Who's been Nice?

posted Dec 19, 2010, 8:42 AM by Paul Wagner

It's only fair to provide the other list, as well!

Who’s been nice?

10.   Equipment companies who keep making better, lighter, and easier equipment.  Yeah, I know they’re in it for the money.  And some of this stuff isn’t cheap.  But it works, and it does make life on the trail better.

9.  Pack train companies that give a wilderness experience to people who might otherwise never be able to enjoy one.  And yes, they are also on the naughty list…

8.  Anyone else who takes the time to introduce a newbie to the backcountry.  Ya done good.

7.  Scout leaders, both boys and girls, because of the above.  Only they do it for larger groups, and work with kids.  Go figure.

6.  Any organization that works to help protect or preserve our wild lands, from Trout Unlimited and Wild Rivers to the Sierra Club and the Audubon Society.  Thank you.  We may not always agree, but we really appreciate the hard work and the passion.

5.  Any government official or politician who manages to forget, just for one second, about getting re-elected and does something that helps protect or preserve our parks, national forests, and wild lands.  You know who you are…and some of us are keeping score.

4. Our park rangers, forest service employees, and fish and game wardens.  You are underpaid and overworked, but at least not unappreciated—not from our point of view!

3.  Anybody who takes it upon themselves to clean up after someone else in the woods.  Thank you. 

2.  Volunteer trail crews that tackle big problems on their own free time, and seem to think it is a vacation.  I know you get many rewards for this—but let me add one more:  our gratitude.

1.  Ken Burns, for focusing the nation, if only for a few weeks, on the most wonderful national park system in the world.