Thursday, November 29, 2007

Adobe Town could get stronger protection

On Wednesday, the Wyoming Environmental Quality Council decided to back stronger protection for an area known as Adobe Town in southwest Wyoming. The meeting was held in nearby Rock Springs. According to an article in the Casper Star-Tribune:

The council voted 5-1 to approve a petition from the Laramie-based Biodiversity Conservation Alliance and seven other conservation groups that designates about 180,000 acres in and around Adobe Town as a "very rare and uncommon" area. Commissioners concluded that Adobe Town has the significant scenic, archaeological, historic, wildlife, or surface geological values necessary for the designation.

Here's a description of Adobe Town from the Friends of the Red Desert web site.

Carved into intricate shapes by water and wind, Adobe Town is possibly the most astonishing and remote set of badlands and geological formations in the entire state of Wyoming. Throughout the area, which is virtually untouched by human activity, wide patches of desert and rolling sand dunes stretch across the open spaces between colorful rock formations and rugged canyons. Fossils of long-extinct mammals, reptiles, and invertebrates show visitors what once inhabited this landscape. And several high priority plant species that have adapted to thrive off 5 inches of average rainfall sprout from the arid soil.

I've been to many sections of the Red Desert, including Adobe Town. It's a severe and beautiful landscape, one that needs protection from the ravages that have been inflicted upon other parts of Wyoming. I attended the "Red Desert Symposium" at the UW Art Museum in September. Annie Proulx was there, speaking about her new book, "Red Desert," which chronicles -- in words and stunning photos -- the scope of this wonderful region. I'll keep you posted on the release date for the book.

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