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forest defense | save the biscuit

The Hayman Incident as seed-core of the Great Western Mountain Beetle Disaster

Forest Service mismanagement at the Pike National Forest, Colorado, In the Fairplay District, Lake George Office, Crystal Creek Historic Mining District resulted in political, radical, corruptive, criminal and terrorist influences to occupy the vacuum -the lack of honest stewardship. The Hayman Wildfire of 2002 was not unexpected by the small time specialty miners of Crystal Creek.
Miner-Environmentalist video on YouTube The Hayman Incident
Miner-Environmentalist video on YouTube The Hayman Incident
In the vacuum-of honest stewardship- three fires were set in 2002 within 2 miles of the 1863 mining zone, the last of which, set by a Forest Service Ranger, developed into the 137,000 acre HAYMAN WILDFIRE. What many involved in the incident did not realize was the backstory of corruption, meth labs, casino money laundering, and even a terrorist training camp playing in the same area where small specialty mines, most smaller than house foundation excavations, have operated almost continuously since 1863. Mineral specimens and gem crystals of blue-green feldspar, called Amazonite, once served as the unofficial state gemstone for Colorado until recent legislation made another unique Colorado mineral the official gem. As mines go, these operations have been benign sources of little impact, providing excellent examples of operations, minerals, recreation, and scientific study in exemplary, good-examples of "green mining" in the traditional historic little mechanized hand labor, "pick & shovel" fashion, with recovery resembling archaeological methodology. The independent small miners faced the usual regulatory hurdles and oversight with hard work and responsible stewardship, welcoming clubs, visitors, classes, collectors. Crystal Creek has been a nature lover's gem for a long time. The priviledge of operating a mine there made the veterans sensitive to the abuses of a few, the criminal behaviors tolerated or encouraged by disreputable FS Rangers & State Mining Board Officials, who could not even reconcile disparate definitions, never mind reports of crime & gunfire in the district. Rangers were transfered, accusations flew, miners suffered from six figure thefts & vandalism, and hostile Rangers did nothing to protect or distinguish these recreational miners from the sometimes well-deserved criticisms and actions aimed at corporate mega-mining. Here is a video made by some Crystal Creek Amazonite & Smoky Quartz Crystal miners to tell some more of "The rest of the story" behind the forces that shape our public lands management behind the scenes, in spite of our efforts to protect and to promote appreciation & understanding & responsible stewardship of our natural national resources.
See "The Hayman Incident" on YouTube and on Google Video, as well as the full 1 hour documentary "Saga of the Blue Frog Mine" on Google Video, also by Old Tombstone Studio.
Now, after the fire's erosion damage has accumulated for years, with little or no F.S. work- it has made the mine roads impassible and the quarries unworkable, leading many miners to have abandoned their operations, their claims. The mines in the video were lost for an estimated total damage figure to the disabled veteran former owner of $5MILLION- or every bit of the 14 years of "retirement treasure chest" he had worked for. WORSE, now the mismanaged stands of standing timber have hosted the huge, disproportionate outbreak of Mountain PINE BEETLE which is devastating several western states forests, threatening the lodgepole pine stands andof course, setting the stage for even larger & more devastating wildfires which may be set by yet another Ranger in the unbroken cycle of terrorism and revenge still playing itself out on our public lands as the FS deploys UAV's to spy on the public in the use of its lands- its not for tree counting, my friends. Listen to the miners story, these miners, these ambitious rock collectors, they spend a lot of time afield, they have a voice worth listening to with am open mind. Thank You.

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