After more than a decade of work by local leaders on legislative efforts to protect these areas, citizens are pushing for the designation of three new national monuments here. National monument designations for Mojave Trails, Sand to Snow, and Castle Mountains will preserve these pristine landscapes for current and future generations to enjoy.
A recent flight in Utah revealed the wildness of federal public lands like Bears Ears and the Greater Canyonlands, and the heavy industrial impacts to state lands like the tar sands at PR Springs. State lands in this case tended to be managed more for profit, with less regard for the condition of the land and water. The land speaks for itself when looking at the issue of states taking over federal land. Have a look and see if you can tell the difference between federal and state lands here.
As winter settles into the Rocky Mountains we, who live here, hunker in and watch. We watch the snowflakes fall, watch fingers and toes when the cold gets extreme, watch our friends' faces for frostbite, and watch the forecasts for the next big dump bringing fresh powder and smiles on the faces of skiers, and frowns on the faces of the pilots. Unless, of course, the pilot also is a skier☺
I am on my way home from some very revealing flights in Arizona a vision of the movie Avatar comes into mind. No, it is not the similarity of the jungles of Pandora to Arizona, because what I am flying over is a vista of phantasmagoric island mountain ranges piercing the sky from horizon to horizon. The high desert floor in Pinal County, Arizona is punctuated by extrusive igneous rock formations, jagged cliffs and...
A blue-bird Colorado day and the last of the gold leaves in the Thompson Divide were a treat from the air for Trout Unlimited, Thompson Divide Coalition and 5280 Magazine. The 221,500-acre Thompson Divide is home to critical wildlife habitat for big game, rare native trout and animals like lynx, moose and mountain lion. This backcountry haven is the lifeblood of surrounding communities dependent on the tourism of sportsmen, skiers, motorized recreationists, and it provides critical grazing land to support the local ranching industry.
It was one of those idyllic fall days in Aspen, Colorado. The Roaring Fork River was rushing from a recent passing storm; the golden leaves of aspens cast a spotlight on a man passionately speaking to a group of students. Tourists visiting the spot began to congregate around the discussion and the speaker found himself in the middle of a crowd like John the Baptist collecting souls. I was the speaker, the topic was the creation of our Flight Across America Program (FLAA) as John Denver and I first envisioned it, and the gathering crowd was made up of fanatical John Denver supporters, celebrating the 18th anniversary of his death at a beautiful spot along the river, called the John Denver Sanctuary in Aspen. What a coinkidink.
Where there's smoke there's fire, where there is drought there is incendiary quick-moving fire, and this summer we have seen our share. In the last Captain's Log I recounted flying through the dense smoke to identify lands for wildlife connectivity and habitat. This last month I was flying experts over the devastation that many of these fires caused...

Where there's smoke there's fire, where there is drought there is incendiary quick-moving fire, and this summer we have seen our share. In the last Captain's Log I recounted flying through the dense smoke to identify lands for wildlife connectivity and habitat. This last month I was flying experts over the devastation that many of these fires caused...

The recent toxic mine waste spill into the Animas River in Colorado raises concerns that a similar spill could happen in the Boise River headwaters. The Boise River provides 25% of the City of Boise's drinking water and serves as a critical source of water for irrigation, recreation and fish and wildlife habitat.
The Badger - Two Medicine is a 165,000 acre area in the heart of the Crown of the Continent. Bounded by Glacier National Park and the Blackfeet Reservation, with wilderness to the west and south, the area is a Traditional Cultural District because of its religious and cultural significance to the Blackfeet Nation.
The National Wildlife Federation, Colorado Wildlife Federation, the Theodore Roosevelt Conservation Partnership and Park County officials worked with EcoFlight to fly reporters over South Park as part of the campaign to build support to conserve the area's rich water, wildlife, fish and recreation resources...
Sometimes I wonder what I'm a gonna do but there ain't no cure for the summer time blues, Eddie Cochran 1958. Most of you will not remember that song but I do and it came to mind when I landed at Aspen airport and realized hardly a flight this summer has gone by without some sort of weather challenge. Instead of our typical bluebird skies, they have been gray and threatening for most of the summer, and that gives a conservation pilot the blues...
The Red Desert has immense value for a number of stakeholders including ranchers, historians, archeologists, birders, hunters, geologists, and many others. Currently, our partners at Wyoming Wilderness Association are working to develop consensus on future management for the Red Desert amongst a variety of stakeholders. This work is part of an effort to increase stakeholder communication and consensus that is a key component during the Rock Springs BLM Resource Management Plan Revision and for future congressional protections.
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