many things about it to share in hopes of preserving its memory and importance.
The cabin was built about 1880 and abandoned early in the 20th century. It was rediscovered by chance, spotted by a family in the early 1960�s. They looked down from a ledge to which they had climbed during a hike, and saw windows and logs and ran down to explore. The cabin was well constructed and large for that high elevation and isolated location; trees were growing out of its sod roof. It had two glass-paned windows in the front and a proper door with a black door knob, fixtures remarkable for such a remote location. ConvenienceA note scratched into the door said, �Please leave my stuff alone, I�ll need it when I get back,� and was dated 1911 or 1918. Inside it was much like the owner may have left it: a jean jacket, shredded with time, hung on a nail; eyeglasses, kitchen ware, woodstove, beds and curtains all remained but were faded and dusty with age. Old newspapers lined some of the walls. Two inches of dirt, sifted down from the sod roof, lay on the floor. Outbuildings and mining implements and gear lay all around the property.

A search revealed the patented mine, which the family purchased. They knew, however, that it was too remote and wild ever to �own,� and decided to leave it open to visitors, although they have never advertised its location. They left a note with instructions on how to use, care for and leave the cabin better than visitors found it. And they started a log book, which visitors have contributed to for more than 50 years.The very first entry in the log book emotes a remarkable occurrence that resulted from a tragic climbing accident on the Maroon Bells in 1970, leading to the death of two individuals important in Colorado history, one of whom is buried in a coffin near the cabin. This set the stage for the modern story of the cabin.
 Then and now
This excerpt is from a letter written by the climber�s widow:

 Ed's widow & cabin owners    If I wrote all that was in my heart it would sound like a love letter and maybe that�s what this is - you can�t know how deeply moved I was and am by your willingness to share your valley with us.  In my total state of shock, I knew I could reach out to you and find warmth and strength and love and understanding - It helps me to know that Ed would approve of his small part of our valley.
     I�ll never know what sacrifices you made to be here and to help and you can never know how much it meant to me.

Later the owners left a note to entice visitors to read and leave their addition to the log book:

Soon after discovering the [cabin] we started leaving a notebook log for the records of visits and travelers. The [cabin] visitors have revealed literary talents, maybe just ambitions, that have left an intriguing record since 1973. And in this body of writing there is adventure, love, fear, desperation, loneliness. The rediscovered [cabin] has written its own book. That�s what many of the following pages are about.

And so began a story written by the people who have had a relationship with this place. They wrote with the log book balanced on their knees, on the front deck (of sorts) looking at the scenery, and by lamplight at the table by the stove, year after year, all seasons. There were young, adventurous men who first came on their own and then each brought his best girl to see if she would stand this test and be �the one.� That is how I came to this place the first time and fell more in love with the man I was to marry (because he passed MY test). Others have celebrated marriage, young love, humor, adventure and their survival against the elements inside and outside its log walls and have poured their souls into its pages. The log books, carefully collected, sorted and now transcribed, tell tales just as the owners foretold in their introduction. You can read excerpts HERE


At least 3 others who appear in the log books have passed away and had their remains brought to the cabin, including the family patriarch.

As the cabin crumbles by the weather of time and may be gone forever unless it is somehow preserved, the log books may be all that remain to tell this tale. They do not, however, provide the anore cart remainsswer to the mystery of the cabin - who built it and what became of them. For that, I continue my research; intriguing clues have come to light but require a longer narrative to tell. The cabin may go back to dust but its story will hopefully also touch and move you to remember, preserve and love remote places of meaning and the importance of our history.
 

Maria DiBiase EisemannABOUT MARIA DiBIASE EISEMANN: Maria was born in Maine to a large Italian-American family. She came west at 18 to attend college at Colorado State University.  It was there she met the love of her life, John Eisemann.  John introduced her to this amazing cabin the first year they met.  They loved to hike up and stay at the cabin and ski the backcountry every winter. They tied the knot, with a pre-nuptial celebration at the cabin, and spent their first 3 years of married life in the Peace Corps in the Philippines.  They came back to the US where they had 3 children together: Alana, Leif and Josie.  All three of their children have grown to love the cabin and learned the route there on their own. Maria�s professional life has centered on cleaning up our air and she is currently the transportation policy analyst at the Colorado Energy Office.  
WELCOME USFS INTERNS!
The USFS will deploy five Wilderness Ranger Interns this summer on a variety of projects. You can view all five on the FENW website. Last month we introduced Ron Culver; this month meet Maria and Ainsley:
USFS Intern Maria
My name is Maria and I�m coming straight from my college graduation at St. Lawrence University in New York to the White River National Forest. I grew up in Vermont and decided to stay east for school despite the allure and pull of the wild west, so I�m very excited to finally make my way across the Mississippi to some bigger mountains. My travels as a skier and geology major have brought me through Colorado quite a few times before but this time I�m looking forward to sticking around for longer than a week. I brought my skis with me, so in addition to the work I�ll be doing as a Wilderness Ranger and Trails Intern I�m hoping to find some leftover patches to get some summertime turns on, or at least doing some recon for the next season! In my spare time you can find me hiking, snacking, riding my bike named Rigatoni, or in the kitchen creating recipes for gourmet backpacking meals and working on refining my bread baking skills.
Ainsley is a recent graduate from the University of Massachusetts Amherst with her BS in Environmental Conservation and is continuing her schooling at UMass for a Masters in Public Policy. She�s passionate about sustainability and has transitioned her institution towards resource conservation practices during her time as the Secretary of Sustainability for the Student Government Association. Ainsley loves identifying plants and searching for amphibians in her free time. She plans to formulate more equitable policies for the earth and all its inhabitants in her future.
Make a donation to FENW....
 
... make a difference!

Just in time to add to your summer calendar, here�s the 2018 Trail Projects schedule:
June 2 -National Trails Day
June 16 & again June 17 -Gateways Trail Day
July 27-29 -Slate Lake - llamas / 2 nights out
Aug 2 -FENW/Colorado Outward Bound School at Piney Lake - llamas
Aug 11 & again Aug 12 -Salt Lick Connector Trail with VOC. Register in advance after June 1 HERE
Aug 17-19 -Gore Creek Overnight - llamas / overnight
Sep 15 & again Sep 16 -Deluge Lake Trail with VOC
TBD -Lily Pad Lakes Plank Bridge Project - llamas
*Adopt-A-Trail on Deluge Creek� TBD
Learn about trail work here. 
 
Join us! for our next
Planning Meeting
THURSDAY, June 14, 5:30 PM,
USFS Minturn & USFS Silverthorne ( MAP)
Details at www.fenw.org/

Be sure to follow us on facebook and twitter!
         
DENVER GROUP? Jim Alexander is interested in forming a group of Denver residents who love Wilderness in Summit & Eagle counties. If you are interested in a meet and greet get-together, email Jim at info@fenw.org.
Hard copy newsletterOur hard copy newsletter - the first in 3 years - went into the mail a few weeks ago. It contains two dozen fun and informative articles, all of them about FENW - past, present, and future. If you haven't received your copy, then we don't have your mailing address - please send it by replying to this email. 
Recent monthly eNewsletters  
 
CITY MARKET COMMUNITY REWARDS PROGRAM 
Please register your City Market Value Card, linking it to FENW, which will send rebates to FENW without compromising your earned fuel points. Please note that each card holder may only sign up for one tax exempt organization. THANKS!
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EAGLE POST 26

EAGLE POST - The newsletter of FENW logoFriends of Eagles Nest Wilderness, apprising you of important activities in and around Eagles Nest, Holy Cross, and Ptarmigan Peak Wilderness Areas. 
Dear *|FNAME|*
Gr
eetings! 

May 2018: PROTECTING EAGLE NEST'S MIGRATORY BIRDS 
by Dr. Susan Bonfield
Executive Director, Environment for the Americas
INTRODUCTION:
It�s May, and while the spring breakers have left the high country (to the relief of some), the brown creepers and many other beings � little feathered ones - are arriving (to the delight of bird lovers). Their migrations are arduous, and their habitats � both north and south -  are increasingly threatened. Conservation organizations in the US have been active for a century protecting North American bird habitats, but less was done south of the border. Enter Dr. SuEFTA logosan Bonfield, who saw a need to expand efforts to protect winter habitats of our birds. Thus, Environment for the Americas (EFTA) was born, aiming especially to recruit local Mexican and Central American young people to the cause. 

Sue, the founder and Executive Director of EFTA, was planning to write for this newsletter about EFTA's inspiring educational outreach programs in Latin America. Unfortunately, just as the bird world was celebrating the centennial of an historic treaty to protect migratory birds, they received a nasty gut punch from our own government, and Sue�s focus shifted � in her essay below she wants to alert us to a new, potentially devastating development in the US.  
Protecting Migratory Birds
by Dr. Susan Bonfield
Executive Director, Environment for the Americas (EFTA)

For a century, the 1918 international Migratory Bird Treaty Act has been the cornerstone of efforts to protect migratory birds. But as the Washington Post reported in an article last month, the wings of the Bird Treaty were officially clipped by the Department of the Interior, just as bird enthusiasts were celebrating the Act's 100th year. Diminishing its authority is a serious blow to conservationists and many avian-friendly organizations, including EFTA.
 
We founded EFTA at our cabin - nestled close to boundary of Eagles Nest Wilderness. Through our keystone education program, International Migratory Bird Day (IMBD), we have addressed a variety of topics, Wilson's warblersuch as the importance of shade coffee, reducing window collisions, keeping cats indoors, and recycling. In 2016, IMBD focused on the anniversary of the 1918 Act and celebrated the signing of the Treaty between the U.S. and Canada, and subsequently with Mexico and Japan.
 
The need for protections for migratory birds was cleaBird hatr since the early 1900s, when the trade of bird feathers fed the millinery industry and women�s fashion, leading to the decline of some bird populations. The elegant egret, for example, with its long white feather plumes, was at risk of extinction because of this industry. An array of other species, from songbirds to gamebirds, were harvested for display on hats. Feathers were often just part of the decorations: eggs and even entire nests were also used as adornments!
 
A movement was born when women, appalled by the use of wildlife as a fashion statement, helped launch the Audobon Society, which urged a stop to the use of feathers and helped pass the landmark Migratory Bird Treaty Act, which has protected nearly all migratory bird species in the U.S. and Canada. This type of national and international cooperation is essential to safeguard migratory birds, whose long-distance flights often cross political borders, exposing them to widely varying cultures, conservation philosophies, and laws. 
 Red naped sapsucker
The new opinion weakens the Act by making it permissible to harm migratory birds if the action that causes it is not directly associated with the �take� of birds. This includes disasters that impact many birds across larger geographic areas, such as oil spills, to local actions, such as pesticide use and construction. Where once a company would have been required to wait until swallows nesting beneath a bridge had successfully raised their young, as of April 15th, it can choose to move forward, destroy nests, and kill the young of a bird that has journeyed as many as 1,000 miles to nest.
 
In 2017, EFTA joined with conservation partners at the United Nations Environment Program to create a new, joint effort, World Migratory Bird Day - this Saturday, May 12, 2018. It is a bitter irony that as we celebrate at more than 600 sites our first year promoting a unification of our voices for bird conservation, the challenges to protecting migratory birds along the migratory routes that span the Americas are significantly heightened.
 
HummingbirdAs spring returns to the high country, many of us delight in the arrival of Wilson�s Warblers, diminutive Broad-tailed Hummingbirds, Hermit Thrushes with their beautiful melody, and White-crowned Sparrows that sing from the willows. As we welcome them back, we must also heed the achievements of the past 100 years and work to ensure that our migratory birds are protected as they return to our rapidly growing counties. 

Help restore the integrity of the Migratory Bird Treaty Act by contacting your federal representatives.
About Dr. Susan Bonfield: After studying Black-legged Kittiwakes in Alaska, Sue returned to the lower 48 where she has since gDr. Susan Bonfieldained more than two decades of experience in bird research and education. She has conducted bird surveys, run banding stations, and participated in bird research programs in Maine, Virginia, California, and Colorado. Because of her interest in education and bird conservation, she enjoys applying her knowledge of birds to programs that involve people of all ages and cultures. She has created education programs in the U.S. and Mexico, assisted with workshops on bird monitoring and conservation in both countries, taught basic identification courses, and led a course for the National Conservation Training Center of the US Fish & Wildlife Service. Susan holds a B.S. in Biology from Randolph-Macon Woman's College, an M.S. in Ecology, Fisheries, and Wildlife from the University of Michigan, and a PhD in Human Dimensions of Natural Resources from Colorado State University.
 
WELCOME USFS INTERNS!
The USFS will deploy five Wilderness Ranger Interns this summer on a variety of projects. We'll be introducing you to them in our newsletter. Here is the first: Ron Culver:
Born and raised in El Dorado, Arkansas, Ron is currently a student at the University of Kansas. From an early age he learned from his father  wilderness ethics and a respect for wildlife. 
 
Ron is an Eagle Scout, and the summer of 2016 he worked at Philmont Scout Ranch as a program counselor specializing in interpretation and fly fishing.
 
During his free time he enjoys playing guitar and mandolin and getting into the backcountry to fish and observe wildlife. He hopes his summer in Holy Cross and Eagles Nest Wildernesses will give him meaningful experiences towards a career in wilderness conservation. Welcome, Ron!
 
Make a donation to FENW....
 
... make a difference!

Just in time to add to your summer calendar, here�s the 2018 Trail Projects schedule:
  • Gateways Trail Day � June 16 & 17
  • National Trails Day � June 2 
  • East Vail Overnight � Aug 
  • Deluge Lake Trail with VOC � Sep
  • Overnight registration box installation � TBD 
  • Lily Pad Lakes Plank Bridge Project � TBD 
  • Salt Lick Connector Trail with VOC � Aug 11-12
  • Adopt-A-Trail on Deluge, potentially Bighorn � TBD 
  • FENW/Colorado Outward Bound, Piney Lake � Aug 2
Learn about trail work here. 
 
Join us! for our next
Planning Meeting
THURSDAY, May 10, 5:30 PM,
USFS Minturn & USFS Silverthorne ( MAP)
Details at www.fenw.org/

Be sure to follow us on
    and      !
DENVER GROUP? Jim Alexander is interested in forming a group of Denver residents who love Wilderness in Summit & Eagle counties. If you are interested in a meet and greet get-together, email Jim at info@fenw.org.
Hard copy newsletterOur hard copy newsletter - the first in 3 years - went into the mail on April 30. It contains two dozen fun and informative articles, all of them about FENW - past, present, and future. If you haven't received your copy, then we don't have your mailing address - please send it by replying to this email. Here are Mike, Joan, and Bill at the mailing party on a sunny spring day. Mail party







 
Recent monthly eNewsletters  
 
CITY MARKET COMMUNITY REWARDS PROGRAM 
Please register your City Market Value Card, linking it to FENW, which will send rebates to FENW without compromising your earned fuel points. Please note that each card holder may only sign up for one tax exempt organization. THANKS!
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