Keep your fingers crossed! Four years of work by outfitters, businesses, river advocates and our elected officials finally is nearing a payoff for the Campaign for the Snake Headwaters. In all, this bill would protect 387 river miles, the vast majority of which flow across public lands in the Bridger-Teton National Forest and Yellowstone and Grand Teton national parks. Only 5 percent of the river miles in the bill flow across private lands. This would cover the entire Jackson Hole Valley where the Snake River flows through and ensure the whitewater section in the Canyon and all the scenic stretchs are protected forever
The U.S. Senate voted 73-21 on Jan. 15 to pass S. 22, an omnibus public lands bill that contains the Craig Thomas Snake Headwaters Legacy Act, introduced by Wyoming’s late senator.
The House is expected to vote in the coming weeks.
Republican Sens. John Barrasso, who has championed the bill in Thomas’ memory, and Mike Enzi both voted in favor.
The bill would give Wild and Scenic designation to 387 miles of streams in the Snake River drainage in Wyoming. The Gros Ventre and Hoback rivers and Bailey, Crystal and Willow creeks are among the waters that would be protected, along with several stretches of the main stem of the Snake, including the whitewater run in the canyon.