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  Sierra Magazine
  July/August 2005
Table of Contents
Inventing Tomorrow
Can Technology Save the Planet?
Earth's Innovators
The Perfect Fix
Encore in Yosemite
The Common Good
Interview: Dan Chiras and Dave Wann
Let's Talk
Ways & Means
One Small Step
Lay of the Land
Hearth & Home
Hey Mr. Green
Good Going
The Sierra Club Bulletin
Sierra Archives
About Sierra
Internships at Sierra
Advertising Information
Current Advertisers

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Our private nonprofit organization oversees the sale of educational materials within Grand Canyon National Park. An article in the March/April Sierra mentioned the creationist book Grand Canyon: A Different View ("Lay of the Land," page 12). This title was approved as "Inspirational." It was never, as you claimed, in a science section. We have carried many other divergent viewpoints, including diaries of early explorers, which postulated theories on canyon formation that do not stand up to current scientific standards. As educators, we believe in encouraging people to learn more about a subject and draw their own conclusions.
Brad L. Wallis, Executive Director
Grand Canyon Association

"Lay of the Land" opens with concern about religion getting mixed up with environmental issues. Yet "Last Words" in the same issue closes with this comment from John Muir: "God has cared for these trees, saved them from drought, disease, avalanches, and a thousand straining, leveling tempests and floods; but he cannot save them from fools." Muir was perhaps not as disturbed as his club was by the discussion of religion and God?
Richard E. Carter
St. Paul, Minnesota

You've talked about reaching out to other groups. But then you describe a Sierra Club lawsuit against telescopes on Mauna Kea in Hawaii ("The Sierra Club Bulletin," March/April, page 67). My wife and I are amateur astronomers as well as Sierra Club members. We like the idea of humanity learning the most it can about the universe. Please don't force us to choose between environmentalism and science.
Pete James
Plymouth, Minnesota

The answers to the "Do You Know Nature?" contest in our March/ April issue can now be revealed: 1. Musk ox herds protect themselves by forming a circle or semicircle with their horns facing outward. 2. The puffin's primary avian predator is the great black-backed gull. 3. Of humpbacks, the male is the more prolific crooner. 4. The roseate spoonbill's feeding style is called "head-swinging," in which the bird moves its bill back and forth underwater to snag small animals. 5. A black bear doesn't have the grizzly's telltale hump above its shoulders. Its face appears long and straight, while the grizzly has a large, round head with a concave facial profile. Three winners were chosen in a random drawing of correct entries. They have already been notified. For their names, send a self-addressed, stamped envelope to Sierra. Thanks to our generous sponsors: Eureka!, Garmont, Kokatat, New England Natural Bakers, Tender, Thorlo, and Sierra Club Outings.

A "Let's Talk" review in the March/April issue stated that Kansas is "one of the poorest states in the country." Per-capita personal income in the state is actually a little below the national average. Also in March/April, "Thirty-Hour Valley" misstated the size of New Mexico's Raton Basin. It is 2.6 million acres. Finally, in "Whale Tales" , we forgot to mention this important rule: To avoid harassing humpbacks, stay 100 yards away.

CONTACT US: We welcome letters in response to recent articles. Letters may be edited for length and clarity. Write to us at 85 Second St., 2nd Floor, San Francisco, CA 94105-3459; fax (415) 977-5794; e-mail

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