Spring 2024 Wilderness Book Club Pick

First and Wildest: The Gila Wilderness at 100

Edited by Elizabeth Hightower Allen

For our spring book club pick we’ve chosen First and Wildest: The Gila Wilderness at 100 in celebration of the 100th anniversary of the establishment of America’s first wilderness area. In the summer of 1922, Aldo Leopold traveled on horseback up into the headwaters of New Mexico’s Gila River and proposed to his bosses at the Forest Service that 500,000 acres of that rough country be set aside as roadless wilderness. Thus was born America’s first—the world’s first—designated wilderness. A century later, writer–activists, including Indigenous voices, come together to celebrate this vast, rugged landscape, the Yellowstone of the Southwest. Contributors include Michael P. Berman, Philip Connors, Martha Schumann Cooper, Beto O’Rourke, Martin Heinrich, Pam Houston, Priyanka Kumar, Laura Paskus, Sharman Apt Russell, Jakob Sedig, Leeanna T. Torres, and JJ Amaworo Wilson.

Submit your thoughts to share with the book club by June 24!