Crook County, Oregon

Mathieu Federspiel

IT Professional

Mathieu FederspielI first visited the Owyhee Canyonlands some decades ago. It instantly amazed me that an area like this still exists. Having lived in numerous places and driven across much of this continent both for my work as an IT professional and to explore the outdoors, the Owyhee stands out as special. It’s a largely untrammeled natural area that allows one’s soul to breathe.

There is no doubt that the canyons and hot springs of the Owyhee are outstanding. Yet it is the space in between that really makes the experience exceptional. The drive or the walk through so many miles of mostly rolling plains and sagebrush opens the mind and heart as wide as the vista, from horizon to horizon. Nature still feels untouched here, with lizards and snakes, hares and antelope. This is a rare feeling, to be in raw land with no development for farther than the eye can see. This is why it is critical that we permanently protect the Owyhee.

Now that I’m semi-retired, I’ve returned to Oregon to enjoy the incredible quality of life afforded in large part by our public lands. I’ve visited the Owyhee Canyonlands to camp, hike and explore numerous times, and I hope to continue to do so. And I feel we should protect something so unlike anything else in the lower 48.

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