Wilderness and Recreation Issues

Couple a growing population with an active program to market the "great outdoors" and you get competition for a finite resource...
Public Lands
photo credit: BlueRibbon Coalition


The reference: [ MAJOR GATEWAY ] indicates a link to a LARGE Special Section.


The Future
of Wilderness

  • Remaining True to the Intent of Wilderness   
    (A keynote speech presented in November 2004 by Wilderness-elder Michael Frome critical of the state of the wilderness movement for it's failure to remain true to the intent of Wilderness)

  • Wilderness Rock Bolting    [ MAJOR Gateway webpage ]
    (A controversial issue with major implications for Wilderness Management. Should the outdoor retailer, REI, dictate Wilderness policy?)

  • Wilderness Recreation Strategy
    (Wilderness Management within the Forest Service is undergoing a radical overhaul. This document, obtained from the Forest Service, indicates the direction in which its new management direction is headed. More information can be found at the USFS Wilderness Agenda Home Page)

  • Heartland Institute Launches Attack on Wilderness   
    (This anti-environmental institute, funded in part by ARC member corporations, has launched an offensive against "Wilderness" claiming: Americans "seek more readily accessible areas, perceived as wild but likely to have at least some developed facilities.")

  • The Wise Use Movement: Policy Objectives
    (Lists the 25 Points of the " Wise Use Agenda " and primary policy objectives.)

  • The Wise Use Agenda: Wilderness
    (Provides a concise statement about the Wise Use agenda and quotes the Wise Use Movement's proposal to: "Perfect the Wilderness Act".)

  • U.S. May limit wilderness access
    (What should land managers do when increased visitor use threatens "Wilderness Values?")

  • Solitude No More?   [recommended]
    (The issue of "Wilderness Solitude" is splintering the community of Wilderness Users and Wilderness Advocates.)

  • Saving Mount Hood from our loving soles
    (A Forest Service plan to protect the sensitive backcountry would severely limit access to some of the area's most popular trails.)  Updates: 1   2   3   4   5.

  • Congressional Wilderness Hearing   
    (Testimony before a "kangaroo court" run by wilderness opponents, Congressmen Hansen and Chenoweth.)



  • Four Season Mountain Resorts     [ MAJOR Gateway webpage ]
    (The USFS, in conjunction with private partners, has made resort development a high priority item ... ecological consequences and public interest - 'be damned'.)



  • User Conflict is a growing issue  [ MAJOR Gateway webpage ]
    (With more persons traveling to America's public lands in order to experience an ever great array of recreational pursuits, using ever more powerful and capable equipment and machines, the occurrence of direct or perceived conflict between users has increased to critical proportions.)

        photo: Mimi Mather


Mt. Bicycles
and Wilderness

  • Issues associated with Mt. Bike Access     [ MINOR Gateway webpage ]
    (Mt. Bicycles, like all forms of mechanized transport, are expressly prohibited from being used within designated Wilderness Areas. There is a growing issue regarding access for this form of recreation.)


Wilderness Management

  • Wilderness Awareness Toolbox     [ excellent resource ]
    (This Wilderness Awareness Toolbox provides information, guidelines and examples about wilderness and wilderness management.)



  • Recent Research Findings   [ MAJOR Gateway webpage ]
    A recently held, federally sponsored, symposium suggests reason for caution with respect to charging recreational user-fees, especially for Wilderness access.

  • Recreation Fees in Wilderness and Other Public Lands    [EXCELLENT]
    This very complete and outstanding Annotated Reading List comes from the Rocky Mountain Research Station of the USDA Department of Agriculture.



  • Pay-to-Play Buys Access
    (Minnesota Dept. of Natural Resources employee says: "There isn't a lot of organization in the OHV community, but we actively search out groups because we have received money which we must spend.")

  • Is the Forest Service the "Microsoft" of the Recreation World?
    (This essay asks a valid question. But, be wary of the organization asking it! Do we want funding to protect the resource or to exploit it?)

  • Trail Organizations Join BLM
    (BLM 'Double-Speak' reported by an ARC member: "These partnerships spotlight the critical importance of protecting these public land treasures and underscore the various recreational opportunities...")


Forest Service



    The following links will allow you to view assorted documents involving the BLM and organizations representing the wreckreation community.

  • BLM - American Motorcyclist Association Partnership 
    BLM, as a partner, will identify these trails and trail systems as outstanding motorcycling opportunities, will work with AMA to identify additional riding opportunities on lands under its stewardship...

  • BLM - California 4 Wheel Drive Partnership 
    In return, BLM agrees to: identify these trails as outstanding four-wheel drive opportunities, work with CA4WDC to identify additional four-wheel drive opportunities on BLM land...

  • BLM/ARC - Availability and Use of the Toolbox for the Great Outdoors 
    The BLM in partnership with the American Recreation Coalition have produces a "toolbox" full of ideas for public-private partnership, privatization and commercialization of recreational opportunities. Available to the general public on CD for $50.



    In the summer of 2005, park activists in Canada and the US produced this document to serve as guidepost by which park-related management decisions could be measured

  • Declaration on the Principles of Parks 
    "We the undersigned, wish all to know that the following tenets, in their totality and in combination, are the true principles that should guide the management of parks, under whatever designation or jurisdiction:..."


Other Major


Special Topics
& Resources


Abusing the
concept of