Follow by Email

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Barron Basin and the effects of the 1872 Mining Law

Rainy day today, good for reading hiking guides like "100 Hikes in Washington's North Cascades National Park Region" by long-time NCCC leader Harvey Manning. His description of hiking the PCT north from Hart's Pass includes this (p. 203)
Barron Basin is one of the most magnificent family-accessible family glorylands in the Cascades, but it is mainly "private property" and the "owners" have raised havoc, gouging delicate meadows with bulldozers, dumping garbage at will. This hike is bound to convert any casual walker into a fierce enemy of the ultra-permissive Federal mining laws, which make it next to impossible for the Forest Service to protect the land. Some of the desecration is very new, but much is a century old - note how long Nature needs to restore revaged meadows.
Another guidebook author notes the situation here, though it appears he hasn't experienced the same level of epiphany that Harvey did.

The 1872 Mining Law is notorious. Familiarize yourself with it here, and work toward ending its carte blanche for destruction of our unprotected wild public lands!

No comments: