Hunters and anglers working together to preserve fish and game habitats and hunting and fishing opportunities on our public lands in Alaska.

Sportsman’s Alliance for Alaska

November 24, 2010 Newsletter

This time of year, it’s all about “seasons.” Election season is (thankfully) behind us. Hunting seasons are in full swing in most places. Fishing season is still alive, even for those hearty souls in colder places. And the holiday season is upon us. Here’s to hoping you and yours are able to celebrate with family and friends. Take time to consider what you’re thankful for, then get out and enjoy some of those things.

Orvis retail store
Thank you to the staff at the Orvis retail
store in Dallas, Tex., for featuring SAA and
the Bristol Bay campaign at their October
conservation night event.
© Orvis retail store – Dallas, TX

One thing that the Sportsman’s Alliance for Alaska is thankful for is the support of so many allies in the work to protect Alaska’s prime fishing and hunting lands and waters. In the coming year, your passion for Alaska will be required as we work with federal agencies and members of Congress to ensure that areas in Bristol Bay and the Tongass National Forest remain productive for fish and game, and for those of us who love to pursue them.

Here are some of the news highlights from the past month or so. As always, there’s much more found at the Latest News page on the SAA site. Make sure to check the end of the newsletter for the preliminary list of 2011 sport show appearances – we need volunteers.

Bristol Bay: Incredible Exposure in National Geographic magazine!

National Geographic’s December issue, which is now available online and hits newsstands on December 1, tackles the brewing controversy surrounding the proposed Pebble Mine in Bristol Bay, and has sparked international concern over what might happen if one of the world’s largest copper and gold mines is developed in the home of the world’s largest runs of wild salmon. Read the press release about this 25-page feature story and check out the incredible slide show of images from the trip. Get yourself a copy and share it with everyone you know. This is a terrific opportunity to feature this issue in one of the most-read and respected magazines in the world.

Angela Herron, Rainbow Trout
SAA supporter Angela Herron with a 30.5”
trophy rainbow trout taken with guide
Danny Robinson from the Alaska Sports-
man’s Lodge. It was Angela’s second day
of fly fishing - ever!
© Angela and Jay Herron

Bristol Bay: Alaska Television Delves into Pebble Debate

KTUU television in Anchorage aired a 3-part investigative series on the proposed Pebble Mine controversy. The video clips feature a good overview of the subject along with interviews with folks from each side of the debate. Take a look.

Bristol Bay: Opposing Pebble Mine makes You a Terrorist???

If you are to believe the Pebble Partnership’s CEO, John Shively, those of us who prefer not to risk the world’s largest wild salmon fishery and one of the top sport fishing and hunting destinations on the planet are to be considered “terrorists.” Hard to believe, but that's the path he took at a recent development conference in Anchorage. He was railing against the laws and regulations that will play critical roles in determining whether the Pebble project is allowed to go forward or not.

Bristol Bay: Bringing the Battle to Anglo’s Front Yard

A contingent of Bristol Bay residents returned to the U.K. to continue raising awareness of Anglo American’s proposed Pebble Mine in the home country of the global mining giant. There was a lot of press around this trip. Read the participants’ journal entries, see a video and listen to two radio stories (“The Battle of King Salmon” parts 1 and 2) by the BBC, and read an opinion piece from two Bristol Bay natives in The Guardian which called for Anglo’s CEO to honor the promise she made to “not go where people don’t want us.”

Bristol Bay: Newsletter from the Bristol Bay Working Group

SAA participates in the very diverse Bristol Bay Working Group, which represents all the user groups involved with the Pebble Mine campaign. Check out the new BBWG newsletter which features news from the subsistence, commercial, and sport components of the campaign. Of particular interest is an interview with a former EPA regional administrator who recently traveled to Bristol Bay to educate residents on the role EPA will play in the proposed Pebble Mine process.

Tongass National Forest
Southeast Alaska’s incomparable Tongass
National Forest. © Amy Gulick, from
Salmon in the Trees

Tongass National Forest: Murkowski Wins Write-In Bid to Keep U.S. Senate Seat

S. 881, the “Sealaska Lands Bill,” remains a very controversial piece of legislation as it would transfer federal public lands to a private corporation for clearcut logging and other development. Senator Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) was defeated in the Republican primary election, but waged the first successful write-in campaign since 1954 to retain her seat in the U.S. Senate. (There are election challenges ongoing, but as of this date Murkowski holds enough votes to win even if all contested ballots went against her.) S.881 was sponsored by Senator Murkowski, and it remains to be seen what this election will mean for the future of that bill. Please remain ready to take action should S.881 start to move in Congress.

Donate to SAA

SAA is grateful for the generous support of individuals, businesses, and foundations. Your donations allow SAA to continue to work on efforts to protect prime fishing and hunting habitats in the Last Frontier for the benefit of current and future sportsmen and women. We’re still running a few special donation promotions with the following items available, although supplies are dwindling on some items. Make your donations online at the secure SAA donation page; all amounts are accepted and appreciated! For donations of the following amounts, please indicate what item you’d like to receive in the “comment” box on the donation page.

Thanks for whatever you’re able to contribute to help secure a future for fishing and hunting on Alaska’s public lands!

Abel No Pebble Mine Reel to Aid Alaskan Conservation

Win a Limited Edition Abel “No Pebble Mine” reel from Sweetwater Travel

 If you are interested in getting your hands on one of the 100 special “No Pebble Mine” Super 5N trout reels from Abel…act fast. Sweetwater Travel (operator of Copper River Lodge and Royal Coachman Lodge – both in Bristol Bay) is giving away one of these beautiful reels. Just contact Pat Vermillion (888-347-4286 or to get your chance. Only 25 chances remain, and at $20 it could be an incredible return on your investment. Deadline to participate is November 30 so get hold of Pat right away!

Naknek River rainbow
Where else could you spend
quality time with SAA show
volunteer extraordinaire
Mark Hieronymous (pictured
with a massive late season
Naknek River rainbow)?
© Mark Hieronymous

Call for Volunteers – Sport Show Appearances in 2011

SAA will be exhibiting at the following sport shows in early 2011. There may be additional shows added later on, so stay tuned. If you are interested in lending a hand, we’ll take whatever time you could spare to volunteer. Please contact for details.

Best wishes for a safe and joyous holiday season. Take advantage of late season fishing and hunting opportunities when you get the chance. And, as always, make sure to introduce someone new to the outdoors. There is strength in numbers!

Thanks for caring about Alaska conservation.

Scott Hed
Director – Sportsman’s Alliance for Alaska

South Dakota smallmouth bass
Not all the big fish are in Alaska!
SAA Director Scott Hed with a 20.5” fall South Dakota smallmouth bass.
© Scott Hed

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