Rocky Barker's blog: We want your good ideas for Idaho's next national monument

The Idaho Statesman put out a call to readers Monday to submit their best ideas for a national monument in Idaho. The idea seems to have come former Idaho Governor, and now Secretary of Interior, Dirk Kempthorne. Rocky Barker discusses it on his blog in the Statesman.

I expect any national monument would be small. Barker discusses saving the ghost town of Chesterfield in Eastern Idaho, for example. Chesterfield’s unusual survival (it hasn’t been carried away by tourists) is unique. Protecting it would generate little controversy.

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  1. Rocky Barker Avatar

    Thanks for posting this Ralph. I want people to be creative about proposing areas. Consider that Kempthorne likes parks and wants to leave a legacy, or help Bush leave a legacy. This could offer some different opportunities than would be available under someone else. I used Chesterfield as an example but there are many worthy places that could benefit from protection that won’t prompt an uproar.

  2. Robert HOskins Avatar
    Robert HOskins

    The value of getting more monuments is separate from the issue of a “legacy” for Bush and Kempthorne. Their legacies are already well established and will be incontrovertible.

  3. Sal Avatar


    I think Chesterfield is a perfect example, not because it wouldn’t cause an uproar but because it’s a GHOST_TOWN !

    Bereft of resources, long ago used to no avail, everybody fled because there was no way to survive under their infrastructural needs… Sounds like a Kempthorne legacy. Kind of symbolizes his hollow concern for natural resources… blowin’ in the wind like a tumbleweed.


Dr. Ralph Maughan is professor emeritus of political science at Idaho State University. He was a Western Watersheds Project Board Member off and on for many years, and was also its President for several years. For a long time he produced Ralph Maughan’s Wolf Report. He was a founder of the Greater Yellowstone Coalition. He and Jackie Johnson Maughan wrote three editions of “Hiking Idaho.” He also wrote “Beyond the Tetons” and “Backpacking Wyoming’s Teton and Washakie Wilderness.” He created and is the administrator of The Wildlife News.

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