The purpose of Wilderness Watch's "Wilderness Experienced" feature is to provide a platform for individuals to share their story of a recent personal trip into a designated Wilderness area, including information on how our National Wilderness Preservation System is or is not being maintained. Blog posts should be factual and inspirational, but can also include experiences of Wilderness being trammeled or degraded. (Please note that we are not looking for travelogues or writing aimed at directing people to places in Wilderness.) We suggest a length around 750 words. Wilderness Watch will review and approve/reject all submissions. Submit posts to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. Please include one to two images from your trip as well as an author photo. 



Wolf Sightings, Bear-Baiting, and Landing Strips: 
A Week in the Selway-Bitterroot Wilderness  by Brett Haverstick


I just returned from a recent backpacking trip into one of our nation’s first Wilderness areas, the Selway-Bitterroot Wilderness of north central Idaho and western Montana. It was a typical June trip in the Northern Rockies with thunder, lightning, rain, hail, clouds, and sun. The forests were greening up, the rivers and creeks flowing at a strong clip, and the birds were both active in flight and song. My personal trip diary reflected that I observed bald eagles, osprey, red-tailed hawks, ravens, pileated woodpeckers, hummingbirds, western tanagers, Canada geese, common mergansers, and more.


...I had witnessed gray wolves and elk performing their millennia-old dance, and then I was subjected to a mound of food that had been dumped on the ground just off the most-heavily traveled trail in the entire Selway-Bitterroot Wilderness. Was it a bear-baiting site?


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