The Way of the Woods: Journeys Through American Forests July 09, 2009

The Bradford Era

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Allegheny National Forest discussed in new book

WARREN ­ In "The Way of the Woods: Journeys Through American Forests," Linda Underhill explores some of America¹s most extraordinary forests, from proposed wilderness in the Allegheny National Forest, to the old-growth groves of Cook Forest State Park, to the ancient rainforests of Washington¹s Olympic Peninsula.

Pittsburgh native Underhill, a resident of Wellsville, N.Y., and currently a visiting professor of English at Gettysburg College, spent several years visiting important forest areas from coast to coast in preparation for writing "The Way of the Woods," recently published by Oregon State University Press.

For her chapter on the ANF, titled "Going Wild," Underhill augmented her research with a hiking trip with Kirk Johnson, executive director for Friends of Allegheny Wilderness into the proposed addition to the Hickory Creek Wilderness Area in southern Warren County. Friends of Allegheny Wilderness is a Warren-based non-profit organization seeking permanent protection for select portions of the Allegheny.

The proposed addition to the Hickory Creek Wilderness is a 1,780-acre area that encompasses the headwaters of East Hickory Creek, a state-designated Wilderness Trout Stream, and it contains a two-mile segment of the popular Tanbark Trail. It was first proposed for wilderness designation as part of the Eastern Wilderness Areas Act in 1974 by former Pennsylvania Senators Hugh Scott and Richard Schweiker.

In total, Friends of Allegheny Wilderness has proposed that 54,460 acres of the Allegheny be designated as wilderness under the Wilderness Act of 1964 in their Citizens¹ Wilderness Proposal for Pennsylvania¹s Allegheny National Forest, published in 2003. During the U.S. Forest Service¹s recently completed Forest Plan revision, more than 6,800 of a total of 8,200 public comments specifically advocated for the Citizens¹ Wilderness Proposal.

"The Way of the Woods" is available through the publisher, via online booksellers such as and, and at bookstores. Underhill is also the author of "The Unequal Hours: Moments of Being in the Natural World," published in 1999 by University of Georgia Press.

Friends of Allegheny Wilderness

A Citizens' Wilderness Proposal for Pennsylvania's Allegheny National Forest:

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