Sept. 20, 2006
Contact: Brian O’Donnell
DURANGO, Colo —Trout Unlimited commended today’s U.S. District Court decision to reinstate protections for 58.5 million acres of National Forest roadless lands.
“Protecting roadless areas is vital to conserving fish and wildlife habitat and for providing clean water in our streams,” said Jack Williams, Trout Unlimited's Senior Scientist and former Forest Supervisor on Rogue River and Siskiyou National Forests. “The scientific consensus on the values of roadless areas is clear. It’s a great victory to have the federal courts reinstate protection for these national assets.”
In recent years, Trout Unlimited has rallied anglers, hunters, and outfitters to participate in efforts to conserve America’s remaining roadless areas.
“This is great news for sportsmen,” said Mike Beagle, an avid hunter and fisherman and Trout Unlimited’s Oregon and Washington field representative. “Hunters and anglers value intact backcountry roadless areas because they provide important fish and wildlife habitat, and outstanding hunting and fishing opportunities. It’s important to note that this decision won’t close any existing roads, it will simply keep the land like it is, without new roads damaging the backcountry.”
“I hike and fish in the Hermosa Creek roadless area north of Durango, and plan to hunt elk there in October. It’s great to know that this area is once again safeguarded.” said Brian O’Donnell, Trout Unlimited’s Public Lands Initiative Director.
Trout Unlimited produced scientifically-based reports for Alaska, Colorado, Wyoming, Idaho and Oregon demonstrating the value of roadless areas for fish and wildlife and hunting and fishing. The reports can be found at: http://www.tu.org/roadless
Trout Unlimited is North America’s leading coldwater fisheries conservation organization, with 160,000 members dedicated to the protection and restoration of trout and salmon fisheries and their watersheds.