Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Extreme Greens: Take a hike! Don't mess with Green Mountain

As a cradle conservationist, I have three unfriendly words of advice to environmental absolutists from Wilderness Watch: Take a hike! The Montana-based group has gone to federal court in a bid to destroy a newly rebuilt lookout atop Green Mountain, in the Glacier Peak Wilderness Area, where thousands of hikers trek during summer months to enjoy a 360-degree view of the North Cascades. As the Herald of Everett reported Saturday, the group wants the Forest Service to tear down the new $50,000 lookout because they say it violates the Wilderness Act. And pay attorney's fees. Wilderness Watch is also complaining that the U.S. Forest Service used a helicopter and did not first prepare an analysis of the impacts of constructing a new lookout. Huh? The worst excesses of absolutist, tone-deaf, keep-everybody-out-but-us environmentalism are on display in this lawsuit. Writer and environmental activist Peter Jackson, whose father, Sen. Henry Jackson, wrote legislation that established the Glacier Peak Wilderness, describes the plaintiffs as "a tone-deaf advocacy group skilled at alienating current (and future) wilderness boosters."...more

So the greenies don't like it when a structure they use is challenged by a wilderness group. They don't want to amend the Wilderness Act, they just want a different interpretation for facilities they support, even if they violate the Act itself.

According to Wilderness Watch the FS used helicopters and power tools to resurrect the structure which has not been used as a lookout since the 70s and is instead a visitors center. WW also points out "FS officials plotted it in private, avoiding public process or participation, thinking they might sneak their unlawful activities under the radar."

Contrast this with the Monte Wolf Cabin where the FS has sent it's own employees hither to tear down parts of the cabin and the then FS Supervisor is quoted as saying "The Monte Wolfe cabin is offensive to anyone that truly values wilderness."

A cabin owned by a private foundation is "offensive" but a lookout tower used as a plaything by the FS is just fine in a Wilderness area.

Think of the Wilderness Act's language on solitude and naturalness, and then take a look at the new lookout tower:

Smokey says "Wilderness is good for thee but not for me."

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