They Can Build Their Own

It is rare that the national park service proposes to do something close to the right thing:

The National Park Service has proposed turning a washed-out road in north-central Washington’s upper Stehekin Valley into a trail for hikers and horseback riders

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, but the idea is meeting opposition from residents of the rural community.

As you might expect there are those that think this road should be rebuilt:

Already, some residents are finding fault with the preferred alternative. Members of the community group Stehekin Heritage say none of the four alternatives is viable. In addition, the preferred option would discourage visitors and residents from enjoying a large area of the North Cascades National Park.

Stehekin Heritage spokeswoman Roberta Pitts said in an e-mail that about half of Stehekin’s 85 permanent residents align themselves with her group’s goals.

She said her group worries that the road can no longer be used to take hikers and sightseers into the backcountry.

“Many of the most scenic hiking areas of the valley are now cut off to the day hikers. Fishermen are also a group that enjoyed using Bridge Creek for a day-use fishing trip,” she wrote.

Really, if our fine government folks are choosing not to spend our money, choosing not to (re)pave over part of our forests, well, I suggest we should support that good effort. Even reinforce so that, perhaps, they will build even fewer in the future.

In the mean time, if the about 42 1/2 plus the hikers, sightseers and fisherfolks really do think the road is a great thing then they can pay for the road themselves (yes, kick the park service out) and if these good folks are not willin’ they have no call on the rest of us to do it for them.

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