July 14, 2011 in Letters, Opinion

Protect Clearwater country

 

At 260,000 acres, the Weitas Creek roadless area is the lifeblood of all things wild on the Clearwater National Forest. Situated to the north of the Lolo motorway and to the west of Kelly Creek, this vast landscape is drained by Weitas Creek and Cayuse Creek, the latter a blue-ribbon fishery with native west-slope cutthroat and bull trout swimming through its waters.

This low- to mid-elevation forest provides crucial calving grounds for Rocky Mountain elk herds. With close to 19,000 acres of winter range, this roadless area also provides some of the most productive ungulate habitat in the state of Idaho. If the Idaho Fish & Game Department is anxious to restore the herds, they should get behind the campaign to designate Weitas as wilderness. Scapegoating wolves for being wolves is a broken record.

Unfortunately the Clearwater Basin Collaborative could put places like the Weitas Creek, Fish-Hungery Creek and Meadow Creek roadless areas on the chopping block. It’s important to point out that the Idaho Conservation League, which hasn’t said peep to defend the Lochsa from the megaloads, are sitting at this poker table. People should start questioning their position on protecting Clearwater country.

Brett Haverstick

Moscow, Idaho


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