Wasatch Environmental Update for March 4, 2018
By John Worlock
“There is a tide in the affairs of men….”
“There is a tide in the affairs of men, which taken at the flood, leads on to fortune. Omitted, all the voyage of life is bound in shallows and miseries.”
These are the words of Brutus in Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar. He goes on to say, “On such a full sea are we now afloat,” believing that his was a time for decisive action.
We bring these words to mind today, as we believe our voyage of life is currently bound in shallows and miseries, both nationally and in the state of Utah. And we want to remind ourselves of the era, not so long ago, when we believed that “on such a full sea we are now afloat.”
Those were the days of the great environmental awakening. They were days of decisive action, with passage of the Wilderness Act of 1964, locking in the notion that some parts of the nation were so special that they should be recognized and protected in their “natural condition,” so as to “secure for present and future generations the benefits of wildness.” Some think of the Wilderness Act as nature’s Bill of Rights, allowing the creation of some places where we simply let nature be. “Let it be….let it be.”
Let’s now talk about the Loan Peak Wilderness, Utah’s first designated Wilderness Area. It is unique in that it borders an urban area in the Salt Lake Valley but is dominated by rugged terrain, narrow glaciated canyons, open cirque basins and rocky ridges, with high peaks, reaching over 11 thousand feet in elevation. From most of the Salt Lake Valley, it dominates the eastern skyline, functioning as a beacon calling us into the Central Wasatch Mountains.
Save Our Canyons, devoted for all of its 4 decades to the idea of Wilderness, was deeply and importantly involved in the enactment of the Utah Wilderness Act of 1984, creating the Lone Peak Wilderness. In this current era, when we sometimes feel ourselves “bound in shallows and miseries,” it is important to celebrate that earlier time.
SO! ….Here comes our 16th Annual Lone Peak Wilderness Celebration! Go to save our canyons dot org slash events for information, but note that we’ll gather at the Falls Event Center, next Saturday March 10.