The richest values of wilderness lie in the future

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Snow on Antelope Island

The richest values of wilderness lie not in the days of Daniel Boone, nor even in the present, but rather in the future. — Aldo Leopold

There are times my mind drifts while I am in the wilderness that I wonder about the about the past, about the people who first explored the very areas that I see in the present with my eyes and then I ponder what their thoughts were when seeing the wild, untamed land. Were they too as struck by the beauty, the strength and the fragility of what they were seeing?

Then there are the times my mind wanders and I wish I could see many of these same areas prior to man’s arrival, to see Lake Bonneville at its highest level or the flooding that it caused when it broke through Red Rock Pass. Or the Colorado River carving out what we know today as the Grand Canyon.

When my mind snaps back to the present I think about the future of the wilderness, the rivers that flow through it and of the birds and wildlife I see and photograph.  Not for me as much as my grandchildren’s grandchildren long after I have permanently laid my gear down and I have concerns about what will be left of the wilderness when they are born. With increasing temperatures that are already damaging the oceans, the soil we stand on and forests that create the oxygen that we breathe can wilderness still survive? Will the wolves and apex predators survive the ignorance of the people who want them permanently exterminated without even considering that those same predators are critical for natural balance?

To be truthful I don’t have time to write each and every one of my concerns for the future of the wilderness areas I love and enjoy here on my blog.


Every day scientists, conservationists and nature lovers are speaking up. Our numbers are growing and we are an increasing force to be reckoned with. We make our concerns heard and if we do that long enough and loud enough there is hope that there will be wilderness in the future.

Some of the actions taken today are monumental for the survival of the wilderness for instance blocking the Keystone XL Pipeline which has the potential for causing environmental destruction far beyond the physical area where they want to lay that pipe down.

Every voice matters.

For the future of our wilderness and this planet.



  1. Utahbooklover November 9, 2014 at 6:22 pm

    Your sometimes wish to visit the past before man came to me as I sat on my front porch and looked up at the clearly visible ancient remains of the shoreline of Lake Bonneville. It was massive and the flood must have been terrific, to pick just one of your examples. Yes, slow progress on the environmental front seems to rule and I do worry about the negative impact of that 2000-mile Keystone pipeline. The future is in our hands!

  2. Kathie November 9, 2014 at 1:29 pm

    Mia, you are so right and I am so concerned about the XL Pipeline since the Republicans have taken over the Senate! Sometimes it feels so hopeless and I wonder if we will ever be able to preserve the wilderness and wildlife we all love. Thank you for trying. I keep trying too. Your photos show the beauty we will all lose if we do not stand up and defend it! I love the photo at the top of this post. As always, you make me long for Utah and Idaho!

  3. SkyHawker4 November 9, 2014 at 1:10 pm

    Yes improved and implemented steps going forward with the dedication of many will restore our future envioronment. Small steps and big steps, they all count.
    Starts with each one of us. :>)

  4. Elephant's Child November 9, 2014 at 12:01 pm

    Sometims I despair. Often I despair. Short termed greed seems so often to trump the long term view where our environment is concerned. But you are right, there is a groundswell of voices speaking up. And it is growing.

  5. Jolanta November 9, 2014 at 5:35 am

    That is true, thank you.

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