03/06/2020

Public Lands Unite Us

Categories: Community

Whether you’re climbing, hunting, hiking, fishing, paddling, picnicking, OHVing, or partaking in one of hundreds of other activities—adventuring in great open spaces is core to the human experience. 

Today, roughly 80% of Americans live in urban areas, and public lands provide one of the last remaining refuges—wild spaces, available to all, where we can still experience adventure and connect to the natural world. These lands help keep us physically and mentally healthy. And they must be protected. 

At Access Fund, we envision a rich tapestry of protected landscapes that: 

  • Provide opportunities for recreation and adventure
  • Contribute to the health and wellness of all Americans
  • Help drive a strong and resilient economy
  • Preserve our unique human history
  • Allow diverse wildlife and ecology to thrive 

This vision calls for a strong democracy—for the consideration of all the myriad values and stakeholders of public lands, and for thoughtful allowance of appropriate activities in appropriate places.  

We believe that this vision is attainable. Although some forces seek to exploit our public lands for political gain, our overwhelming love for public lands unites us, despite these times of political turmoil. According to the 2020 State of the Rockies Project, two-thirds of voters across eight western states support conservation of public lands for recreation over extraction, regardless of political affiliation. 

At Access Fund, we’re inspired to see climbers joining forces with hunters, hikers partnering with OHVers, native tribes working with recreation groups...because protecting public lands is a nonpartisan passion, and there’s a lot at stake. We are coming together—across aisles and across pursuits—to defend our wild places. 

Here’s how we get there…

Credit Photo Courtesy of:
© Andrew Burr

Balanced Management

Public lands in America are home to a vast and diverse array of resources and values—from Native American cultural sites, to recreation, to oil and gas extraction and everything in between. These must be carefully balanced to protect these treasured landscapes.
Balanced Management

Adequate Funding

Public lands cannot protect themselves. As more stakeholders vie for access to the resources and values on these lands, we must invest in the infrastructure to support these activities and minimize conflicts and damage to the environment.
Adequate Funding

Healthy Democratic Process

A healthy democracy is a prerequisite to healthy and accessible public lands, and it is one of our best tools for protecting these lands and their outstanding recreation. It also protects these lands from being used as political bargaining chips. Without a healthy democracy, our ability to conserve and access public lands is compromised.
Healthy Democracy

A Vision Worth Fighting For

Each generation has an obligation to protect America’s amazing legacy of public lands, which have inspired and challenged climbers and other outdoor recreationists for generations. From the seaside cliffs of Acadia to the towering walls of Yosemite, these spectacular and remote landscapes offer a lifetime of adventure and exploration that enrich the human experience. 

No matter where you sit on the political spectrum, no matter which candidates you support in the upcoming election, we hope you will champion the causes and values that protect public lands. Although our growing community of climbers and outdoor adventurers holds a broad spectrum of ideologies and viewpoints, our love of the outdoors unites us.  

Join us in protecting America’s climbing and public lands for generations to come. As you prepare to exercise your vote this November, our commitment to you is that we’ll keep you informed of the issues impacting public lands.


Special thanks to these amazing adventurers for the inspiring photos. 
Collage 1 clockwise from top left: © Heather Distad, © Fat Tire, © Heather Distad, © Andrew Burr. Collage 2 clockwise from top left: © Nick Timbie, © Holly Smolenski, © Mike Morin, © Josette Deschambeault. Collage 3 clockwise from top left: © Heather Distad, © Josette Deschambeault, © Kristina Cowell, © Barb Miller. Collage 4 clockwise from top left: © Adventure Visionaries, © Matt Smolenski, © Andrew Burr, © Danielle Rocks. Bottom photo: © Andrew Burr. 

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