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Old 04-13-2010   #11
Wadeinthewater's Avatar
Walterville, Oregon
Paddling Since: 1977
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 559
Originally Posted by boatdziner View Post
All of those rivers travel thru existing wilderness areas. All three have commercial outfitters who run rafting trips with oar rigs. The trick to the GC would be that all of those motor rigs that go down the river would be banned if it became a wilderness area.
I am not sure that is necessarily true that Wilderness designation would mean the end of helicopter landings or even motorized raft trips through the Grand Canyon. Planes land all of the time in the Frank Church Wilderness (Middle Fork Salmon and Salmon rivers) and I believe also in the Selway-Bitteroot Wilderness (Selway River). Boaters comprise the bulk of the flights into Indian Creek on the Middle Fork Salmon. Aircraft were grandfathered in at the time of Wilderness designation. Could the same thing happen for the Grand Canyon?

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Old 04-13-2010   #12
Stoner, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2007
Join Date: May 2008
Posts: 93
The Gunnison grandfathered in old crazy Leroy to run his jetboat up into the wilderness.

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Old 04-13-2010   #13
Boulder, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2001
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 212
I think the way it works is the specific rules of a wilderness area are written into the legislation that designates the area as wilderness. Here are a few excerpts from the wilderness act:

(c) Except as specifically provided for in this Act, and subject to existing private rights, there shall be no commercial enterprise and no permanent road within any wilderness area designated by this Act and, except as necessary to meet minimum requirements for the administration of the area for the purpose of this Act (including measures required in emergencies involving the health and safety of persons within the area), there shall be no temporary road, no use of motor vehicles, motorized equipment or motorboats, no landing of aircraft, no other form of mechanical transport, and no structure or installation within any such area.

(d)The following special provisions are hereby made:
(1) Within wilderness areas designated by this Act the use of aircraft or motorboats, where these uses have already become established, may be permitted to continue subject to such restrictions as the Secretary of Agriculture deems desirable. In addition, such measures may be taken as may be necessary in the control of fire, insects, and diseases, subject to such conditions as the Secretary deems desirable.
(6) Commercial services may be performed within the wilderness areas designated by this Actto the extent necessary for activities which are proper for realizing the recreational or other wilderness purposes of the areas.


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