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Happy about open spaces

Posted: January 13, 2009 8:08 p.m.
Updated: January 14, 2009 4:30 a.m.

As an avid hiker and sportsman, I am delighted to hear that the Omnibus Public Lands Management Act of 2009 was introduced into the Senate recently ("Wilderness bill encourages locals," Jan. 8).

This public lands bill will protect approximately 700,000 acres of land and rivers in California.

I was disheartened when the bill was not voted on in the last congressional session, but since it has been reintroduced in this session, I have great expectations that it will be passed quickly, leaving a great wild heritage for generations to come.

Not only does wilderness increase avenues of recreation, but it brings a better quality of life to the areas of California that it enhances.

Wilderness also brings economic enhancement, which we could all use right now!

The northern San Gabriel portion of this bill includes Magic Mountain and Pleasant View Ridge, which are excellent hiking areas, offering animal- and bird-watching opportunities.

Last year I had the rare opportunity to hike in the snow at both locations and saw people snow-shoeing and cross-country skiing.

Magic Mountain is also the home of some condors. Piru Creek at Frenchman Flats offers catch-and-release wild trout fishing.

This is a great place to go for family picnics, swimming, hiking and fishing. My grandchildren love being out in these great places.

I feel so lucky to have the opportunity to share all of these activities with them.

Thank you to Congressman "Buck" McKeon, Sen. Barbara Boxer and Sen. Dianne Feinstein for working on this bill.

I'd love to see even more in the future. Los Angeles needs all the wild places it has left.


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