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Spring 2017 Letter from the Editor

Spring has sprung and we’re pulling out our gear and getting ready to hit the trails. Once we get there, however, let’s take a moment to appreciate the work (much of it underpaid or volunteer) it takes to make those trails possible. All four issues this year will feature stories about what it takes to keep our public lands, access points, trails, and campsites up and running, from the hard labor of trail maintenance to the hard work of policy and management.

In addition to the first of three articles describing Bill Redwood’s recent trip to Peru and an article about heavy-duty trail work written by a member of the Potomac Appalachian Trail Club, this issue also includes an important message from our Navigating the Backcountry columnist, Phil Romig Jr, about accessing public lands. Romig’s article pairs nicely with Dennis Gale’s letter to the editor (below) imploring us all to join and/or support Backcountry Hunters and Anglers in their fight against the privatization of our public lands (I list a few others that are equally deserving of our support, but please let me know of any others we should all know about).

The more detail-oriented among you might have noticed that the last issue was from Volume 27, while this issue is the first of Volume 31. I recently spent a little time in the archive and discovered that the volume numbering got off at some point, so now the masthead correctly reflects that this is The Backcountry Llama’s thirty-first year. It is also my fifth year as editor, and so I’d like to take this opportunity to thank you: thank you for subscribing, for reading, for advertising, for sending in articles, for supporting this little magazine. Your support warms the cockles of my heart, keeps me busy and out of trouble, and, as of this issue, has allowed me to add four more color pages to each issue. Enjoy, and…

Happy Trails,
Alexa Metrick