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Our favorite stories about public lands and opportunities for you to get involved in protecting your outdoor experiences.


6 Amazing Stories About Public Lands

Tania Lown-Hecht

In just 16 days, we could lose America's best conservation program. The Land and Water Conservation Fund has preserved access, improved trails, and protected important landscapes in 50 states for 50 years. 

A few weeks ago, we asked you to write to your legislators and urge them to renew the Land and Water Conservation Fund before September 30. Anyone can write a form letter, but you wrote over 650 personalized, individual letters to your representatives. Here are 6 amazing stories you told about why public lands matter to you:

  1. I live in Washington because of its unsurpassed natural beauty and abundant outdoor recreation opportunities. I am happy to know that my representatives in DC agree with me on the importance of maintaining Washington for everyone to enjoy. I watched the Perseid meteor shower last night/this morning a few miles from my home in North Bend. As we sat on a former train trestle in the Mt Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest looking up into the Milky Way, none of us could imagine a better place to be. The thought that this land and those experiences, might not be protected in 50 days is heartbreaking. I am grateful to have representatives that support Land and Water Conservation Fund so that generations after me can sit on that trestle to look up into that same sky and marvel at what can be seen. (Washington)
  2. The [Land and Water Conservation] Fund is critical to maintenance of our nation's greatest legacy, our public land resources. I personally use those lands for paragliding, hiking, rafting, and "getting away from it all" - something that, somewhat ironically, is key to my productivity and enduring motivation to contribute materially to our country's health care and medical diagnostics industries. We need our wild lands to enjoy and appreciate our labors in the urban jungle. (California)
  3. My family and I have made it a point to pursue visits to as many National Parks as possible on our yearly vacation. Our 9 yr old daughter enjoys the Junior Ranger program and is up to 10 or 11 badges, all obtained at national parks, historic sites and national monuments. These things are our gift to ourselves. They require our support and the LWCF helps make this happen. Please support renewing this funding before it expires. (Kansas)
  4. Recently (about two years ago) our community established a Land and Water Conservation Fund that I supported. The funds have been used to preserve some beautiful open spaces within our community. I believe this is a great, locally (not nationally) driven conservation tool that lets communities choose where to invest their conservation dollars. Please continue to support the Land and Water Conservation Fund. (Idaho)
  5. My family relies a lot on the wild places near where we live to get a healthy dose of nature. Just last night I drove my children to a trailhead in the Cleveland National Forest that I know of where a clear view of the sky is available away from the city lights. There we witnessed the Perseid meteor showers and one of the brightest individual meteors I've seen in my 54 years of life! Not having these open places to play and recreate and understand our lives as separate from the cities we live in is unimaginable. The loss of LWCF is even more so. Thank you for your years of advocacy for protecting our natural bounty as Americans! (California)
  6. I am a passionate mountain biker, trail runner, camper and hunter. I love spending time in the Cuyahoga Valley National Park, The Cleveland Metro parks and Mohican state park as well as many other public lands in Ohio and around the country. I feel there are very few places that one can go to in order to experience the outdoors that are not already marred by development. I believe that land set aside for the use of recreation by the people is a quintessentially democratic and American idea.  (Ohio)