The most common question that we hear in Happy Camp is about the meaning of all the “No Monument” signs you see all along out highways and Byways.
We live in the most beautiful place along the wild Klamath River. Our area is definitely different that the crowded, polluted, ugly urban California and we love it! We have the beautiful Klamath River as well as lakes where to enjoy fishing. There are so many things to do and see in our forests and so many critters live there that you could explore the rest of your life and still find new things to learn and see.
We are surrounded by wilderness areas which are even more lacking in “civilization” than the typical forests. To the south of us down Elk Creek Road is the premier Marble Mountain Wilderness Area comprising 241,774 acres of meadows, streams and 89 lakes! To the east of us is the Red Buttes Wilderness with 19,940 acres straddling the Oregon and Californian border and managed by the U. S. Forest Service. To the West is Siskiyou Wilderness; 182,802 acres spanning parts of the Klamath, Siskiyou and Three River’s National Forests. The wilderness is home to rare species, like wolverines, martin, fisher, spotted owl and elk. So are our backyards! Nadine McElyea had a black bear grazing on her lawn in the moonlight last night. We often see black-tailed deer driving home, and feed many varieties of birds in our bird-feeders. The clear streams teem with steelhead, Chinook salmon as well as trout. Further north is the Kalmiopsis Wilderness, 179,775 acres that’s mostly part of the Rogue River-Siskiyou National Forest. Its named after a plant that is related to the rhododendron, and is a challenge for me to spell.
With all these beautiful pieces of Creation all around us, we haven’t heard any good reasons to change all the area from Dillon Creek above Highway 96 all the way to Ashland Oregon, into a Bureau of Land Management property, “Siskiyou Crest National Monument” Even the writer of the original proposal, Laurel wasn’t willing to address the Siskiyou ‘County Board of Supervisors when they asked him to present the proposal, which happened after a leak that there was such a proposal came from the Department of the Interior In Washington, DC. The sneaky way it came out and the impossibility of getting accurate forthright information on the project is what makes some Siskiyou County residents uneasy about the whole plan.
That is the reason for the frequently seen signs “No Monument” you will see! For the love of our home, we see no benefit in making it a monument or a national park.