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reveal_wildlife[1]It's a wonderful idea: Burt's Bees founder wants to donate national park. Roxanne Quimby, cofounder of Burt's Bees and a longtime Maine resident, has been purchasing land in Maine' inland forests for years.  Now she wants to give 70,000 wild acres adjacent to Baxter State Park to the National Park Service for a national park, and another 30,000 acres for a national preserve (which would be more friendly to hunters, snowmobilers, and other outdoor enthusiasts).

If she can win support - and an important note on that below the fold - the gift would be timed with the National Park Service's 100th anniversary in 2016. has been advocating a Maine North Woods National Park for some time, as have I. (Note that Restore's vision of 3.2 million acres, larger than Yellowstone, is substantially larger than the 100,000 acres Quimby proposes donating.) The National Park Service favors the idea:

The Park Service is intrigued by Quimby's idea, especially since it believes the Northeast is underserved. The last time a large national park was created was in Alaska in the 1980s during the Carter administration.
"The National Park Service would like to see additional opportunities for preserving these beautiful places and creating recreational opportunities in the Northeast," said spokesman David Barna. "The proposal would be exciting for the National Park Service to evaluate."
A National Parks Conservation Association poll found strong support for a Maine Woods National Park. And national parks are economic engines, with gateway communities (e.g., West Yellowstone) far outperforming the United States as a whole in job growth, personal income growth, and population growth.

The heart of the Maine woods, 10 million acres, is the largest undeveloped land east of the Rockies.  Some logging has occurred; Quimby's 100,000 acres are covered with saplings, recovering from logging operations that ended five years ago. Nevertheless, moose, endangered Canada lynx, coyotes, and snowshoe hares make their homes in the forest.

What's needed to accept this gift proposal? National parks don't get created without the consent of the senators from the affected state. Both Olympia Snowe and Susan Collins are moderate Republicans with some interest in environmental issues. Both can win the support of Maine voters of all stripes - moderates and independents included - by supporting a Maine Woods National Park.

Originally posted to Public Lands on Sun Mar 27, 2011 at 12:14 PM PDT.

Also republished by J Town, National Parks and Wildlife Refuges, and Park Avenue.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip canteen? (163+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    John DE, Polly Syllabic, Rhysling, Pinko Elephant, gchaucer2, Thestral, lissablack, b00g13p0p, Stranded Wind, palantir, ban nock, JimWilson, dance you monster, craigkg, concerned, wide eyed lib, kevinpdx, antooo, greengemini, cosette, jlms qkw, BachFan, ksingh, Lefty Coaster, ontheleftcoast, Lorinda Pike, Snud, belinda ridgewood, sceptical observer, tin woodswoman, elziax, urbazewski, commonmass, wilderness voice, Involuntary Exile, srkp23, jacey, maybeeso in michigan, Sacramento Dem, marleycat, NoMoreLies, 42, panicbean, Dom9000, BlueJessamine, blueoregon, regis, KayCeSF, BennyToothpick, profewalt, Onomastic, WI Deadhead, Uberbah, terabytes, expatjourno, NorthCountryNY, carolyn urban, vinylgirl, Only Needs a Beat, jethrock, begone, tgypsy, atlliberal, furi kuri, Eileen B, bythesea, bsmechanic, Simplify, hubcap, journeyman, happymisanthropy, McGirk, JanF, Karl Rover, cville townie, riverlover, badger, marina, LaughingPlanet, Bill in Portland Maine, ninkasi23, Dallasdoc, itzik shpitzik, damfino, glattonfolly, Hedwig, ccasas, Dvalkure, flowerfarmer, greenchiledem, geebeebee, doinaheckuvanutjob, asterkitty, Julie Gulden, GreyHawk, Amber6541, cpresley, DvCM, reflectionsv37, Parthenia, Nulwee, skybluewater, Crazy like a fox, tmo, kaliope, eeff, Goobergunch, ItsSimpleSimon, emal, pat bunny, Patric Juillet, Vacationland, Habitat Vic, elwior, kerflooey, boran2, Rich in PA, kaleidescope, TBug, BobBlueMass, nemoplanetia, Seamus D, TheFatLadySings, Clytemnestra, Marjmar, Debbie in ME, Gowrie Gal, rambler american, Nowhere Man, Wolf10, BleacherBum153, Susipsych, Milly Watt, denise b, matching mole, Isara, UTvoter, jennifree2bme, XajaX, Susan from 29, MeToo, Scioto, leevank, Magnifico, Regina in a Sears Kit House, Ana Thema, greycat, DWG, fizziks, verasoie, ScottyUrb, davybaby, mph2005, newshound, bobdevo, BarackStarObama, No Preference, petral, Senor Unoball, SJerseyIndy, willyr, Phoenix Rising, ivorybill

    A personal note: in 2009 I started off writing a series on Healthy Minds, Healthy Bodies, which morphed into Hike On!, covering outdoor adventures in national parks and similar places. A turning point came when advocating for a national monument on the San Rafael Swell, a Utah rocky desert so alien to habitable land that it's used in Mars simulations; I learned that Rob Bishop (R-UT-01) is vehemently opposed to making it a national monument because of oil shale believed to be underground. My Hike On! series became more political.  With DK4, I'm now publishing appropriate diaries through the Public Lands group, dedicated to the politics of our public lands.  A less overtly political group, Park Avenue, focuses on travel to national parks.

    Join/follow Climate Hawks and Public Lands; @RL_Miller

    by RLMiller on Sun Mar 27, 2011 at 12:13:07 PM PDT

  •  What an incredible gift! (48+ / 0-)

    And thank god it is to the National Park Service rather than the State Parks -- LePage would move the land to his Department of McMansion Development.

    I'm a total crank about snowmobiles -- I'd like to see them banned in National and State Parks.  I feel the same about jetskis --I'd like to see them banned period.  Air and noise pollution.

    " My faith in the Constitution is whole; it is complete; it is total." Barbara Jordan, 1974

    by gchaucer2 on Sun Mar 27, 2011 at 12:35:15 PM PDT

    •  I'm the same about mountain bikes and dogs (14+ / 0-)

      killing ground nesting song bird, chasing game, tearing up trails, bringing hi tech machines into nature.

      I like wilderness as it keeps them out.

      "Don't fall or we both go." Derek Hersey 1957-1993

      by ban nock on Sun Mar 27, 2011 at 12:47:23 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Hikers should welcome Mt. Bikes & LEASHED pets (17+ / 0-)

        in many less sensitive areas.  Having two groups of stakeholders working TOGETHER to preserve wilderness is just good politics.  Non-motorized user groups would be much better off joining forces rather than fighting one another IMHO.

        "We do not inherit the Earth from our Ancestors, we borrow it from our Children"

        by Lefty Coaster on Sun Mar 27, 2011 at 01:07:10 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I welcome all users of public land in their proper (8+ / 0-)

          place, ATVs, snowmobiles, jeeps, Winebagos, fishermen, photographers, and yes mountain bikers. There are different designations though for different types of land. Wilderness has special rules to protect it.

          Ski resorts however..... not into extraction industries either.

          "Don't fall or we both go." Derek Hersey 1957-1993

          by ban nock on Sun Mar 27, 2011 at 02:06:20 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Limiting constituency for wilderness to hikers (7+ / 0-)

            means less wilderness will be created, because you're pitting non-motorized user groups against one another.

            Myself I'd rather have more Wilderness, that's open to more non-motorized users, than less Wilderness open only to hikers and hunters.

            "We do not inherit the Earth from our Ancestors, we borrow it from our Children"

            by Lefty Coaster on Sun Mar 27, 2011 at 02:16:33 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  You should work to keep any area from becoming (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:

              designated Wilderness.

              Because the rule is consistant throughout.

              There are many, many different users of wilderness, campers and backpackers spring to mind immediately, I'd guess they are the largest user groups by population. Often people participate i more than one activity per use, like birdwatching and photography, and camping, all on the same trip.

              Off to the municipal park now so my kids play.

              "Don't fall or we both go." Derek Hersey 1957-1993

              by ban nock on Sun Mar 27, 2011 at 02:24:52 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

          •  Then don't expect (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            No one gets out alive, Seamus D

            mountain bikers and anyone else who should be in their "proper place" to support any more wilderness.

            The problem is this: most of the wilderness bills which actually get passed are very reasonable and balanced. National Recreation Areas and Scenic Areas have often been used to keep areas which are good for mt. biking and other rec uses, and have historically been used for such, open for those uses. But the wilderness lobby keeps pushing for more areas, so what they don't get this time, they'll push for next time. And their proposals are often anything but reasonable and balanced, and user groups in many areas are getting pretty tired of repeatedly having to go up against groups they should be able to work with more amicably.

            I've also read proposals over the years from some of the wilderness advocacy groups which say things like "don't make this an NRA, because that will invite people to go there for recreation". It is clear to me that these advocacy groups often concentrate people who would rather just keep use of public land to a minimum entirely. It's up to everyone else to go up against them, and frankly, I don't see why anyone else would be willing to continue working with the advocacy groups that start with an uncompromising position and take an adversarial tack to any other use over a wide area.

            Time after time, mountain bike advocates have had to keep their legislators informed of what recreation activities are already common in an area, because the legislators are starting with overdone proposals from the wilderness lobby and then whittling them down in response to other groups and lobbies complaining about them. The latest proposals from the wilderness lobby in Oregon and Montana, for instance, were trash which paid no heed to any other interests. In Virginia and Colorado, among others, the final proposals which were written into law were much more reasonable, but I don't know how they compared to the original proposals or what changes were made in between.

            The wilderness lobby groups would get a lot more sympathy from mountain bikers and other users if they did not assume, in many cases, that these users are adversaries of what they are trying to do. Some of them already do, but a lot of the discussions and compromises should be understood better by the lobbies in advance so they don't have to be made every time with the legislators.

            "Right now, you have been convicted of as many counts of treason as Manning." -- wiscmass. (Yes, you.)

            by cville townie on Sun Mar 27, 2011 at 02:50:46 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  I don't see why you and 4 wheelers need the most (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Seamus D

              ecologically sensitive areas that are reserved for wildlife and nature to go tearing up with tires. BLM and national forests are vast.

              I notice lately even in areas of National Forest bikes and ATVs are restricted to designated trails. I'd say moving in the direction of more preservation rather than less is the way to go. Historical uses also include clear cutting, strip mining, oil extraction. We need to move beyond destroying mother nature.

              "Don't fall or we both go." Derek Hersey 1957-1993

              by ban nock on Sun Mar 27, 2011 at 04:09:18 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Nobody who is reasonable (0+ / 0-)

                is advocating using bikes or ATVs aside from on trails which are suitable for that purpose. The only questions are, what constitutes a trail, how many of them there can be, and in what kinds of places.

                The national forests are vast, but in a not insignificant number of cases, wilderness lobbies have included areas with a large amount of legitimate, existing bike use for inclusion in wilderness, and it's a recurring fight to keep that area designated in a way that allows that use. Oregon is an especially good example of how not to do it; Oregon Wild was fundraising at (road and urban) bike races on one hand, without being fully honest about their intentions, and on the other hand had nearly no communication with the bike groups, and no consideration of reasonable and existing uses of the land in their proposals.

                In my state, Virginia, I don't even know what the position of the wilderness lobby is on keeping good areas available for bike use which have proven their worth for such use. The coalitions which form to actually pursue each piece of legislation do usually include bike and other users as representatives, but if I donated to the actual wilderness lobby rather than the ad-hoc coalitions, I don't know that money wouldn't be used against us, especially having watched these fights happen in other states. So I'd rather just give to and support the mountain bike groups even though I don't disagree with most of what the wilderness lobby is trying to do. In a way, that's a shame.

                And mountain bikes, operated on established trails which are not muddy or washed out, don't tear up the landscape nearly as much as ATVs or motorized dirt bikes. This is not to say it's appropriate to operate them everywhere, even on trails. Even ATV users deserve a fair shake, even though I would agree that offroad use is almost never appropriate; I remember a few years back a segment on 60 Minutes which pit them and local wilderness advocates against Carole King over Idaho wilderness. The local wilderness advocates were fine with allowing a limited number of existing roads on NF land to continue to be maintained and used by ATVs, but a handful of advocates from out of state wanted a big fight over that.

                Plenty of wilderness advocates understand the different designations and are willing to use them reasonably, but those that don't have given the whole system a bad reputation. In Colorado this past election season, an astroturf group was formed to represent an ostensibly wide coalition of users who would be affected by a proposed wilderness designation. Among other things, they claimed mountain bikers would be excluded from a large amount of existing use by a bill proposed by John Salazar (the ex-congressman from CO-03, not the senator). In fact this was simply not the case; the bill had been negotiated reasonably, and the group was largely a front for mining interests and Tipton's campaign. This still allowed the group to successfully scare people into voting for Tipton, which helped defeat Salazar for re-election. If people had researched this, it would have made for a more informed vote, but just looking at some of the things that happened in other states, the argument was believable.

                The attitude you have expressed that mt. bikers would be better off just keeping areas from becoming wilderness is overly hostile. In fact, mt. bikers have had a lot of success compromising on areas that are less sensitive and more suitable for bikes, but the wilderness advocates have often not been very willing to work directly, so the process has largely worked through legislators as an intermediate. Again, this varies from state to state and group to group. Some have played nice, some haven't. I won't criticize those that have, but in most cases I just don't know without information that can only be obtained by asking the right people some questions.

                And if the argument is going to be made for more wilderness areas that Recreation Areas and Scenic Areas do not provide enough permanent protection from development and mining even for areas that are suitable for a more diverse array of recreation activities, then wilderness advocates would be better off getting the management rules changed so that there can be different degrees of wilderness as far as recreational uses, but all with the expectation of no extractive use. It is very irritating to see these types of areas (NRA/NSA) criticized simply on the grounds that "they're not wilderness" without any attempt to address the reasons they are available as alternatives to wilderness in the first place.

                "Right now, you have been convicted of as many counts of treason as Manning." -- wiscmass. (Yes, you.)

                by cville townie on Sun Mar 27, 2011 at 04:58:44 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  I say bikers should advocate against wilderness (0+ / 0-)

                  because wilderness areas aren't in their interests.

                  Wilderness areas are set up to not have mechanized use, a designation often misunderstood to mean motorized. Sleds are allowed, wheelbarrows not.

                  By designating an area Wilderness it's understood that some historic (since the late 70s?) uses will be changed. I think many would enjoy national recreation areas more, and perhaps we need more of them.

                  remember that leave footprints take photos stuff?

                  "Don't fall or we both go." Derek Hersey 1957-1993

                  by ban nock on Sun Mar 27, 2011 at 05:42:18 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

              •  By the way (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                ban nock

                upon re-reading your original comment I think we're coming from different places, but may not be that far off in our goals, either. I think it's not that common knowledge that despite most of the proposals which actually pass into law being reasonable to most of the parties involved, how many of the original proposals are not. I guess it's that... most mountain bikers would rather not have to be closely involved in an obscure lobbying effort.

                Perhaps it's not a bad thing for them to be involved in politics, as well, but I fear that may lead too many the wrong way if the wilderness advocates do not step up and recognize differing uses before their proposals start their way through Congress. If they do, on the other hand, then they've made some new friends, and people who don't need to be on different sides don't end up there. Here in VA there was a lot of apprehension for several years about what was coming down the pike as far as wilderness proposals, and then a very reasonable coalition proposal got the support of our senators and congressmen from both parties. A lot of that apprehension came from watching how the process was played out in some other states, though. And, of course, it's not over, and that won't be the last proposal or study area, for good reason, so there are still concerns about the process.

                So I apologize for my tone as well; perhaps I did need to step away from the keyboard for a bit. Though not for the HR of profewalt's comment; that was well deserved as an example of the kind of uncivil us-against-them dialogue that doesn't help these matters much.

                "Right now, you have been convicted of as many counts of treason as Manning." -- wiscmass. (Yes, you.)

                by cville townie on Sun Mar 27, 2011 at 05:29:22 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

      •  I hate to admit (12+ / 0-)

        that I have two cats who are outdoors only in the summer at a friend's lake cottage.  They are rodent murderers:  squirrels, chipmunks, moles and an occasional bat.  The birds are smart -- or huge (herons, hawks, crows, eagles).  We always have two nests at the cottage -- and we've made it impossible for the cats to reach them.

        I'm not that upset about most of the rodent murders -- but I get furious when a bat is caught.  I love those critters.

        And I agree re: mountain bikes -- frigging walk the trails or don't be a jerk.  Our blueyedace2 rides his bike onto trails in WI and he is completely respectful of his environs.  Not everyone has his keen sensibilities, alas.

        " My faith in the Constitution is whole; it is complete; it is total." Barbara Jordan, 1974

        by gchaucer2 on Sun Mar 27, 2011 at 01:12:17 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Mt. Bikes (7+ / 1-)

        I have to agree with this..Been almost run over too many times by the lycra crowd...

        •  HRed for collective attack (0+ / 0-)

          Your own experiences with being treated rudely on trails, if that is indeed what is happening, would be better served by addressing the people who are abusing them than attacking mt. bikers as a stereotyped group. It's certainly not a conservation need you are describing and shouldn't be addressed by the process intended to conserve more remote and sensitive areas.

          I'm sure that if you talked to some of the mt. bikers in your area, they might be willing to get the word out about the need to be more respectful of shared use on the trails. Most groups I have met would be mindful of this. You should ask at bike shops, or look for groups who organize on the Internet or in person.

          "Right now, you have been convicted of as many counts of treason as Manning." -- wiscmass. (Yes, you.)

          by cville townie on Sun Mar 27, 2011 at 02:57:18 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  uprated to counter bizarre hr n/t (0+ / 0-)
      •  Have you ever seen a dog killing a ground nesting (5+ / 0-)

        bird on public land, or on private land for that matter, while you were on a hiking trail?  I never have and I grew up in the high bluff area along the upper Mississippi River where there were plenty of ground nesting birds and plenty of dogs.  I've seen dogs chase birds but I've never seen a dog kill a wild bird or destroy its nest. Chickens, yes, but not a wild bird.  That's because wild birds are hard to catch, and it's easier to wait until dinnertime for an effortless bowl of kibble to appear.

        As for dogs chasing game, most dogs will chase rabbits, squirrels, and other small, furry creatures, more as play than anything else, but few will chase a deer, an elk, a moose, or a bison.  They are just not that stupid.  They know if they go chasing after something bigger than they are they might just get hurt.  Dogs might bark at the game, but chase after them?  My dogs see a large animal and quickly come to heal.  They don't want to be anywhere near a hoof that might injure them.

        Maybe its different with dogs left by their owners to roam the countryside at large, but those aren't the ones likely to be on a hiking trail.  Personally, I think people who want to keep dogs off hiking trails just don't like dogs.

        "I believe that ignorance is the root of all evil. And that no one knows the truth." - Molly Ivins

        by Involuntary Exile on Sun Mar 27, 2011 at 02:02:20 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Dogs are a large problem with ground nesting birds (6+ / 0-)

          they don't have to catch them to have a devastating effect.

          Herbivores especially in winter are disturbed just by seeing large canines, and yes, peoples dogs do take off and chase large animals. In winter any additional stress on deer, elk, or moose can cause they to lose precious calories that might just tip the scales and cause starvation.

          We have city parks and special designated dog walking areas in much of our open space, wilderness, National Parks, and state wildlife areas out here, to give wildlife some protection.

          I realize many are unaware of the affect their pet might well have on wild populations, that's why the biologists make rules and what not.

          I like dogs, mans best friend :-)

          "Don't fall or we both go." Derek Hersey 1957-1993

          by ban nock on Sun Mar 27, 2011 at 02:15:27 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  In most places in the US deer are so numerous (0+ / 0-)

            the last thing they need is protection - from barking dogs chasing them off or anything else, for that matter.  I have never seen a dog on a hiking trail chase after a moose or an elk or even a deer.  Maybe it happens, but I'll bet those dogs are running at large and not out hiking with their owners.  And I'll also bet the dogs harassing birds are running at large as well and not walking at heel on the trail.

            I've spent loads of time in state and national forests, parks and wilderness areas. IMO the overly restrictive regulations concerning dogs have more to do with people than with wildlife.  A dog on a leash on a trail is not going to flush ground nesting birds or run after elk.  For one thing, ground nesting birds and foraging game tend to avoid hiking trails because people regularly pass by.  And yet dogs are not permitted on trails in national parks. Why is that?  It's because some people on the trails are afraid of dogs, and some people who own dogs allow their dogs to run at large.

            "I believe that ignorance is the root of all evil. And that no one knows the truth." - Molly Ivins

            by Involuntary Exile on Sun Mar 27, 2011 at 04:03:49 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Some dogs and other pets (0+ / 0-)

              do carry roundworm and giardia without giving any indication to their owners.   If they drool or eliminate in the area they can transmit these, and any number of other organisms that are deadly to wildlife to the surrounding fauna.  

              Best to leave them home when going into any truly wild areas.

              •  Oh please. The wildlife are much more likely (0+ / 0-)

                to transmit roundworm and giardia to hikers and their dogs than the dogs are likely to infect the wildlife.  And since when have roundworm and giardia been transmitted in drool?  You got a cite for that statement?

                Sounds like another dog hater making up reasons to keep dogs out of recreational areas.

                "I believe that ignorance is the root of all evil. And that no one knows the truth." - Molly Ivins

                by Involuntary Exile on Sun Mar 27, 2011 at 04:57:25 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  You need to educate yourself on this. (0+ / 0-)

                   Page 12 through 14 has info on dog transmission of illness to wildlife.  
                     It's the most thorough article I know of regarding impact of canines on wildlife and wildlands.


                  Actually, I am not a dog hater.  I do dog rescue, and have had a number of huskies of my own, and used to sled, ski, camp, hike, and run with my animals.  There are an incredible amount of areas that are open to dog use in the national forests and other areas -- why insist on letting them run in the overused and overstress or truly wild areas?  

                  Worms won't be spread by saliva (drool) but parvo and distemper will .   Glacer National Park lost a lot of their wolves to canine distemper from domestic dogs a number of years ago.  

                  Note that I said that dogs should not be taken to true wildlife areas.  Here in California we have designated Wilderness areas that are critical habitat, particularly for deer and elk in the spring.   Dogs in those areas create a lot of death and distruction amongs the mothers and newborns and have to be kept out.

                  Please do read the article, you will see that dogs don't belong everywhere.

        •  If dogs are leashed, that minimizes the problem. (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Involuntary Exile, ban nock, elwior

          I'd estimate that about a third of the dogs I see on trails are unleashed, even though it is legally required for them to be leashed. Perhaps their owners are unaware of the rules, or they don't think there dog will do much damage, or they just don't care. I often see owners let their dogs run free to tear up vegetation in wetlands or scare flocks of birds.

          •  The two big problems as I see them (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:

            1). The utter lack of open space provided for dogs to run free off leash.  This is a big problem because dogs, especially large dogs, need regular exercise.  Because there are so few places to let one's dog run free some owners take advantage of whatever open space they can get to whether or not it is appropriate for their dogs to run free in that area.

            2).  The utterly irresponsible behavior of people who own dogs and don't properly train them.  It makes it really bad for those of us who do train our dogs.

            I have a border collie X Labrador retriever who is so well trained and so well disposed I can walk her anywhere off leash and she will stay at heel.  I have a Siberian husky X German shepherd that wants to run full out and if allowed off leash will run 50 yards in front of me, so she stays leashed wherever leashes are mandated or her safety requires. Period. I'd like to be able to walk both, leashed, on trails in the national parks, but it's not permitted thanks to stupid dog owners and scaredy-cat dog haters.

            "I believe that ignorance is the root of all evil. And that no one knows the truth." - Molly Ivins

            by Involuntary Exile on Sun Mar 27, 2011 at 04:39:38 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  lol I'd prefer to not be bothered (0+ / 0-)

              by other people's dogs while out for a nice hike.

              Does that make me a 'scaredy-cat dog hater?'

              Summary of several preceding posts:

              "I'm a mountain biker, therefore anyone who doesn't want to be around mountain bikers is unreasonable!"

              "I have dogs, therefore anyone who prefers to not be around dogs is unreasonable!"

              The internet: It's like Facebook, only bigger.

              by VictorLaszlo on Sun Mar 27, 2011 at 07:31:04 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  It sure doesn't make you a dog lover. (0+ / 0-)

                In just what way would a dog on a leash on a hiking trail bother you?  If my dog is walking at heel with me, what problem does she pose to you or anyone else?  Just admit you don't like dogs.

                "I believe that ignorance is the root of all evil. And that no one knows the truth." - Molly Ivins

                by Involuntary Exile on Sun Mar 27, 2011 at 11:36:40 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  I suppose (0+ / 0-)

                  this is the answer:

                  2).  The utterly irresponsible behavior of people who own dogs and don't properly train them.  It makes it really bad for those of us who do train our dogs.

                  ...because you're right that a dog walking near its owner on a leash and nowhere near me wouldn't bother me.

                  The internet: It's like Facebook, only bigger.

                  by VictorLaszlo on Mon Mar 28, 2011 at 01:13:13 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

      •  I'm as fierce a defender of wilderness as (6+ / 0-)

        anyone here, but we hikers need to be more tolerant of mountain bikes (which are not high tech machines).  People who have nonmotorized access to the backcountry need to band together, not fight among themselves.

        Join/follow Climate Hawks and Public Lands; @RL_Miller

        by RLMiller on Sun Mar 27, 2011 at 03:00:12 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Sounds like a huge expanse of woods (7+ / 0-)

    I'd rather some sort of Wilderness area than parks though. The limitations on Wilderness areas are much greater, no concessions less roads. Boosters like parks as they pull in traffic and the dollars the tourists bring, because once you call something a park it's on everyone's hit list and you have a park headquarters etc. Park service also has a not so great record of management.

    "Don't fall or we both go." Derek Hersey 1957-1993

    by ban nock on Sun Mar 27, 2011 at 12:44:54 PM PDT

    •  Oh, and nice looking moose :-) (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      RLMiller, elwior, Seamus D

      "Don't fall or we both go." Derek Hersey 1957-1993

      by ban nock on Sun Mar 27, 2011 at 12:48:24 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  It seems to me (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      RLMiller, Bronx59, LeftyEngineer, elwior

      that the NPS does a lot better job maintaining lands in their charge than happens in wilderness areas, which get little to no maintenance, and in balancing use and preservation too.

      If this is cut-over forest, as it seems to be, it needs restoration as much as protection.

      We choose to go to the Moon in this decade and do the other things, not because they are easy, but because they are hard. - John F Kennedy

      by badger on Sun Mar 27, 2011 at 02:47:47 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  good point, probably doesn't meet the criterion (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        elwior, badger, glattonfolly

        for wilderness. I think the paper mills have been cutting that place over many times.

        National Forest is even less restrictive than Park Service.

        For pristine areas I like Wilderness because it limits development the most.

        "Don't fall or we both go." Derek Hersey 1957-1993

        by ban nock on Sun Mar 27, 2011 at 04:25:00 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Wilderness designation usually requires (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          ban nock, RLMiller

          a "roadless" condition. A place where "man is a visitor". There are Wilderness areas with old decommisioned roads, so it is conceivable to designate at least a portion. Designated areas are rarely less than 3000 acres; this one could be pretty large.

      •  Wilderness areas are often NPS managed (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        RLMiller, willyr

        Wilderness lands are in BLM, USFS, NFWS and NPS hands. Management objectives are the same as delineated in teh Wilderness Act regardless of agency. NPS does have more of a wilderness ethic in it's culture than the other agencies. (Long time NPS employee here)

        •  I'm not sure about NPS (0+ / 0-)
          NPS does have more of a wilderness ethic in it's culture than the other agencies.

          It's true that USFS has a multiple-use mandate, but I think they take wilderness more seriously than NPS.  USFS doesn't (normally) allow chainsaws in designated wilderness (NPS does!) and has stricter restrictions on the use of helicopters for management purposes in wilderness.

          •  That would actually be part of my point (0+ / 0-)

            It takes a lot of work to restore and maintain an area. A lot of it can be done with hand tools and hiking into back country, but the biggest expense is labor. If you save some labor, you can afford to do more acres.

            My purpose would be to actually preserve these places as sustainable ecosystems - if a few hours of chainsaw work makes that possible, I'm all in favor of it.

            We choose to go to the Moon in this decade and do the other things, not because they are easy, but because they are hard. - John F Kennedy

            by badger on Sun Mar 27, 2011 at 05:27:23 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  I'm not going to quibble (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:

            I'm sure there is anecdotal evidence of chainsaws in NPS managed designated wilderness. But in my experience in Alaska and elsewhere the mandate to exclude power equipment is taken seriously by wilderness managers. I'm sure there are some rouge managers, but it certainly not NPS policy to allow chainsaws in NPS managed National Wilderness.

        •  I know the NPS manages parts of the (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          wilderness system. My opinion would be that it would be better for this area to be NPS managed, but not managed as wilderness.

          Unlike you, I'm not intimately familiar with NPS, but from what I've come across in reading, NPS doesn't have the ecosystem preservation vs. timber production that NFS has, so they're more willing to look at and adopt earlier things like beneficial fire or the use of fire surrogates. They'd maybe have less trouble going after invasives and restoring native vegetation, which cutover is probably going to need.

           And I have the impression NPS (when it has the money) will actually focus on preserving a resource, rather than mostly ignoring it, which is pretty much what a wilderness designation leads to. The last is again more of an NFS behavior - maybe NPS manages its wilderness better too.

          We choose to go to the Moon in this decade and do the other things, not because they are easy, but because they are hard. - John F Kennedy

          by badger on Sun Mar 27, 2011 at 05:35:03 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  With all due respect... (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:

            management of designated Wilderness is not often "ignoring it". In a well managed wilderness there is active management including inventory and monitoring of resources (biological cataloging of flora and fauna and monitoring of indicator species to document human impacts or ecosystem changes), prescribed fires and prescribed natural fire (managed natural fire starts that are monitored to document behavior, resource impact, intensity and extent (this is what I used to do)), trail maintenance, people management through permitting to limit numbers and manage impacts, backcountry law enforcement.

            A well managed wilderness is a thing of beauty, but it requires money, more manual vs mechanical labor and a blending of Science and People management. The key is the money. The Wilderness System is being starved to death.

            •  Like I said (0+ / 0-)

              I don't have your degree of familiarity. But I have talked to people locally - people who have a lot of respect for the lands in their charge, who in turn I have a lot of respect for - and when the subject turns to local wilderness areas, the response is somewhere between nothing can be done (which I don't believe is true) and nothing will be done.

              There is, to my knowledge, no prescribed burning of any kind done in local wilderness areas, while it's been done with great success outside of those areas. Wildland fire use for resource benefit goes on here, but the acreages involved are tiny. What's more typical is that fires start or spread into wilderness areas and fire managers set their perimeters (whether intentionally or necessarily I don't know) so that thousands of acres of high fuel-load wilderness burn - not in any prescriptive sense that I can see. The future condition resulting from those kinds of burns is anybody's guess, which IMO isn't management.

              I'm sure money has a lot to do with it, but even with bills like Wyden proposed for OR and Tester for MT for their National Forests, which from local input would have required more pro-active management, an Asst Secy of Ag was extremely opposed to requiring more USFS resources to be devoted toward improving forest quality. And that's National Forest, not wilderness.

              Some recent wilderness designations have included language that recognizes the need for more active intervention, and I did see one article that indicated USFS was going to use herbicides to go after knapweed in one wilderness area (whether that got past opposition, I don't know), but in general I see non-NPS managed wilderness areas mostly neglected. Yeah, they do the law enforcement and limit visitors and have great maps of conditions and vegetation and wildlife populations, but trees and vegetation and wildlife don't read the maps.

              The "man as a visitor" idea seems to me to be a largely unnatural condition historically or pre-historically, it's a long way between that and "man as an exploitive destroyer", and to really preserve these areas seems to me to require a lot more intervention than is currently contemplated and in many cases currently possible because of opposing factions or funding.

              We choose to go to the Moon in this decade and do the other things, not because they are easy, but because they are hard. - John F Kennedy

              by badger on Mon Mar 28, 2011 at 09:51:59 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

  •  conditions of her gift (10+ / 0-)

    i hope that she is knowledgable enough to attach conditions to her gift.  No mining, no logging, to name a few.

  •  Wonderful generosity (11+ / 0-)

    It is nice to see Ms Quimby providing a nice example to other wealthy Americans of providing a legacy for generations yet to come. It is also great that we may soon permenantly protect yet another vast track of undeveloped land for wildlife.

    Scheduling this to republish on Park Avenue in a bit. Thanks for the wonderful news.

    "So it was OK to waterboard a guy over 80 times but God forbid the guy who could understand what that prick was saying has a boyfriend."--Jon Stewart

    by craigkg on Sun Mar 27, 2011 at 12:49:04 PM PDT

  •  You mention the approval of the Senators (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    RLMiller, cpresley, Parthenia, elwior

    would be needed. What about the wingnuts? This sounds a bit like Rockefeller and the Tetons where he literally couldn't give away the land because concerned citizens business interests got all pissy and dragged it thru the courts for decades. Anything like that up in those Maine woods?

    The Weeping Orange Creeper (vulgarium boehnerii) is a Class B noxious weed weed and should be removed if possible.

    by ontheleftcoast on Sun Mar 27, 2011 at 01:05:10 PM PDT

  •  roxanne (6+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    badger, RLMiller, cpresley, elwior, Donna Z, UTvoter

    has worked tirelessly for a lot of years for this. big up!
    an inspiring story, from a few candles to $350 million, she's done it all for the greater good, and succeeded awesomely.

    Love is the source, substance and future of all being. --St. Francis

    by ksingh on Sun Mar 27, 2011 at 01:12:18 PM PDT

  •  the proposed park would be adjacent to (0+ / 0-)

    but not include Baxter state park? Why not donate the land to the state and have it be included in the state park?

    •  Keeps LePage's mitts off it (9+ / 0-)

      Aren't you worried about what will happen to Baxter with him in office?

      •  sure, but he'll be long gone by 2016 (0+ / 0-)

        when the land would potentially change hands.  of course, palin could be president then and she would be no friend of the park service.  

        if government management is an issue, why not donate the land to some non-government conservation organization, like The Nature Conservancy?  

      •  I think Baxter is safe (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        The Park was established by 28 donations of land, in Trust, from Park donor Percival P. Baxter between the years of 1931 and 1962, eventually creating a Park of over 200,000 acres (809 km2) in size. Baxter Park is not part of the Maine State Park system. Sole governance is provided by the Baxter State Park Authority, consisting of the Maine Attorney General, the Maine Commissioner of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife and the Director of the Maine Forest Service. The Park is independently funded through a combination of revenues from trusts, user fees and the sale of forest products from the Park's Scientific Forest Management Area.

        ... just floating by ...

        by cumulo on Sun Mar 27, 2011 at 07:16:29 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Three guesses. First two don't count. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      RLMiller, elwior

      And the last guess has to involve the bloated sack we call "Governor".

      Corporate Dog

      We didn't elect Obama to be an expedient president. We elected him to be a great one. -- Eugene Robinson

      by Corporate Dog on Sun Mar 27, 2011 at 01:40:37 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  One little OT about (5+ / 0-)

    Burt's Bees.  They unfortunately got hammered by FDA re: claims for one of their products several years ago.  I understand and approve of the strict regulations overall -- and generally, word of mouth among folks who resist pharmaceuticals is enough -- but, BB's transgression was miniscule compared to Big Pharma who have actually killed people.

    I swear by every BB product I've ever used -- especially Res-Q Ointment in the green tin -- I can't tell you how many infections and wacky face eruptions that stuff has cured in a couple of days.  (heh -- take that, FDA)

    " My faith in the Constitution is whole; it is complete; it is total." Barbara Jordan, 1974

    by gchaucer2 on Sun Mar 27, 2011 at 01:20:30 PM PDT

  •  Thanks for the diary. (4+ / 0-)

    "Such is the irresistible nature of truth that all it asks, and all it wants, is the liberty of appearing." - Thomas Paine

    by blueoregon on Sun Mar 27, 2011 at 01:26:52 PM PDT

  •  It would be nice if Leon Gorman (of (4+ / 0-)

    L L Bean fame) would join forces with her. I know he has given a lot to environmental causes, although I understand there are some teabagger leanings in the family.

    A society grows great when old men plant trees in whose shade they know they shall never sit. -Greek proverb

    by marleycat on Sun Mar 27, 2011 at 01:27:05 PM PDT

  •  I have to admit, I'm unconvinced. (5+ / 0-)

    As one who visits the Great North Woods regularly, I really enjoy the open access the paper companies permit on their lands.   I think what Quimby is advocating is admirable, but I'm not convinced it's in the best interests of visitors such as myself.  

    I've driven the Golden Road from Baxter to Jackman, and to be sure, there are some very ugly areas around logging operations; but just the same, I have an appreciation for the way the companies have managed the forests as a way of ensuring a continual growth of the forests.  The amazing array of wildlife observable on these lands makes them a very special juxtaposition of environmental rape and stewardship.  

    Should this be a National Park?  If it is anything like Baxter, great; but I'd as soon not have it become a pristine environmental paradise that I can't get into.

    You can't spell CRAZY without R-AZ.

    by rb608 on Sun Mar 27, 2011 at 01:28:09 PM PDT

    •  I've Had Great Times in the North Maine Woods (6+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      RLMiller, ban nock, pat bunny, elwior, rb608, willyr

      and the landowners should be commended for their willingness to allow public access to jewels like the St. John River and Allagash Wilderness Waterway.  But the Quimby lands, as I understand it, are east of Baxter, in the wild areas around the East Branch of the Penobscot--some distance from the bulk of the NMW lands.  

      I have taken clients into Baxter in the summer and the winter over the years.  The rules in Baxter are fairly strict, similar to NPS.  I doubt that a national park in the area east of Baxter would be any more restrictive.

      I would be more concerned with the Plumb Creek plans to subdivide land around Moosehead Lake than a national park adjacent to Baxter.  Although in this economy, finding investors to develop those lands could be problematic.  

      •  OMG yes. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        The Plum Creek development plans around Moosehead Lake make me wonder if I'll ever go back if that happens.  Moosehead was such an unbarely spoiled jewel, conversion of all that property to private development would be terrible (IMO).  That said, as an outsider, I feel no standing to comment on what's best for the economy of the area.

        You can't spell CRAZY without R-AZ.

        by rb608 on Sun Mar 27, 2011 at 06:40:40 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Any land in private hands can restrict access (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Seamus D, RLMiller, rb608

      with no accountability to the public. Or they can clearcut, subdivide, sell off, lock up, - whatever feeds the bottom line. They are not letting the public on out of the goodness of their hearts. It's just money in teh bank for now and they are buying good will from the public by allowing access.

      I'd rather the People own it that the Private corporation.

      •  They're letting the public in (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        because it's easier than keeping them out, I suspect.  That said, they really don't have to let us in, but manning gates at every entry point is clearly not cost effective.  

        I'll take this opportunity to commend everyone and ever agency in Maine for their attitude that folks are responsible for themselves.  You drive on that road or hike on that trail at your own risk.  No caution signs, no guardrails, no assurance that anybody will come to save your ass if you screw up.  I love Maine.

        You can't spell CRAZY without R-AZ.

        by rb608 on Sun Mar 27, 2011 at 06:44:40 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  northeast is an underserved area :) (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Only Needs a Beat, RLMiller, elwior

    I doubt that this slogan will fly

  •  I can't imagine your crazy guv allowing this (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    RLMiller, elwior

    He certainly must have some role to play in this, and creating a new national park seems like the LAST thing he would want to do.

  •  What a great thing to do. Of course, the GOP.... (4+ / 0-)

    ....will vehemently oppose this.  They'll ask: "How can you leave all this unimproved land that is not subject to developers?"

  •  The Maine Twins are moderate? (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    cville townie, RLMiller, Donna Z

    I'll donate an additional acre of my OWN land in Maine, if they were to back a proposal which requires the Federal Government to spend more money, at a time when austerity is the new black.

    They don't have the guts, and they're all too cognisant of the bounty that the Teabag Brigade has put on their seats.

    Corporate Dog

    We didn't elect Obama to be an expedient president. We elected him to be a great one. -- Eugene Robinson

    by Corporate Dog on Sun Mar 27, 2011 at 01:38:24 PM PDT

  •  Better not make it a state park (4+ / 0-)

    Governor Teabag would bulldoze it and pave it over.

  •  This is what I'd like to do if I get filthy rich (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    badger, RLMiller, Amber6541

    I'd buy up every last acre of undeveloped forest and wilderness, and turn it all into a sort of private national park.  Or I might give it all to the government to turn into national parks on their own.  I'm not sure which would be better.

    Cheers to this lady for doing this work.

  •  What a wonderful gift (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    RLMiller, Amber6541, pat bunny

    I guess I should buy some Burt's Bees stuff.

  •  What rural politician in their right mind (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    is going to turn down 30,000 hunting acres.  Really this seem like a great economic opportunity for the state of Maine. From Dictatorship to Democracy, Guide to Non Violent Protests. Because your sig should include a link that will get it banned in China.

    by sdelear on Sun Mar 27, 2011 at 03:34:44 PM PDT

  •  Backup plan? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    This is politics afterall.  I hope there is a good backup plan.  The Nature Conservancy?

  •  This is great news. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Anything that adds a bit of environmental good news is so appreciated these days. Natural growth amidst the man-made destruction in the news these days lifts my heart. I'm sure I'm not alone in that.

  •  no (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    ban nock, RLMiller

    money. That what we are going to hear.

    3 wars and counting so must be true.

  •  Looking over the comments I see a lot of (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    RLMiller, Tracker, willyr

    differing constituents for protection. Bikers, hikers, dog lovers; add to that list hunters, ATV and snomos, etc and you can have a very large piece of land with mixed management.

    A designated wilderness core with wildlife corridors, designated motorized and non-motoized areas and trails and a National Preserve on the outer ring which allows hunting and other activities. It's a model used in the big parks in Alaska and helps get buy in from a wide variety of groups.

    Money will be the biggest issue. Nice gift, but the NPS has been cut to the bone and is facing more consolidation. This gift will never happen until the NPS as a whole gets increased funding.

    Disclaimer: I am a long time NPS employee with experience in Alaska, Oregon, Massachusetts, and Wisconsin. The North Woods of Maine proposal has been arond a very long time. I admire their persistence! I'd love to work in that park if it ever happens!

  •  i think it needs to be first growth to be a nat'l (0+ / 0-)

    silver falls, outside of salem ore, was turned down b/c of that reason:  it had been logged once.  it's now just a state pk. with spectacular 2nd growth trees and magnificent falls.
    so we'll see.
    good luck to burt's!

    Say No to Frankenfish

    by stagemom on Sun Mar 27, 2011 at 04:54:06 PM PDT

  •  Northeast Underserved? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    That's the understatement of the year.  Ever been to Acadia National Park in, say, August?  You can hear people farting in the tent at the camp site next to you.

    And so much of the great Maine interior has been logged to infinity.  It has the same feel as the Wisconsin north woods I grew up in -- poplar plantations for the paper mills where giant White Pine forests used to live.  Talk about a crying shame.

    This aggression will not stand, man.

    by kaleidescope on Sun Mar 27, 2011 at 05:12:11 PM PDT

  •  How are you going to protect it from (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Magnifico, RLMiller

    the current republican/corporate raiders? The government seems to be the only answer, but look who has the local government now. All it takes is one or two wells and the place is toast.

  •  Excellent news (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Something wonderful to cheer!! Thanks.

    Be radical in your compassion.

    by DWG on Sun Mar 27, 2011 at 11:17:54 PM PDT

  •  This is great news, but you have an error (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    ban nock, RLMiller
    The last time a large national park was created was in Alaska in the 1980s during the Carter administration.

    Death Valley, an awesome part of the California desert, was made a national park in 1994.

    •  It depends on how you define "created." (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      RLMiller, fizziks, willyr

      Death Valley, Joshua Tree, Black Canyon of the Gunnison, Great Sand Dunes, Cuyahoga Valley, Congaree, and Dry Tortugas National Parks were all designated since the Alaska Lands Act. However, they were all upgrades of existing National Park System units. For example, Death Valley was already a national monument.

      I think the only brand new, free-standing national park since 1980 is Great Basin in Nevada, which is only 77,000 acres. We are way overdue for a whole new generation of national parks across the country.

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