This past week our @mypubliclands Instagram account shared photos of and from BLM firefighters - we are beyond thankful for their hard-work and service! Thanks for following this week and learning more about NIFC.

View the NIFC roadtrip journal-storymap here:

My class was having a fight about racism and one of them is a magahead and one them is a coffeeshop feminist and another is entitled BLMer and have you ever just wanted to drown yourself in lava because I sure do.


BLM educates Scouts at National Jamboree

Story by Walker A. Willis, Eagle Scout. Photos by BLM.

Before volunteering with the BLM at the National Boy Scouts of America Jamboree, I had never heard of the BLM. Doug Blankinship, BLM Eastern States Volunteer and Partnerships Coordinator and member of the Hornaday Award Committee, was the one to review my volunteer application and asked if I would be interested in helping out at the event. Since I had I invested over 2,000 hours in conservation projects in my quest to earn the William T. Hornaday silver medal (the most distinguished in Scouting for exceptional conservation service), he thought I would be a good fit for the team.

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The Perseid Meteor Shower didn’t disappoint last night in Utah’s Valley of the Gods, where 500+ foot rock spires offered a great foreground.  BLMer Bob Wick took the starry photo of the area last night and the day shots earlier in the week. A scenic loop tour travels through the spectacular sandstone formations – accessible to a passenger car in dry conditions.  #weekendinspiration

BlackLivesMatter and the black body problem

You may have noticed BLM likes to talk about “black bodies”. Why?

1. It makes you think of dead black people. One BLMer claimed that what happened to Korryn Gaines is what happens to “black bodies not in compliance”.
2. It implies that the cops only see bodies, not people. Dehumanizing.
3. It’s about victimhood. Bodies are just things. Bodies can’t make choices. That’s what people do.

And when there’s a cop on one side and a body on the other, it clearly wasn’t the body’s fault, right? As opposed to a cop on one side and a dead person on the other.

Actually, you’ll see this with any victim narrative. People ignore how the “victim” may have made choices to bring themselves harm. On some level, if they admit the victim had responsibility, they can’t be a victim. Which doesn’t make logical sense, but there you go.

Take Gaines. Woman with long history of hating cops. When they show up to serve a traffic citation, no answer when they knock, they get the landlord to let them in, she’s there with a shotgun pointed at them. After several hours of negotiation, she gets shot and her kid gets wounded.

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#traveltuesday – beautiful new shots from Moab taken last weekend by BLMer Bob Wick.

Corona Arch in Utah is a free standing arch with a 140 by 105 foot opening. Corona and adjoining Bowtie Arch are a popular hike located just 20 minutes from Moab.  The 1.5 mile trail climbs 400 feet. Note that there are two short stretches of steeper slick rock, but cables and footholds are provided.

The Highway 128 corridor follows the Colorado River corridor through slick rock canyons east of Moab. The area is a recreation mecca with a paved bike trail (western part of the corridor), numerous campgrounds, trails, and flatwater boating opportunities. About 30 miles east of Moab, the canyon opens up into Castle Valley with its numerous spectacular rock formations – including Fisher Towers. The towers are renowned as photo subjects and  also provide for challenging rock climbs.  The BLM provides a picnic site at the base of the towers and a 2.2 mile trail offers close up views.  A definite bucket list location!


Ending the day with a few colorful sunrise shots from Slinkard Wilderness Study Area in California - taken by BLMer Bob Wick this morning. The view - from a 9,000 foot peak just south of Monitor Pass - looks towards Topaz Lake, Nevada. A different perspective of Nevada for our #mypubliclandsroadtrip.

Although the winter had record low precipitation levels in the Sierra, moisture in late spring and summer has resulted in a good wildflower bloom. A note from Bob: I not adjust the color saturation on this; it was just one of those “saturated” mornings!


It doesn’t get much better than colorful skies over the rugged mountains of New Mexico.  

The White Mesa Trail system offers amazing scenery and an array of challenging single track for intermediate to advanced riders.  The photo from the top of the mesa looks towards Albuquerque and Sandia Peak in the background. After a group of thunderstorms rolled through the area last night, the almost full moon broke through the pink clouds just after sunset.

The hoodoo shot from Ojito Wilderness is an easy ¾ mile hike from the trailhead along Cabezon Road.  The trail is marked with cairns and ascends a gradual grade to two areas of hoodoos backed by colorful mesas and twisted ponderosa pines.

Both areas are located about 45 minutes from Albuquerque and offer outstanding recreation opportunities close to town.

New photos by BLMer Bob Wick.


Mesas and canyons, cholla and barrel cactus, sky and springs, peace and quiet.

This is Warm Springs Wilderness. The 112,400-acre Wilderness is located in Mohave County, 30 miles southwest of Kingman, Arizona and 30 miles north of Lake Havasu City, Arizona. The Warm Springs Wilderness encircles an immense and pristine desert landscape. One thousand feet above the surrounding desert, the 10-mile long Black Mesa dominates the Wilderness. Its edges are dissected into a maze of winding canyons. Remnant mesas and isolated hills dot a vast encircling alluvial apron.The diverse zoologic and geologic features offer outstanding opportunities for primitive recreation. Water at Warm Springs and other springs allow for extended camping trips. Horseback riding and hiking are further enhanced by the presence of an old historic trail and numerous burro trails. In the spring following a wet winter, this area unveils a notably colorful wildflower display, including ocotillos, blooming annuals, shrubs, and cactus.

Happy Wilderness Wednesday! Photos by BLMer Justin Robbins.


Thanks to @cynrk for the note about Arizona’s birthday!

While younger than Oregon (statehood in 1912), equally amazing in very different ways.  Our post highlights some of the most interesting things about BLM Arizona public lands - petroglyphs, unique wildlife, cool cactus and other plants, out-of-this world geologic formations and so much more.  A lot to love about Arizona on Valentine’s Day.

Photos by BLMer Bob Wick


Meet BLM Idaho River Ranger Evan Worthington on Today’s #conservationlands15 Social Media Takeover!

Evan Worthington grew up on a 100+ acre farm in West Virginia, where the New River flowed less than a mile away. For Evan, a career in the outdoors was a given. 

At the age of 18, Evan became a commercial whitewater river guide along the New and Gauley Rivers. Ten years later, in 1995, he packed up the VW van and headed west for something different. Evan found a new home when the old VW broke down in Idaho (he’s been in Idaho ever since).  

Evan’s passion for the river and artistic talent came together in Idaho as he established county programs to educate teens about the environment and the arts.   Also at this time, he became a seasonal river ranger on the BLM’s Lower Salmon River in Cottonwood, Idaho. Evan even used a BLM Take It Outside grant to develop a high school whitewater program called the Salmon Surfers, with Leave No Trace, safety and hands-on water instruction. 

Evan is now a permanent wilderness/river ranger in the Owyhee Canyonlands of the BLM’s Boise District.  He runs the stunning Bruneau-Jarbidge Wild and Scenic River System, with its nearly 40 miles of designated wild and scenic river sections. And Evan shares the wild and scenic river with local youth, visitors, and most important, his wife and two daughters.   


The Continental Divide National Scenic Trail was designated for its scenic significance. It is also considered the ‘King of Trails’, more difficult than its sister long distance trails, the Appalachian and Pacific Crest. It navigates dramatically diverse ecosystems through mountain meadows, granite peaks, and high-desert surroundings. Upon designation in 1978, Congress identified a corridor for this trail, straddling along the backbone of the North American continent –the Divide– for the future placement of the trail. When complete, the trail will climb and descend the peaks and cross the high-deserts of the Rocky Mountains from Canada to Mexico for 3,100 miles.

The trail crosses BLM-managed lands in five states: Colorado, Idaho, Montana, New Mexico and Wyoming. 

Photos by BLMer Bob Wick.


From our family to yours – mom and BLMer Rachel Sowards Thompson shares one of her family favorites on today’s #mypubliclandsroadtrip!

“As a mother, I love weekends hiking or camping in the King Range National Conservation Area with my boys (ages 1 ½ and 3 ½). We also love to bring along our neighbors girls (ages 8 and 12) to add some extra adventure.

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Fight Fire With BLM! 

The Fire and Aviation program is a diverse, professional organization dedicated to providing national direction, leadership, policy, standards, and operational oversight. Fire and Aviation works with state and field offices to ensure a safe, cost effective and efficient fire and aviation management program in support of the national Bureau of Land Management (BLM) mission.

The BLM, a leader in our nation’s wildland fire management efforts, undertakes a broad range of activities to safely protect the public, the natural landscape, wildlife habitat and recreational areas for our country’s citizens. The program includes fire suppression, preparedness, predictive services, fuels management, fire planning, community assistance and protection, prevention and education, and perhaps most significant, safety. The BLM meets these challenges by fielding highly trained and skilled professional firefighters and managers.

If you like remote and rugged conditions, extended travel and overnight camping, then becoming a wildland firefighter may be for you. Hiring season is here an the BLM is looking for temporary employees to work on wildland firefighting crews for the 2016 fire season. The BLM is also seeking veterans interested in joining wildland firefighting crews. The BLM hosts fire crews in six states that are specifically designed and configured to employ veterans and provide career opportunities in fire and other land management careers.

Visit to learn more.


A little Monday motivation from your public lands – snow dusts falls over the Eastern Sierra. BLMer Bob Wick took these photos of Bodie Hills Wilderness and Conway Summit in BLM California several years ago.  Some of our favorite photos of the area!  #SeeBLM


This Travel Tuesday, Take a Hike among Saguaro at the Sonoran Desert National Monument in Arizona.

The Sonoran Desert National Monument, a part of the BLM’s National Conservation Lands, contains more than 487,000 acres of Sonoran Desert landscape. In the most biologically diverse of the North American deserts, the Sonoran Desert National Monument includes an extensive saguaro cactus forest and three distinct mountain ranges - the Maricopa, Sand Tank, and Table Top Mountains. The monument is also home to three congressionally-designated wilderness areas, many significant archaeological and historic sites, and remnants of several important historic trails.

Photos by BLMer Bob Wick


Happy St. Patrick’s Day! 

On your public lands, the #goldisinthegreen: BLMer Ryan O’Dell shares wildflowers bordering the western edge of the San Joaquin Valley in Central California. According to the Hollister Field Office Botanist, this year has been one of the most productive years for wildflowers since 2010. 


The 27,660-acre Mount Nutt Wilderness is located in Mohave County, 15 miles west of Kingman, Arizona and 12 miles east of Bullhead City, Arizona.

This wilderness encompasses an eight-mile-long stretch of the central (and highest) portion of the Black Mountains. Nutt Mountain, at 5,216 feet, presides over a colorful and wild terrain. Along the main ridgeline, prominent mesas have been cut into a series of steep maze-like canyons. Outward from the main ridgeline, numerous huge volcanic plugs ring the entire Wilderness.

Scattered springs sustain small oases of large cottonwoods, willows, and oaks. Hiking, camping, hunting, photography, and rock scrambling opportunities are varied and challenging.

BLMer Justin Robbins said, “This maze of mesas, mountains, canyons and cliffs provides habitat for desert bighorn sheep and a wilderness sanctuary for people.”  

Photos by BLMer Justin Robbins