In recent days there have been numerous letters to the editor touting the idea that they want balanced use in the Pryors between motorized recreation and other users. I attended the meetings held by the Forest Service concerning the travel plans for the Beartooths and the Pryors. The curious thing to me is that most of those who were opposed to the roads and trails had never been to the Bearthooths or the Pryors and had no idea where or what the roads were. They just sang the wilderness song that they need quiet places.
I have backpacked most of the trails in the Beartooths and have driven or hiked most all the roads and trails allowing motorized use. I have never had trouble finding quiet areas to camp or hike in either place. That argument is a fraudulent statement. When I hike, I can go everywhere. When I drive, I stay on the prescribed trails and turn in those who don't.
I would suggest that there is not balanced use now in the Pryors. We need more trails for motorized use and more enforcement in areas that are unapproved, not fewer trails. By the way, I have never seen a hiker in the Pryors in 20 years. There is no water there like the lakes in the Beartooths, so no one hikes there. Limiting the existing trails would cause more erosion and damage. Keep the existing trails open and let's have the multiple use that was intended for public lands.
Letters to the editor must contain the signature of the author, the writer's street address and work and home phone numbers. Maximum length is 250 words. The Gazette reserves the right to edit letters. Writers may have a letter printed no more often than once every 30 days.
Mail letters to: Gazette Voice of the Reader, PO Box 36300, Billings, MT, 59107 or fax to (406) 657-1208, or e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org. Do not send attachments.
Guest opinions and other signed editorial columns and letters do not necessarily reflect the viewpoint of The Billings Gazette.