Wilderness isn’t necessary to catch a fish or bag a deer, but it certainly makes the experience a whole lot better when we can completely disconnect from the outside world and fully be in nature. Protecting wilderness areas ensures that new generations of outdoors enthusiasts will be able to experience their favorite activities in there purists forms.
Our pilot gone, my two companions and I lugged our rafting gear on makeshift stretchers to our launch on the Middle Fork of the Flathead River. It was one of the finest fishing trips of my life, pursuing native westslope cutthroat trout in the Bob Marshall Wilderness Complex.
Since Theodore Roosevelt wrote The Wilderness Hunter in 1893, American hunters and anglers have been in the debate about Wilderness. This continues today as the US Senate recently passed Senate Bill 47, which would protect an additional million acres in California, Oregon, Utah, and New Mexico as Wilderness.
Which raises the question: what does Wilderness mean for today’s hunters and anglers?