Visiting Iraqi Students hike Salmon River
Visiting Iraqi students join Oregon Wild for a hike along Salmon River.
It was a beautiful Oregon summer day for a hike to show off one of Oregon's natural treasures to a group of visiting Iraqi students. The students are a part of the World Affairs Council project at PSU.
We discussed how civic engagement works on conservation issues as we hiked along the beautiful Salmon River trail. The students had never seen trees as big as those hundreds of years old doug firs. One of the students had never been hiking before, period.
The students were surprised to learn that public lands are not automatically protected lands. So we gave them a crash course on public lands management and explained that the Salmon River area is still open to logging and thus why and how we are proposing it be protected as Wilderness.
We spent a good bit of time dispelling mutual cultural myths about what life is really like. Basically it boiled down to life here and there is not like they show it to be on TV. My eyes were opened to their perspectives and culture just as their eyes were opened to a very different landscape from their home country. "It's so green."