History being made in Alberta: Picket-line prevents clear-cutting in Castle protected area for 16th day

Picket-line counter posts site where locals & outfitter continue to hold back clear-cutting in Castle protected area

Beaver Mines: Located on the way to Castle Mountain Resort in the Castle Special Management Area of southwest Alberta, locals, businesses and outdoor enthusiasts will be counter posting the site today with the Alberta Government's decision and map designating the area as a Special Place protected area. (Document attached or is on government webstite http://alberta.ca/home/NewsFrame.cfm?ReleaseID=/acn/199803/5992.html , except for the original map with the decision.) It's now 16 days and counting that a rotating picket-line maintained by outdoor enthusiasts and near-by residents, and an outfitting camp are holding back Alberta's Sustainable Resource Development Department (SRD) and a sawmill located outside the region (Spray Lake Sawmills west of Calgary in Cochrane) from starting to clear-cuting in the protected area.  The area is part of the Crown of the Continent geotourism area, one of only two marketed by National Geographic in North America www.crownofthecontinent.net .

Due to those on the picket-line and at the outfitting camp, no harm has yet been done to the protected area.  Spray Lake Sawmills logging contractors fired up their equipment, but did NOT break the picket-line yesterday to begin bulldozing a logging road.  About eight Sustainable Resource Development officials were on site yesterday, including the department's head of communications from Edmonton.  Those at camp and on the picket-line were serves with an Enforcement Order by SRD yesterday.  Spray Lake Sawmills has yet to go to court to try to get an injunction against those standing on line to uphold the Special Place protected area, which the government announced as being designated to "preserve Alberta's natural heritage."

A rally is again planned for this Sunday in support of those on the picket-line and the second generation outfitter who put up his outfitting camp at the site on January 9th.  It will again be held at the entrance to the Castle Special Management Area at 2:00 pm and will walk to the edge of the site that the Alberta Goivernment has closed to the public, which is located along and actual over the road going to Castle Mountain Resort and extends south towards Scout Canada's Camp Impeesa and the Beaver Mines Lake Provincial Recreation Area within Sepcial Place protected area.

For interviews contact (no cel phone reception at the camp in the Castle):

  • Satellite phone at camp for use of media (limited battery time, so best to use to set up interview times from a land line or call land-lines below to set up interview time from the camp).  
  • Gordon Petersen, Castle-Crown Wilderness Coalition: 403 627-3732 [email protected]
  • Mike Judd, local outfitter: 403 627-2949
  • Peter Sherrington, Beaver Mines, 403 627-352, [email protected]

More information at www.savethecastle.org or Facebook, Stop Castle Logging