Deseret News
Letter to the Editor

In response to Craig Gasser’s letter “Experience it first,” (Jan. 9), I have a few comments. Just like his neighbor, I too have not visited Bears Ears, but that should delight Mr. Gasser, not dismay him. He has been able to spend his days and weeks exploring these wilderness areas of Utah, a luxury which many of us do not have. At those times he probably could spend his whole adventure alone to discover and enjoy the solitude — perhaps enjoying 100,000 acres to himself. Has he thought that now, to the detriment in exposing this area to millions of tourists beating the path to experience wild Utah, this has done him or this area a favor? No longer will it be off the beaten path of seclusion and delightful discovery for those who really want to protect and love wilderness. Environmentalists, along with the federal government, give no service to Utah and its people by making monuments for the world to explore and trample.

7 comments on this story

I have backpacked, enjoyed nature, even Grand Staircase-Escalante, in my time, but always was annoyed when others disturbed my solitude. I wished I could be alone with my loved ones. Look at Zion National Park — once a lovely, quiet canyon, but through advertising and national park status it has turned into a controlled money pit, overcrowded by mostly sightseers. It is a regulated government mess. Sure, the tourists shops of Springdale thrive on the business, but how do the longtime family residents feel? I bet they wish for that once-peaceful place called Zion.

Let’s leave Utah as its own wilderness, where it is left wild and untouched by the masses of population. Environmentalists who really care about the pristine areas of Utah, or the world, for that matter, should hesitate to draw attention, to advertise and to encourage others to invade their “secret gardens.” In my opinion, these areas should never have been designated anything by anyone, but left as Utah’s many hiding places.

Charlotte McDonald