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Friends –

Bob and I recently did a bit of exploring out here near Moab and returned to these gorgeous red rock towers. Escaping to the wilderness has always been a necessity for us, but it has felt more important these past months.

A few of my friends will recognize this location, to others the sight of Determination Towers will be new. The way to get there is actually relatively accessible if you don't mind either hiking some distance, mountain biking, or riding a jeep on some bumpy terrain. Because it is accessible by jeep and the trail is known, Bob and I needed to pay our visit in the quiet -- before the spring break of April brings jeep madness to Moab.

My personal escapes are never about jeeps. I need the quiet. I need to be able hear the sounds of my hiking stick on the hollow parts of slickrock, the wind whistling through wings of a flying raven, and the sweet cascade of a canyon wren's call. I will visit Determination Towers and nearby Monitor and Merrimac Buttes during off-season. But when the jeeps start to arrive, I seek out more protected canyons.

Wilderness is worth protecting. Our public lands are worth preserving for future generations. They need to be carefully managed and protected from the permanent damage of industrial uses. Know that this protection is in danger.

Think how this painting would look if (or when?) oil rigs and/or hydraulic fracking equipment were allowed to coexist with these dramatic rock towers. I'm doing what I can to help it stay protected.

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