Happy Birthday to Smokey the Bear the mascot of the United States Forest Service. Smokey was a bear cub found in a tree with burned paws and singed fur from a wildfire. He became the living mascot and lived for 26 years in Washington D.C.
Celebrate National Bison Day with a virtual bison hunt through the National Archives Catalog!
Help to transcribe and tag vintage Forest Service bison photos in the National Archives Catalog. This easy transcription mission will help make these images more accessible and searchable for researchers and the public.
The United States system of federally managed public lands is a true democratic wonder. We do not turn people away who can’t afford to recreate here. Unlike in some European countries, parks and forest preserves are not just for the elite. They are for everyone. The photos that appear on my Tumblr dashboard daily are often taken in these public lands. The photos I post are also mostly taken there.
Now, in this time of shrinking budgets and fear mongering about “federal government overreach”, states are introducing legislation (sometimes not so overt) to try to gain control of your national forests, parks, and federally managed land. While on paper, they claim they will increase access, and local control/management sounds good, there are other things at work.
Recently in Idaho and Utah, tracts of state land were sold off to the highest bidder which created private property out of public land. In the federal system, you would have a say in that. In the state system, you do not unless you’re a resident of that state. Further, state control of lands means easier permitting for oil, gas, coal, unsustainable logging practices, and other extractive industries. It means the end of federal Wilderness protection for places like my beloved Wind River Range.
In Wyoming, there are several current measures introduced to the legislature that explore the option of a land grab. They use interesting language in their propaganda. They say they want public land turned back over to the states as if it was taken from them. In truth, Yellowstone was a National Park before Wyoming was a state. Further, states lack the capacity and budget to adequately manage them. In a big fire year, states would bankrupt quickly or require federal aid to assist with fire management.
There are many things about a Trump presidency I vow to fight against, but this new Sagebrush Rebellion is the one I will fight against the most. I hope you choose to fight for whatever matters most to you. Write your congressmen and women at both the state and federal level. Make calls. Do it for the places you love so you can show your kids someday.
Keep public lands in public lands. We already own it. Sure, go #FindYourPark, but then make sure it stays yours.
Spec. posters we made for United States National Forests featuring an iconic tree from each. More to come! And yes, for you outdoorsy types, we do take requests.
By the way, if you have a free day visit your local forest! For us locals the closest one is Angeles National Forest, and especially since we live in such a ridiculous metropolis, its a refreshing escape and a stark contrast to life here (fishing, hiking, camping, swimming and boating on Elizabeth Lake, the works!).
#GivingBack: A Look Behind The Scenes – Meet the Crew that Keeps Our Firefighters Going
In the small town of Fort Klamath, Oregon, a unique group of youth gathered under a bright yellow tent at the High Cascades Complex fire camp. The wildfire, ignited by lightning, burned from August through October 2017 west of Crater Lake, Oregon. The youth are members of the Boxelder Job Corp Group based out of South Dakota. The youth come from all over the world including Congo, Ethiopia, Thailand and Kenya.
As a reward for their high performance in school, the Jobs Corps invited these youth to participate in its summer program. The team traveled to wildfires across the United States to support wildland firefighters from the Bureau of Land Management and other agencies.
Prometheus was the oldest known non-clonal organism, a Great Basin Bristlecone Pine tree growing near the tree line on Wheeler Peak in eastern Nevada, United States. The tree, which was at least 4862 years old and possibly more than 5000, was cut down in 1964 by a graduate student and United States Forest Service personnel for research purposes. (Source)