In years gone by I’ve fly-fished crystal clear streams all over the Western Hemisphere, and I’ve marveled at the magnificent beauty each area had to offer. These areas are all free and open to the general public, a general public with a deep sense of love and compassion for the great outdoors.
Arizona’s East Verde River has such beauty; unfortunately, Arizona also has an element of mankind who possess little regard for the environment.
The banks of the East Verde River are littered with abandoned fire rings, empty bottles and cans, human excrement, garbage, trash, and an unimaginable amount of cast off debris. The sight of this blatant disregard for our natural environment makes even the non-outdoor enthusiast turn away in disgust.
The headlines to the article on the front page of Friday’s Payson Roundup stating: Big plans, lots of water for E. Verde River made my heart jump from my chest. I’ve unjustly complained about the personnel serving with the Tonto National Forest thinking they were just a bunch of government bureaucrats. For my skepticism you have my heartfelt apology.
I applaud your efforts to clean up the East Verde River and make it a destination area for our visitors from the Valley, and more importantly, a world-class fishery. If it takes a management decision to convert the area to a fee area, then so be it. (A fee of) $5, $10 or $20 dollars per car per day is a small price to pay for the satisfaction a true sportsman will receive just knowing the East Verde River will be protected for years to come.
Wm Edward Miles