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 with Rob Miskosky

An Alliance for Public Land Access

They are called Caapla, which is an acronym for Canadians & Americans Allied For Public Lands Access. Caapla is “a group of Canadian and American citizens who have come together and recognized that both of our countries are being manipulated and aggressively influenced by a massive consolidation of groups, individuals, and governments. Together, our right to continued multi-use access for ALL users is being taken one connective piece at a time and our right to representation has been replaced with a cross border alliance of groups and government agencies that ignore citizens who oppose their goals. Both governments are representing conservation initiative goals for connectivity. These groups do not believe in sovereignty of our nations. Wildlife and habitat are the ruse being used to justify taking our land away from us. To do this, the same methods are being used in both countries. It is time for us to join hands and confront this threat to our sovereignty.”

Hauling in a hunting camp for several days often requires the use of OHVs.

Their mission is “to bring Canadians and Americans together as a force to confront the activities of our governments and the environmentalists they work with to restrict or ban our right to use our land. Efforts to ban our use include road closures, declaring corridors for conservation, buying up our land for conservation easements, obtaining funding from foundations and the government, influencing policies that support land-use restrictions, and stopping development.” You can visit their website at

What is interesting about Caapla is the amount of research that must have gone into the content found on their website – it truly is extensive, as they suggest with the following: This site is also intended to educate all of our citizens about our governments and their alignment with conservation initiatives which work against us, and expose all of their activity behind the scenes that is not shared with the general public. There are legitimate challenges the public must face in protecting their right to use public land. We will also offer information and education on grassroot partnerships and local level initiatives to address these concerns. Please share this website with others.

Those of you that follow my Outdoor Pursuits column know that I have long been an opponent of environmental groups whose purpose is to remove the human footprint from public land. Y2Y being the biggest of those groups with the vision of “An interconnected system of wild lands and waters stretching from Yellowstone to Yukon, harmonizing the needs of people with those of nature.” And the bold statement, “What Progress Looks Like – Protected Land.”

Protected from what... people? Tell that to the more than 42,000 signatures garnered on a petition titled, “Keep Public Lands Public in Alberta”.

As a trapper, I have witnessed firsthand the devastation that comes from clear-cut logging, as well as the oil and gas industry on my trapline, and the effects it has on many furbearers, so I’m not opposed to restricting some of this activity. But I also realize that without industry, many folks will face financial hardship; something often ignored by the many conservation partners bent on protecting public land.

Newly appointed AEP Minister Jason Nixon and the United Conservative Party (UCP) have so far shown that they are willing to listen to Albertans where decisions are being made regarding the use of public lands; unlike the NDP that were clearly holding hands and being led down the garden path by groups like Y2Y and the AWA. Perhaps, under the UCP, Albertans will have a better chance to be heard.

For previous Outdoor Pursuits click here.

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