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Archive for the ‘Warren Miller’ Category

Work Crew at Moose Creek 1979

Work Crew at Moose Creek 1979

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Episode 41 (32:06)

Thank you for joining us for the forty-first episode of the Selway-Bitterroot Wilderness History Project. In this episode, titled “Thirty Miles from Paradise,” we take a look at the community that exists in the Moose Creek Ranger Station. Located deep in the heart of the Selway-Bitterroot Wilderness, Moose Creek has housed Forest Service employees, work crews, volunteers, outfitters, visitors, and celebrities. Because it can only be accessed by airplane or thirty miles of non-vehicle trail, Moose Creek Ranger Station tends to foster tight communities within the people who live and work there each season. From the early days of the Forest Service in the 1920’s and 30’s, to the passage of the Wilderness Act in 1964, to the present day when the Selway-Bitterroot Foundation organizes volunteer crews to maintain the trails and manage fires, Moose Creek has been one of the central heartbeats of the Selway-Bitterroot area. The various comments presented in this podcast about living and working at Moose Creek give a small glimpse of this unique place.

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Crosscutting

Warren Miller using a torch to temper saw teeth

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Episode 20 (17:38)

Thank you for joining us for the twentieth episode of the “Selway-Bitterroot Wilderness History Project.” In this episode, titled “Crosscutting,” we hear from Warren Miller, who took a special interest in using and promoting primitive tools for use in the backcountry, in particular the crosscut saw. Because of his interest, Warren searched out experts to mentor him in the use and maintenance of crosscut saws, and eventually became one of the leading experts in the Forest Service on Crosscut saws, which led to his revising the manual produced by the Forest Service on the subject. Here, he tells us something about the intricacies of sharpening saws by filing, he discusses brands of saws, and tells a story about a particular saw that received a name.

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Warren Miller, 2010

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Episode 19 (12:09)

Thank you for joining us for the nineteenth episode of the “Selway-Bitterroot Wilderness History Project.” In this episode, titled “Managing Wilderness Is An Oxymoron,” Warren Miller explains how the wilderness rangers helped to interpret the Wilderness Act in a practical, tangible way, by educating backcountry recreational users and promoting primitive tool use, among other things.

Warren Miller was born in Salt Lake City, lived there until he was eleven, and then his family moved to Phoenix, Arizona. He attended Reed College in Portland where he majored in physics. After graduating, and spending some time traveling in Europe, he and his brother took a work trip with the Sierra Club, which took them into the Selway-Bitterroot off of Elk Summit. While on that trip, he was impressed with the country and its surroundings; he also met Dick Walker, who encouraged him to apply for a job as wilderness ranger. In his words, “I figured well, I’ll try this for a year or for a season and I stayed there 20 years.”

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The beautiful, pristine Selway River, near Bear Creek, 2010. Photo courtesy Debbie Lee

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Episode 17 (22:00)

Thank you for joining us for the seventeenth episode of the “Selway-Bitterroot Wilderness History Project.” This is a special episode, titled “What is the Greatest Threat to Wilderness?” Debbie Lee, our project coordinator, asked many of the oral history interviewees this question, and she received some surprising and enlightening answers. Among the interviewees in this podcast are Penny Keck, a longtime resident of the Selway-Bitterroot area who managed equipment for the Forest Service, as well as worked with her husband Emil to build and maintain many of the bridges and buildings. We hear from Ed Bloedel, who helped write the first wilderness management plans, Eric Melson and Rob Mason who currently work for the Selway-Bitterroot Foundation, and Warren Miller and Bruce Farling, who worked as Forest Rangers in the Moose Creek district in the 1970’s and 1980’s after the passage of the 1964 Wilderness Act. From these varying perspectives, we hear about the possible future of wilderness areas and their importance in the lives of current and future generations.

Slideshow: Scenic landscapes from the Selway-Bitterroot Wilderness at various points during the past century, show how little the protected landscape has changed. In this place, it is possible to view wild land as it once was, and to enjoy the tranquility of recreation in a pristine area.

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