Andy Kerr

Conservationist, Writer, Analyst, Operative, Agitator, Strategist, Tactitian, Schmoozer, Raconteur


In the woods, too, a man casts off his years, as the snake his slough, and at what period soever of life is always a child.
— Ralph Waldo Emerson

The antonym of "recreation" is "work." As I generally love my work, to me recreation somewhat less important than if I hated my work. My interest in recreation generally pertains (surprise!) to the public lands. While recreation on the public lands should be exalted over uses that harm both nature and recreation (e.g. logging, mining, grazing, energy exploitation, etc.), recreation should not come at the expense of other values of the public lands (e.g. biological diversity, water quality and quantity, beauty and wildness). Some forms of recreation are inherently incompatible with these irreplaceable public lands values (e.g. generally the used of motorized equipment beyond getting to a place but motorized equipment becomes the central recreational activity) and should be banned. Even human-powered recreation must be subject to limitation to conserve and restore irreplaceable public lands values.  Excessive recreation (e.g. too many bike treads and/or too many Vibram® soles) can result the degradation of the irreplaceable public lands values upon which the recreation is predicated.

Overrecreation is a result of overpopulation and excessive consumption.

Public Lands Blog Posts

• Premembering Bob Packwood, Oregon Conservationist. Former U.S. Senator Bob Packwood (R-OR) was instrumental in the establishment of the Oregon Dunes and Hells Canyon national recreation areas.

A National System of National Recreation Areas. In 2016, Senator Ron Wyden (D-OR) authored very good legislative language to systematize and facilitate additional national recreation areas.

• The Proposed Oregon Wildlands Act of 2017: Very Good but Not Yet Great. Senators Ron Wyden (D-OR) and Jeff Merkley (D-OR) sponsor legislation that would, among other good things, establish the nation's first national recreation areas on Bureau of Land Management holdings (Rogue Canyon and Molalla).

• Dancing on the Dark Side: Wyden Guts His Own National Recreation Area System Bill. That good NRA System language Wyden had? Not any more. In 2017, Wyden authored very bad legislative language that would give a very light green patina on a very small fig leaf to those politicians who want to appear to be conserving the federal public lands for people, while they are abusing the federal public lands for corporations.


Here is my side-by-side analysis of Senator Wyden's 2016 (very good) and 2017 (very bad) legislative language to establish a National Recreation Area System.

Larch Occasional Papers

• 21st-Century National Recreation Areas for Oregon's National Forests and BLM Public Lands