Designated Wilderness areas in Montana comprise 3.75% of the state landmass or approximately 1,100,000 acres of land that provides recreation for Montana residents and visitors from afar. Hiking, backpacking, camping, horseback riding, hunting and fishing are allowed in the Wilderness areas. Motorized or other mechanical uses are not allowed and mountain biking is restricted from the Wilderness areas.
I just finished reading the article in “Rural Montana” on Steve Daines. He loves to come home from Washington, D.C. to hike and recreate in the Bozeman area almost every weekend. As so many Montanans and visitors, he appreciates the beauty that the natural wilderness areas provide. Unfortunately, the “Montana Sportsmen Act” sponsored by Daines removes protection of over 100,000 acres of proposed Wilderness designated Wildlands. Most Montanans do not support the attempt to strip protection of these areas. As Montana grows, the valley floors are denuded of trees and vegetation as they are filled with buildings, street lights and metal storage facilities. People move here to escape the urban centers for the beauty of the Montana land and sky. It is ever more critical to preserve the wild lands and natural areas for future generations to enjoy. I encourage other Montanans to write to Steve Daines and to offer their support for protection of Wilderness lands in Montana and urge him to work with other parties to protect these wild lands.
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