While I’m sure the Telluride Ski Co. proposal to offer guiding skiing in Bear Creek has brought out the whole gamut of opinions, it was the quote in The Watch newspaper article by Sheep Mountain Alliance’s Hillary White that really set me off.
Ms. White was quoted as saying “Any additional people in that area, whether guided by so-called professionals or not, add to the danger of those who enjoy the quiet, backcountry solitude of recreating in those lands.” There is your classic example of “Not in my backyard; I have mine now, keep out; I was the last local to move here” attitude. This coming from the so-called steward of the wilderness movement. Ms. White’s statement of “…whether guided by so-called professionals or not…” gives clear indication that she wants no more people in “her backyard.” She is not concerned with the “commercialization” of Bear Creek; she just doesn’t want anyone else to enjoy it, no matter how they get there. Get real. We live in a resort area that caters to bringing in more people to enjoy our little slice of heaven. The world is growing, as are the users and the conflicts on all public lands due to people who think that only they should be able to recreate there in only their way and voila! – you have a Wilderness Bill. Personally, I think I would rather have a guided group above me in Bear Creek that can make protocol decisions as opposed to some of the other yahoos that ski there.
I believe Ms. White’s real motivation behind the opposition to the Bear Creek proposal and the pushing of the wilderness bill is to keep as many people as possible out of her and the vocal minority’s favorite areas. She needs to understand the reality of The Public and Friends Using Their Public Lands, or go find her very own private bought-and-paid-for slice of heaven and fence out the “undesirables.”
I only hope Senator Salazar and the rest of Congress see through this charade and kill the Wilderness Bill before we are all excluded from using our Public Lands in appropriate manners.
– Russ Montgomery
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