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HUNT Act would open locked public lands

Russell Bassett, Aug. 2, 2014


Sen. Martin Heinrich of New Mexico, sponsor of the Hunt Act, plays a trout in the Rio Grande del Norte National Monument. Photo by Garrett VeneKlasen
Recreating outdoors—whether you fish, hunt, hike, camp, or all of the above—is not only a ton of fun, it’s also good for you. There is considerable evidence the
exercise involved with these activities, coupled with the de-stressing benefits of being in nature, promote physical and mental health.
For a majority of Americans, participating in their favorite outdoor activities often involve being able to access public lands. For sportsmen and women especially, public lands are often vital for enjoying hunting and fishing. Unfortunately, many federal public lands are actually off-limits to the public because they are surrounded by private lands and lack legal access. A recent report found that more than four million acres of these so-called “landlocked” public lands in the West
are closed to outdoor recreation.
The HUNT Act by Sen. Martin Heinrich of New Mexico would improve access on public lands The bill, S.1554, seeks to fix the problem of poor access due to “landlocked” public lands.