First & Wildest: The Gila Wilderness at 100

May 18, 2022

This episode is part of the Center for Western Priorities’ Road to 30: Postcards series, which highlights places across the country that are in need of protection and can set America on track to protect 30 percent of its land and waters by 2030.

The Gila Wilderness was the first wilderness area designated in the U.S., and it’s coming up on its 100 year anniversary in 2024. In honor of that, Torrey House Press and WildEarth Guardians put out a collection of essays about what makes the Gila Wilderness special, titled “First & Wildest: The Gila Wilderness at 100.” Kate and Aaron talk to two contributors—USFWS biologist Leeanna Torres and Apache backcountry guide Joe Saenz—about what makes the Gila special, as well as the threats it’s facing today, from military flyovers to attempts to dam the Gila River. Then, WildEarth Guardians’ Southwest Conservation Manager Madeleine Carey tells us how her group is working to protect the Greater Gila region.


House Democrats seek criminal charges against Bernhardt

9th Circuit rules against Rosemont Copper mine

See the Western conservation projects getting Infrastructure Act money this year

Order “First & Wildest: The Gila Wilderness at 100”

Gila book launch event

First & Wildest book trailer

Hosts: Aaron Weiss & Kate Groetzinger
Music: Purple Planet
Photo: Leia Barnett