Letters of support for continued LWCF funding for land acquisitions in the North Fork canyon are needed. Below, my letter to Congressman John Doolittle. I sent the same letter, only changing the address and salutation etc. as needed, to Senators Barbara Boxer and Dianne Feinstein (each addressed U.S. Senate, Washington, D.C. 20510). The letter is short, and might have been shorter--or longer--but for all its faults I think it is "good enough."
Both Senators, and probably Congressman Doolittle, have email forms for sending letters electronically, on their web sites, if anyone prefers that method. Google their homepages, go there, and click the email link.
March 25, 2004
Congressman John Doolittle
U.S. House of Representatives
Washington, D.C. 20515
re: LWCF funds, North Fork of the American River
Dear Congressman Doolittle:
Please support LWCF funding for Tahoe National Forest's land acquisition efforts in the great canyon of the North Fork American River.
I have hiked this canyon and climbed the peaks surrounding it since 1972. Close to Interstate Highway 80, it is strangely and wonderfully wild and pristine. Its great depth, over 3000 feet for many miles, has protected it from development, from roads, and from logging. Of course it is a Wild & Scenic River, but for my part, I think we should create a North Fork American National Park, from the Sierra Crest near Squaw Valley, all the way down to Colfax.
Due to President Lincoln's railroad land grants, in the 1860s, there are substantial private inholdings within the North Fork canyon. These have largely passed into the ownership of Sierra Pacific Industries, famous for clearcutting. Tahoe National Forest should be applauded for its efforts to protect this remarkable canyon, and be encouraged to continue, and to increase its efforts.
It would be nearly impossible to exaggerate the pressures for development here in Placer County. The parcel of canyon land owned by XYZ lumber company today, may be subdivided into "view" parcels tomorrow. Drastic adverse impacts on some of the most beautiful scenery in California have already occurred. Further land acquisition by Tahoe National Forest will help avert such tragedies, as well as preserve historic public trails in this area, which have routinely suffered closure and obliteration.
Please, Congressman Doolittle, continue to support LWCF funding for the North Fork. We received this precious heritage from our parents; let us bequeath it intact to our children.
Dutch Flat, CA 95714
Thank you all for your consideration of this very important matter.
If only we could secure some LWCF funding for the BLM!