Land of the Free

Backpacker - - # TRAILCHAT -

Our March pub­lic lands is­sue in­spired strong re­ac­tions from read­ers: Some ap­pre­ci­ated it, while a few dis­agreed with our de­ci­sion to cover the topic at all.

Will But­ler, a petroleum en­gi­neer­ing stu­dent, ob­jected to the tone of our cov­er­age of drilling. “Oil, gas, and min­ing com­pa­nies are also com­prised of peo­ple like my­self: a reader of BACK­PACKER and a proud out­doors­man who cares a great deal about the preser­va­tion of this Earth,” he wrote.

In re­sponse to “Walk Free” ( page 76), our fea­ture on Scot­tish laws which let hik­ers cross pri­vate prop­erty, John Eck­erd wrote that sim­i­lar leg­is­la­tion would be a “non-starter” in the United States. “Peo­ple who went to the bank, got the loan for the land, and made pay­ments for 30 years would not be en­thu­si­as­tic,” he wrote.

David Nick­ell saw a big­ger prob­lem at play. “I see this as far

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