Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Dear Congress, Please Go Backpacking

Of course, I don't think the wilderness can solve all problems. But a week outside can change you in many ways: ways that can make you a better person. I have to believe it would help you guys learn to get along. There's been way too much finger pointing and blame going on. You guys need wilderness! Why?

It slows you down.

It makes you realize what is really important.

It humbles you.

You learn things about yourself.

It's hard and scary and there are bears. Instead of fiscal cliffs, there are real cliffs.

There's also more beauty than you ever imagined. It sinks into your soul.

You cross rivers and learn to read maps.

You get dirty and hungry and cold and there isn't someone to fix those things.

Instead, you have to rely on yourself.

If you're with others, you have to get along, because someone is carrying the stove. You talk out your differences and compromise. Because really, you are all here for the same reasons.

So how about it, Congress? Come on over. I'll loan you guys a thermarest or two. Point you in the right direction. In a week, report back on what you've learned.


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  2. Sort of like John Muir taking T. Roosevelt into the Sierras...a few nights around the campfire did wonders for Teddy's view of wild places...and it paid off! Love the photos and captions

  3. "You get dirty and hungry and cold and there isn't someone to fix those things." Exactly.

    I think everyone would be better off with a little backpacking in their lives (actually, I just wrote about why backpacking's so great on my blog a couple weeks ago - but I think you got some good points I missed). But you're right - especially congress! Maybe then they'd put a little more value on recreation uses than commercial uses too :)


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