For anyone outside of Southern Oregon or Northern California, the Kalmiopsis Wilderness just might be one of the most beautiful places you have never heard of. Locals in the area are likely familiar with the name due to the decades of contention over whether or not the wilderness should be expanded to include still pristine watersheds like Rough and Ready Creek. In recent years, a sense of urgency has been added to that debate as various mining interests with staked claims in the area are moving forward with plans to develop nickel strip mines that would irrevocably alter the landscape. (Read more in this article I wrote last spring, "Hope and Heartache of Rough and Ready Creek")
In an effort to make a case for preservation, we will be accessing the remote upper reaches of Rough and Ready Creek's watershed and then following its water by boot and boat as much as possible as it then becomes the Illinois River which is itself a tributary of the Rogue River. The latter two rivers, both federally designated as Wild and Scenic, stand to be affected just as much as the lesser known ridge lines of Rough and Ready Creek should the proposed strip mining projects move forward.
It is our hope that by sharing the story of Rough and Ready Creek and how it relates to other resources and communities downstream, we make a compelling case for preservation over extraction.
For additional information check out www.kalmiopsisrivers.org
Risks and challenges
This project, in addition to being a documentary film, is also a wilderness expedition and as such, involves a set of variables that we won't have control over. Weather, and specifically, water levels can affect our ability to travel the various waterways involved in this project. Also, due to the remote nature of our trip we will be putting considerable faith in the ability of our electronic devices, namely cameras, to survive for the duration of our travels.
That said, anyone involved on the ground with this project has extensive experience in wilderness travel. We are guides, outfitters, and professional photographers used to working in backcountry environments.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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